Sharing is the Key to Success: How Your Campaign Can Go Viral

Crowdfunding Goes Viral with Social Media.

Remember when the advice to share was something that kids learned in kindergarten? The stakes were no higher than being able to play with a friend’s favorite toy or having access to scissors and crayons during art class then, but sharing taken a giant leap forward from those classroom days. Sharing as we know it in today’s society includes everything from photographs to history-changing messages. What makes something go viral so that it’s shared among the millions who make up the social media community? According to the author of Contagious: Why Things Catch On, content that reaches an audience far beyond that of the original posting doesn’t spread because of random luck.

If you want your crowdfunding campaign to go viral in order to reach an audience that matches that of the superfood, just follow Berger’s steps to success. The rules of engagement that Berger has outlined demonstrate an intuition about human nature’s desire to belong and be included in the latest trend, as well as a shrewd understanding of how social media can influence market patterns.

Six Social Media Steps that Make Crowdfunding Campaigns go Viral.

Social Currency is a concept that explains that human desire for community. We all want to belong to a group, and thanks to Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, we can all be part of the inclusive social media community. What do you do with your friends? You share. Sharing information via your social media friends not only lets you connect with others, but it also provides a service that makes us look good to others.

Triggers link what you’re offering to other cues or popular events, thereby reminding people to include your project, product, or service in their conversation. Social media means that a lot more people can be talking about your project because a lot more people are aware of it.

go viral

Emotion evokes a human response from people; this is a powerful incentive that inspires people to share what they’ve seen. If they’re feeling it, they want others to feel it too.

Public is the essence of marketing; one person absolutely loving your product all alone doesn’t sell more. If your campaign is promoting a service, idea, or project that’s getting talked about in the public arena, its success is much more likely.

Practical Value reflects the desire of others to endorse a product or idea that makes the world better. People like to be healthier (which is part of the reason that kale, mentioned earlier, has done so well in the marketplace); they also want to learn things, they want to be more efficient, more financially resourceful—all these are areas where a well-promoted campaign that is reaching beyond your immediate circle can make itself welcome.

Stories turn hard, cold facts into something that people can relate to. Better health is something we all strive for, but why has kale become so popular it’s now part of popular culture? Other vegetables are good for you, but when’s the last time your children mentioned that they were bringing their new friend, Tomato, home to play? Kale, the vegetable with a social media following, is on a different level of the food pyramid.

Crowdfunding and the Kale Connection.

There’s no denying that technology has played a key role in the universal appeal of sharing. The fact that, according to the Pew Research Center, 64% of American adults own a smartphone has paved the road for sharing traffic. But Berger points out that there’s a psychology to sharing that’s even more important: why do people share? When you understand that, you can tailor your campaign for a successful fit.

“Virality,” says the book’s author, Wharton School Professor Jonah Berger, “isn’t born, it’s made.” If you want to know how to make sure that your message catches that virality, Berger has outlined six steps that can turn your crowdfunding campaign into a movement as successful as kale.

That’s right, kale. The green vegetable that went from a B-list member of the vegetable family to A-list celebrity veggie, with fans that include Beyonce, Whole Foods, and Martha Stewart, not to mention the 600-plus new babies born since 2012. Berger explains that kale is “the right blend of novel and nutritious that allows people who care to show that they are on the next big thing.”

Going Viral with Kale: The Crowdfunding Strategy.

You’re probably wondering how on earth kale went viral, both as a vegetable, a product, and a concept. Well, it helped that kale had proactive advocates. The American Kale Association partnered with Oberon Sinclair of My Young Auntie PR to generate a campaign that would put its product on center stage. Sinclair found some high-end, hip names to endorse kale as the next big thing and the promotion paid off. Since kale went viral several years ago, everyone is going green digestively: a search on Instagram for the hashtag #kale reveals that kale has been shared in more than one million pictures to date. That’s quite a success story for a vegetable gone viral.

No question about it, the marketplace today is crowded. You want those crowds, don’t you? Following these proven ideas that Berger has outlined will help you steer the crowds your way to check out the product that your crowdfunding campaign is promoting.