Home > Uncategorized > Why things go viral

Why things go viral

Creating a viral program seems to be top of many communication professional’s lists.

Came across this post by Dan Zarrella where his analysis of data shows why people pass things along.

Interestingly his analysis separates out those who send one to one v/s those who send one to many.

Summary below:

Top reasons in order of priority

One to One :

Personal Relevance



Relationship building

Common interest

They might miss it



One to Many

Audience Relevance

Increased Reach

Further a specific cause/message

Utility and usefulness


Networking and meeting people

No surprises there.

While there are some differences between the two sets, Relevance tops the list. So if we want something to go viral create something of relevance and let it loose amongst the audience.

Humour always tends to work. I wouldn’t be surprised that the most shared material on any electronic means of communication, be it email Facebook or Twitter wasn’t a joke of some sort.

The findings above could be useful to serve as a checklist/ help define a clear goal for content creation.

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