30 Jan

Use Google for Viral Inspiration

If you’re trying to find good ideas for ways to build traffic and credibility to your website, it’s always a good idea to look at what the big guys are doing — especially if what they are doing works. Then you can find ways to adapt that strategy to fit your own industry and niche and, maybe, duplicate a fraction of their results. When we’re talking about Google, unless you’re a major international brand, a fraction is all you will need to make a significant difference in your traffic.

Last Saturday, Google replaced their standard logo with a Google Doodle that paid tribute to Lucille Ball’s 100th birthday. Google does this periodically, but this particular logo was fully interactive, with video clips from some of the most famous episodes of “I Love Lucy.”

Within twenty four hours a search for “google lucy logo” returned over 6.8 million results.  Today, less than a week later, that same search returns more then 8.3 million results.  That means that a simple logo running for 24 hours on their homepage generated them over 8 million inbound links – and counting.  And many of those links are from major news outlets, monster tech sites, and marketing authority sites.  That’s a lot of link juice flowing their way. And the hype translates to more traffic as many people took to their favorite social media and shared the site with their friends, family and communities, sending millions more people to check out the logo for themselves.

You may not have the resources to create such a high quality piece of media (I wonder what the licensing fees were for showing those clips and using copyrighted and trademarked music, graphics, and content?), but you can do a number of things to attract attention, traffic, and links to your site:

  1. Create a useful tool, such as a calculator or date generator that is tied to your industry.  Think of those sites that let visitors calculate the amount of calories they burn doing specific exercises and apply the same principle to your work.
  2. Make a video that is both informative and entertaining and features your product.  A good example of this is the guys over at Blendtec who created the now legendary “Will it Blend?” series of videos.
  3. Generate an interesting flow chart, infographic, or even a cartoon that is both informative and humorous.

Once you create this piece of viral content, you need to make sure you publicize it.  After all, you won’t have the built-in audience of Google to discover the content and share it: on mobile media as well as traditional computers.  You need to make sure you get the word out about it to others.  You may also want to take a page from Google’s book and only display the item for a short period of time.  That makes people more likely to check it out before it expires.  You can always copy another tactic from the search giant and archive a copy of it elsewhere on your site for future use by visitors.

Article by John Duncan a writer and blogger who often works on his motorcycle, (with the help of a Harley Davidson repair manual of course) and likes to fish, hunt and travel.

4 thoughts on “Use Google for Viral Inspiration

  1. Great ideas, thanks for sharing! The key is, like you said, finding that niche and then spreading the word. Even though many businesses don’t have the same audience size as Google, social media has really helped businesses grow. Posting a new app or feature on Facebook or Twitter can send hundreds more people your way.

  2. Nice point. Will It Blend is a great example of a company that used video to market their product with great success. It provides the consumer with in depth, relative details in a humorous, memorable way.

  3. I like the idea of creating an interesting graph or flow chart that can be both informative and humorous. Advertisements should inform and humor their audience. There is nothing worse than a boring add.

  4. I like the idea of using video as a form of advertising. I know if I had to read an advertisement or watch a video I would choose the video (I’m lazy) also you can get so much more into a video, with verbal info and also visual aspects of what it is you are trying to show off.

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