Fanning the Social Media Flame for Viral Exposure

Are you a content marketer? If so, you have a choice to make.

You can sit around and wait for your content to go viral.

You can hope you’ll get sudden bursts of traffic, hope your readers will spread the word, hope your content will catch fire.

Or you can bring your own matches and lighter fluid to set the dang thing aflame yourself.

As bloggers and content marketers, which will you choose?

Sure, sometimes the passion you have for a subject will be enough to ignite a spark and compel your audience to share your content with their network. Being able to unleash something with such conviction and power that it combusts on its own is great.

Over at my SEO consulting firm Outspoken Media, we’ve been able to do it several times.

Sometimes we post something like The Power of the Unexpected, something that goes hot without us lifting a finger. As content writers, we live for these moments.

However, they almost never happen.

What is more common is that marketers need to fan their content to help it ignite and go viral. And sometimes that means stepping in when an accidental hit shows signs of life. How do you recognize those signs to take advantage? Here are some methods we use at Outspoken Media.


image of lit match

Are you a content marketer? If so, you have a choice to make.

You can sit around and wait for your content to go viral.

You can hope you’ll get sudden bursts of traffic, hope your readers will spread the word, hope your content will catch fire.

Or you can bring your own matches and lighter fluid to set the dang thing aflame yourself.

As bloggers and content marketers, which will you choose?

Sure, sometimes the passion you have for a subject will be enough to ignite a spark and compel your audience to share your content with their network. Being able to unleash something with such conviction and power that it combusts on its own is great.

Over at my SEO consulting firm Outspoken Media, we’ve been able to do it several times.

Sometimes we post something like The Power of the Unexpected, something that goes hot without us lifting a finger. As content writers, we live for these moments.

However, they almost never happen.

What is more common is that marketers need to fan their content to help it ignite and go viral. And sometimes that means stepping in when an accidental hit shows signs of life. How do you recognize those signs to take advantage? Here are some methods we use at Outspoken Media. Leer más “Fanning the Social Media Flame for Viral Exposure”

The Rise of Page View Journalism

In the early days of newspapers, success and advertising was measured by total circulation. The ability to measure how many people were reading just the business section, lifestyle section, or sports section didn’t exist. As more consumers switch their news reading habits to online consumption, our ability to track which section and pages are being read has improved. However, this enhanced tracking has a dark side: the rise of page view journalism. Simply put, page view journalism is the deliberate creation of stories that are designed to increase page views. It often results in an increase of low quality, high volume reporting and off topic stories.
people will have to reach the conclusion that there is some quality news that is worth paying to have access to …

While page view journalism is often attributed as the primary cause of demand media style content, the fact is it’s so pervasive now that it has almost become the norm. Look at the homepage of Techmeme on any given day and you’ll see an increasingly large number of websites trying to siphon off some of that traffic by “reblogging ” the top stories of the day, adding little or no value to the discussion. While rebloggers are at the lower end of the food chain, page view journalism also occurs at the top. Techcrunch, for example, covers with voluminous detail almost every story that is even slightly connected to twitter. It wouldn’t surprise me if MG Siegler did an expose on how Mary in the AP department at Twitter killed the staple market by switching to paper clips. Don’t laugh…it’s not that far fetched.

Want an example of how to lose your focus? Check out Mashable, a site that regularly stretches to cover things like Tiger Woods and Fashion Week in an effort to bolster page views. The king of page view media is the Huffington Post, which reblogs, over-covers everything, and has gone off-topic so much it no longer has a main topic.
if you aren’t paying something, then you aren’t a customer: you are the product that’s being sold…


In the early days of newspapers, success and advertising was measured by total circulation. The ability to measure how many people were reading just the business section, lifestyle section, or sports section didn’t exist. As more consumers switch their news reading habits to online consumption, our ability to track which section and pages are being read has improved. However, this enhanced tracking has a dark side: the rise of page view journalism. Simply put, page view journalism is the deliberate creation of stories that are designed to increase page views. It often results in an increase of low quality, high volume reporting and off topic stories.

people will have to reach the conclusion that there is some quality news that is worth paying to have access to …

While page view journalism is often attributed as the primary cause of demand media style content, the fact is it’s so pervasive now that it has almost become the norm. Look at the homepage of Techmeme on any given day and you’ll see an increasingly large number of websites trying to siphon off some of that traffic by “reblogging ” the top stories of the day, adding little or no value to the discussion. While rebloggers are at the lower end of the food chain, page view journalism also occurs at the top. Techcrunch, for example, covers with voluminous detail almost every story that is even slightly connected to twitter. It wouldn’t surprise me if MG Siegler did an expose on how Mary in the AP department at Twitter killed the staple market by switching to paper clips. Don’t laugh…it’s not that far fetched.

Want an example of how to lose your focus? Check out Mashable, a site that regularly stretches to cover things like  Tiger Woods and Fashion Week in an effort to bolster page views. The king of page view media is the Huffington Post, which reblogs, over-covers everything, and has gone off-topic so much it no longer has a main topic.

if you aren’t paying something, then you aren’t a customer: you are the product that’s being sold… Leer más “The Rise of Page View Journalism”

Why I have faved 18,456 Tweets (why Twitter is dominant in tech industry)

In just the past year I’ve clicked to fave 18,456 Tweets. It’s a stunning number, if you think about it, and I don’t know of any other tech blogger who has done more faves.

What am I learning? Well, for one, there’s important stuff that gets written that doesn’t get on Techmeme. Yes, the important stuff does, like when a blogger for Gizmodo gets his house broken into by the cops. That’s big time on Techmeme, but page through my faves and you’ll find lots of other stuff that Techmeme doesn’t touch.


Image representing Twitter as depicted in Crun...
Image via CrunchBase

In just the past year I’ve clicked to fave 18,456 Tweets. It’s a stunning number, if you think about it, and I don’t know of any other tech blogger who has done more faves.

What am I learning? Well, for one, there’s important stuff that gets written that doesn’t get on Techmeme. Yes, the important stuff does, like when a blogger for Gizmodo gets his house broken into by the cops. That’s big time on Techmeme, but page through my faves and you’ll find lots of other stuff that Techmeme doesn’t touch.

Even for things that get on Techmeme, I’ve seen that stories break first on Twitter. Gabe Rivera, the guy who runs Techmeme, told me he’s noticed that too and said he’s about to add some Tweets to Techmeme. It will be interesting to see what he does. Leer más “Why I have faved 18,456 Tweets (why Twitter is dominant in tech industry)”