Thales Teixeira from Harvard Business School does research on the virality of video ads. One key finding: In regard of the brand less is more. What else is relevant you read in our interview with Thales.
From your perspective: Is a viral video success planable?
Well, yes and no. It is not completely predictable. That is a tough order. But there are things that one can do to increase its chances of success. How many views "success" means is really hard to say. But the things that help success are with respect to the content and the distribution strategy. Content is much what I talked at the conference. One, how to place the brand image; two, how to distribute emotions, and three, who to seed the viral video to. This last one regards distribution. Using influencers to propagate the message is like starting to row a snow ball down the hill. Once it gets some inertia, it goes downhill alone.
You spoke of the "emotional roller coaster" as one key factor for success. What does that mean?
Alternating the amount of emotions delivered, particularly for positive emotions such as joy, is more likely to get people to watch a video ad until the end. See attached article for more.
You researched on humor. Do your findings apply to other emotions such as grieve, horror etc. as well?
The reality is I am not sure about all emotions. For surprise, it is not likely because surprise is a very brief and fleeting emotion. It's hard to "mange" its delivery as humor is. I have never researched negative emotions and prefer not to speculate.
What can B2B companies learn from your research?
I am confident much of this applies to B2B. The reason is that customers of B2B companies, the managers of other businesses, are still people and behave as such. When they watch a TV commercial or viral videos, they tend to watch as any other person, for the most part, and are subject to the same attentional and emotional "laws" of behavior that I have uncovered.
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