How to Successfully Go Viral on YouTube


At the time of writing, it's estimated that roughly 100 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube each minute. Furthermore, the site receives 1 billion unique visitors each month and is estimated to reach more 18 to 34 year-olds than any cable TV network in the world. Yes, YouTube is immensely popular, and millions of users are making money off of their uploaded videos. A reason for this is because they have enough of an audience to help their videos go "viral," or spread rapidly over the Internet -- but, going viral on YouTube isn't easy.


  • Search engines can't read your video content, so don't strategically stuff your video script with keywords for search engine optimization. Instead, focus on the parts of your video upload that search engines can see, like the keywords section, the title and the video description. These are the three parts of your video upload that you want to stuff with keywords, so that your video is easier to find, both when users are browsing search engines and the YouTube site itself.


  • Like any type of content, don't just post something and expect people to find it -- work at promoting it. Share your YouTube video over Facebook, see if you can get it trending on Twitter and post it to any blogs or personal websites that you operate. This all helps increase its exposure and opens it up to more eyeballs, which in turn can help it gain traction in the Internet world, especially if your video is well-received and shared or promoted by other users.

Concise, Clean and Interesting Content

  • Videos that are between two and four minutes long and shot on high-resolution cameras are typically the ones that receive the most clicks, shares and comments. Furthermore, you should be aiming to capture the attention of your audience within the first 15 seconds of your video, as it's all too easy for someone to click out of your video if they don't like what they see. Stay away from vanity shots and rambling audio.

Other Tips

  • Make sure that your YouTube video settings are adjusted to accept comments and ratings. Videos that are peer reviewed and have a lot of comments keep users coming back to continue the conversation and, ideally, watch your video again. Comedy and controversy can also help your video in going viral. People are likely to respond and share things they find funny, and are also likely to share things they agree or disagree with.

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  • Photo Credit Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images News/Getty Images
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