Content with High Re-Share Value – The Easy Way to One Million Facebook Likes
Facebook users will be all too familiar with the sorts of shares which go viral along the lines of “one million likes and…” whereby the protagonist will achieve something favourable upon achieving the requisite number of likes or shares. One of the first and arguably the most memorable of these viral pictures involved Norwegian friends Petter Kverneng and Catherine Johansen, both 20.
Their image stipulated that Catherine would agree to have sex with Petter if their image received one million ‘likes’ on Facebook, something which it did effortlessly.
As it turns out, the picture was an in-joke between the two friends, although there have been similar stories in the wake of the image going viral. One father-to-be tried to convince his partner to name their first-born son Spiderman. A pair of siblings managed to convince their father to buy them a puppy by achieving one million likes. Even Obama got in on the act, with his post-election victory tweet going viral in a matter of minutes.
Undoubtedly, many people who control Facebook pages will be keen to understand just how posts go viral in such a short space of time, and a group of Facebook data analysts believe they have the answer – a cascade of re-shares.
The data essentially validates the concept of going ‘viral’ – just like a virus. Usually, when a story or image receives a large number of shares, it originates from a popular webpage or trusted online source, such as a news website. What makes the Norwegian study particularly interesting is that the shares radiate outwards from the couple’s friends, with popular pages which then share it creating another share base, and so on.
Approximately 5% of photos on Facebook are re-shared, at an average of fifteen re-shares per image. Only 0.5% of images are re-shared more than 500 times.
It comes as no surprise that the Norwegian photo was shared predominately by men, and upon reaching the million-mark, shares and likes rapidly tailed off. One thing’s for certain though – going viral is an effective means of promotion.