You Want To Know How To Go Viral With Your Content?

Find out how to go viral with these 5 Case Studies that show exactly what it takes to make your content viral.

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When a brand masters the techniques involved in creating and distributing viral content, engagement and sales inevitably skyrocket. Viral content has the potential to be viewed not only at the time of release but for years afterward, making it a smart advertising investment with an impressive ROI.

Clearly everyone wants their content to go viral, but what does it really take to go viral? Take a look at these five case studies demonstrating successful viral marketing to see how you can leverage the same techniques for your own campaigns.


Movoto Maps Marvel

mapping marvel origins

Real estate research and listing site Movoto tapped into the growing popularity of Marvel superheroes to spark curiosity in its target audience with the Mapping Marvel campaign. To tie these two apparently unrelated subjects together, the company mixed the background stories of the beloved Marvel characters with its services by mapping out the places from which each originated.


The campaign had several elements making it ripe for viral status:

  • Tie-in with pop culture
  • The use of multiple content types, including apps and interactive content
  • Appeal to local and regional loyalty and culture


Local marketing has grown in importance in recent years, and by mapping out the characters of Marvel, Movoto was able to make connections with people around the country while promoting its real estate website. Timing also played a key role in generating the more than 1.7 million shares the brand’s content received on social media.


The Ford Fiesta Movement

ford fiesta movement

Ford took advanced product testing and turned it into a successful word-of-mouth viral marketing campaign to promote the release of its Fiesta model. Online influencers were given the chance to test the Fiesta before it hit the U.S. market and encouraged to blog, tweet, share Facebook updates and make YouTube videos about their opinions. This is not the first time that ford promotes its car in an unusual and unique way, Ford has been a marketing innovator in this arena.

The result of the campaign was 11 million social media impressions and 5 million social engagements. Product awareness climbed to an impressive 38 percent among Generation Y. Aside from the investment of providing the vehicles to influencers, the company didn’t have to spend a single dollar on the campaign.

User-generated content (UGC) and peer reviews were the power behind this campaign. Consumers trust feedback from others who have used a product more than the marketing messages from brands, and Ford made sure the UGC from their product testers made it onto as many social media platforms as possible. With this wide reach across the internet, anyone could find an opinion about the Fiesta from someone with similar tastes and driving habits to discover if the car was right for them.


Visa Videos

By partnering with a content marketing agency, Visa was able to considerably expand its reach across the Asia-Pacific market. Working with the agency and using a “discovery platform” to distribute video content, the company increased click-through rates by 270 percent, and 95 percent of the visitors to its website each day were new rather than existing customers.

Their approach was simple. Using a distribution platform allowed Visa to connect with audiences already interested in the subject matter and what the company had to offer. By working with experts in content marketing and leveraging a third-party distribution solution, they attained a rate of 100 million unique visitors per month. A focus on storytelling and the use of eye-catching headlines grabbed attention and elevated Visa’s presence across the Asia-Pacific sector.


Air New Zealand Goes Epic

Before the release of the third film in Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit trilogy, Air New Zealand took advantage of the film’s association with the country to make what they dubbed “the most epic safety video ever.”

The idea of unusual safety videos featuring celebrity cameos wasn’t new to the airline. They’d been filming engaging versions of standard safety instructions since 2011 in an effort to bring new life to the bland nature of a speech to which many airline travelers have become apathetic. To coincide with the final Hobbit movie, they went all out to produce a video with a truly epic Middle Earth theme, including a quick appearance by Elijah Wood.

By filming the video in some of the same locations where the trilogy was shot, the company created a link between the popular fantasy franchise and their brand. This drew attention from fans and ignited a “sense of national pride.” By combining a local connection with an innovative format, a creative idea and high-quality production, Air New Zealand hit all the hot buttons for viral content and created a video people are still watching today.


Smells Like Old Spice

You probably remember the Man Your Man Could Smell Like commercials released by Old Spice in 2010. The series of spots featuring Isaiah Mustafa spouting disjointed but humorous monologues was an attempt by Proctor & Gamble to refresh the brand and appeal to a younger group of consumers.

The company followed up the spots with two other campaigns: Questions and Response. The Response campaign in particular was designed to engage with the brand’s audience and provide personalized videos in reply to real inquiries. With over 5.9 million views on YouTube, an 800 percent increase in Facebook fans and a 125 percent increase in sales, the three campaigns were a collective success for Old Spice.

What made these ads so effective? The videos focused on brevity and included off-the-wall humor and visuals to keep viewers interested. Content was distributed across many channels to connect with as wide an audience as possible, and creativity took precedent over making a hard sell.

So, what can you do to make your content go viral?

Based on the case studies above there are definitely some key elements that can be isolated to create a recipe for brewing up your own viral content.

  1. Connect with your audience on an emotional and one-on-one level.
  2. Use humor, compassion and empathy to forge that emotional bond.
  3. Connect with people using timely events.
  4. Ultimately, you will want to provide value to your customer.



When you hit the viral “sweet spot” with marketing content, what began as a unique idea can become a phenomenon promoted by your customers. Viral content costs less than other advertising when compared to the returns it brings, and the increase in conversions can take a brand from mediocre to unforgettable in a matter of weeks.

Investing in viral content today means reaping rewards long into the future. Be creative, be original, be engaging and be relevant so that your audience will continue to share your brand message through all the social channels powering modern word-of-mouth advertising.