A video on my personal profile recently went viral. I was at a friend’s dairy farm (Rovey Dairy in Glendale, Arizona) and I sat on his Watusi named Longstreet. That’s it. But it was enough as the video took off after being on Facebook for a month. Right now, it’s at just over 1 million views.
Is that really viral?
Well, in today’s world of viral big numbers, it didn’t reach the level of #dairydanceoff girls at 11 million (about 26 million overall), but it’s pretty good for something agriculture-related.
A few other outlets picked it up and, overall, my video had about 6 million views on different social channels. I even had a friend tell me he saw it on a Russian channel.
Personally, I think anything over 100,000 views is great.
You may be wondering how I did it. Here are a few tips I use in my video classes (which are available to dairy farmers and their organizations for free. Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org for details).
1. Make them laugh, cry, or think
I always like to tell my video classes that you should try to make people laugh, cry or think. If you accomplish all three, you have a Hollywood blockbuster, and you know how hard those are to make.
2. Always start with the action
Never place a logo or bumper (an animated logo or standardized 1-2 sec video) before the video — just start with the action. And with farms, I always emphasize the animals. People love seeing the calves just like you do.
3. Optimize for how people are watching video on social
This means that vertical or square videos are hot right now. I would not do this for a “How to” video on YouTube but for Facebook and Instagram, it’s square or vertical.
4. Tag or Direct Message Viral Video Channels
It’s smart to tip off companies that like sharing viral videos. Here’s a list of them that you can tag or direct message your video.
You can tag your local TV, newspaper, and radio social channels. They are always looking for fun local stuff to share.
After the video takes off, I have a few tips on how to handle the aftermath.
First, don’t beat yourself up about comments. If it’s viral, many people will make crazy comments about your video. It’s better to just not worry about it. It’s viral, and it won’t last too long anyway.
Second, if you shared it on your personal profile, you are probably going to get a lot of friend requests. I don’t recommend friending these people as you never know if it’s legit. It’s better to wait until after the video has subsided to check and see if you want to become “friends” with any of them.
Finally, if you have a great ag video that you think is worthy of a share, share it with me and I’ll pass it along to our team for review. We love checking out dairy and farm stories.
We are looking for dairy farmers who are Undeniably Devoted to their families, their farms and their communities. If you know of any with a great story to tell, please let me know.
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