What Makes Memes And Virals?

Planking, Moustaching, Grumpy Cat and Harlem Shakes oh my! You see these videos and images on talk shows, news media and blogs. They receive thousands of hits and views and other viewers start to imitate them, they want to be involved in what are virals and memes. Businesses want to take advantage of this for their content strategy, they also ask creatives that they want their videos to go viral. Honestly, you can’t make a video go viral because it all depends how viewers respond to the video and its content.

Potterling, Vadering and Hadoukening are the latest memes that everyone are participating in.

Pottering, Vadering and Hadoukening are the latest memes.

I happen to come across this particular Ted Talk video by Kevin Allocca, YouTube’s trends manger, and he explains in steps on how a video can naturally become viral and it all falls on what viewers find entertaining. In his presentation, Kevin notes that there are three elements that makes viral videos and images successful:


Individuals with high influence such as celebrities, talk show hosts, and well-known bloggers will find these videos and images and post them on their social media platforms and on television. People hold these influencers in high regard and so they to will start disseminating the found videos and images.

Communities of Participation

Viewers of particular viral videos and images want to get involved with the trend, perhaps put themselves on the spot as well so they imitate the initial viral video and images that became very popular. Viewers can be very creative so they may produce their own version of the content. One example was the recently popular Harlem Shake viral videos.


Videos and images can go viral if they are very unique. Viewers want to be surprised and entertained by the latest creative trends.

Watch the video for a more comprehensive illustration and who knows, you may be inspired to do something that may actually go viral.

written by

I 'mFrankie De Sotoand I was born on the beautiful island of Puerto Rico. I graduated at the top of my class from the University of North Texas with a BA in Art and 2 minors in Marketing and Radio, Television, and Film. I have been doing graphic design for the past couple of years creating graphics for advertising, signs, brochures , and flyers but I decided to return to school to expand my knowledge into more new media applications such as web design, human /computer interaction, Flash animation and marketing communications. I graduated with an MFA in Arts & Technology at the University of Texas at Dallas. My current studies are focusing on social media and marketing communications which in part encouraged me to begin this blog as well as my love for Hispanic culture and online media practices.

2 Responses to "What Makes Memes And Virals?"

  1. reko says:

    This falls right in line with Malcolm Galdwell’s book, “Tipping Point.” With so much being pushed in our face, tastemakers will hold an even greater power, as the landscape for entertainment keeps growing.

    Thanks for posting this video and blog, I found it very useful, as I am embarking on creating another online show.

  2. Frankie De Soto says:

    I appreciate your input and the compliment, you should also consider trasnmedia storytelling as it cross all media channels, I’ll be reading up on some good books based on the subject.

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