Academic research reveals the “ABCD” of viral video

New Ideas in MarketingEssential news for marketers, summarised by YouGov
January 23, 2019, 10:21 PM UTC

A psychographic segmentation could help brands master the science of going viral.

The researchers applied a new technique, sentiment analysis, to classify consumers by their strength of feeling towards an ad or brand by analysing their social media activity. They propose that this approach predicts the chances that they will share video content, enabling marketers to engineer viral campaigns by targeting the right people at the right time.

The four segments they uncovered are “Active”, “Brand-fanatic”, “Content-hungry” and “Dormant”, referred to as an “ABCD typology”. The findings appear to show that these are distinct groups with different balances of feelings towards content and brands on the one hand, and attitudes and intentions towards sharing on the other.

They identify the “Active” segment as the most important for “seeding” viral campaigns, as they are the most likely to pass on video content and so “drive the diffusion of viral ads”. This group has strong feelings towards both the video itself and the brand advertised, challenging the received wisdom that viral content needs to downplay brand information to promote sharing.

Read the original research:

[40 minute read; article may be behind a paywall]