If you’ve been lurking around any popular blog or forum this week, it’s highly likely that you’ve come across a video of a man – known as Frank – proposing to his girlfriend – Kasey – in a somewhat elaborate way in New York’s Central Park.
Filmed using a supposed “special app” for the Apple iPhone, the video shows Kasey being led to a bridge in Central Park before a band appears and plays her favourite song, moments before Frank sails out from under the bridge in a boat and asks Kasey to marry him, all of which is filmed on several iPhones and viewed on an Apple Macbook.
Initially, the general consensus seemed to be that this video was completely legitimate and just one guy making an over-the-top proposal of marriage to his girlfriend that he’s had his friends film so that they can enjoy it at a later date.
Well, yes, it is.
But it’s also likely to be viral marketing video and completely made up.
No one has released an official statement yet to say that the video isn’t real, but from the fact that there’s a lack of continuity in the footage through to the fact that as well as filming the whole proposal, there’s actually someone filming the people capturing the event on their iPhones, it wouldn’t be surprising if someone didn’t take responsibility for the piece soon.
However, the company behind the video is irrelevant, as it’s already doing the one thing that the video set out to do – get people talking about it, which will in turn eventually garner interest in the product that it’s advertising (which is expected to be the “special app”).
Viral marketing is something that has exploded in recent years, yet no matter how it’s done, there are three key points that each video is based around and which you should never deviate from if you’re looking to create your own small business viral marketing video.
1. Use a topic that a wide range of people can relate to
When you think of marriages and weddings, chances are your first thoughts on the ideal target audience are women who are looking to be proposed to.
This is in fact only a small portion of the audience for this topic and what about those people who are looking to propose to their partners and want some ideas?
Or those people who have just got engaged and want to relive the moment through the eyes of others?
How about newly weds who want to be taken back to the moment the ball on the whole wedding scenario started to roll?
And you can’t forget the millions upon millions of people who simply love Central Park and New York and watch as many videos as possible to get taken back to their favourite place in the world.
Plus, everyone loves a good love story, right?
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2. Make it look professionally amateur
When producing a video for the intention of it going viral, viewers want to be watching something that doesn’t look like a company has had it professionally produced, but they also don’t want to be watching an amateur filming the whole thing on their phone.
Find the middle ground and use it, just as this marriage proposal video has done so perfectly.
3. Don’t promote a product
When you watch the marriage proposal video, the one thing you don’t instantly think of is a specific product or brand.
Yes, you do see a few iPhones in various shots, but with so many people owning an iPhone worldwide, it’s not something that stands out.
And this is the key to a viral marketing video.
No one wants to see a product being promoted heavily. No one wants to see a company being blatantly advertised. No one wants to see corporate branding everywhere.
Subtlety is the absolute key to any successful viral marketing video. This video shows several people using a “special app” on an iPhone – they don’t advertise it or even talk about it for more than a few seconds, but it’s usage throughout the video – in a secondary manner – is enough to stir up enough interest.
Viral marketing videos are fantastic, but there’s one thing you have to remember – you can never make a video go viral. You can do your best to create one that should, if previous videos are to go by, go viral, but you can’t, no matter how hard you try, guarantee that it will be a success.