Have you stumbled upon a video on YouTube with more than a million views and wondered why it went viral?
While some might like to say the creator got lucky, there is actually a whole lot of work and strategy that goes behind it. While videos are inherently a more engaging content format, what keeps the viewers engaged and encourages them to share it on social media, are the emotional and cognitive responses they are able to stimulate.
Google’s Abigail Posner says, “We can’t underestimate the importance of understanding the Science of emotion in marketing: when we share a video or an image, we’re not just sharing the object, but we’re sharing the emotional response it creates.”
Simply put, any kind of engagement and social media sharing is an act that is driven by emotions.
The only way to ensure a high virality or k-factor is to understand the emotional appeal of a video and the key drivers behind the discovery, viewing & sharing of it.
According to a marketing research conducted by OkDork and BuzzSumo, the most popular emotions on social media is awe. The rest of user actions are broken into empathy, anger, laughter and more.
Every brand, depending on their industry and product have a different set of emotions to address when creating campaigns and advertisements. A few examples from India:
- Maggi leveraged on nostalgia to hit a high emotional quotient amongst their target consumers with the #WeMissYouToo ads.
- Similarly, the Swachh Bharat ad campaign used strong messages that openly shamed people who littered the cities they lived in.
- Ariel India’s #sharetheload campaign evoked immense empathy and went viral in just a few days.
Now if you think just conducting a survey amongst your target audience would get you enough insights on consumer emotions – you’re wrong.
You’ll need to go beyond the old school market research techniques and study emotional metrics that actually matter to your brand.
Optimizing videos for viral reach with Emotion Tech
An easy way to know what works the best for your video content is to test using a focus group and leverage Emotion Intelligence technology that helps decode subconscious emotional responses into actionable insights.
Emotion tech allows you to track a user’s physiological changes when viewing a video. It measures emotional and cognitive responses on a per second basis to give you measures such as attention, appreciation, familiarity, learning, excitement, boredom levels and many more.
- A wide angle can make the character look impersonal resulting into a dip in appreciation levels
- The video sections with the highest attention levels are the best sections for Brand insertion
- Higher appreciation levels at the beginning and end of videos create powerful memories that help ensure higher brand recall
Insights based on emotion data enable you to identify elements and sections of the video that your target audience doesn’t resonate with, and those that immediately grab their attention.
Based on the goal of a campaign, the marketer can then use the data to optimize videos to stimulate the desired emotions, predict market reaction and increase the probability of the content to go viral.