Viral Video’s Success and Failure: You’re Fired!?

  • Posted by Snowy 31 Oct

Viral Video’s Success and Failure: You’re Fired!?

Apprentice TV viral

What did The Apprentice’s online video channel episode teach about making effective online media?

“The only way you lot are going viral is if you kiss someone with the bloody flu.”

This was Lord Alan Sugar’s response to the candidate’s viral video challenge on this week’s episode of BBC One’s The Apprentice. But what caused such a strong reaction on something that should be so easy?

The answer is, making a successful viral video is far from simple. The ease of making online video is a common misconception; in truth vast amounts of work goes into the research, conceptualisation, production and distribution of any successful professional online media, let alone something planned to go viral.

So how exactly do you go about creating a successful video? Let’s see where The Apprentice went right, and more importantly wrong..

“The overall vision is to get a balance between informative and entertainment.”

More than one billion unique users visit YouTube each month, so it’s no surprise that it’s the Internet’s major purveyor of viral videos. But, with over 100 hours of video uploaded every minute, viral videos desperately have to snap up the attention of their audiences, if they’re ever going to stand a chance of getting noticed.

The candidates, had the right idea choosing topics which are popularly searched, one group deciding on fitness and the other on food. However, selecting a target audience is important as it directly correlates to the number of views you can predict a video to get and sets the right tone for this audience. As the ‘Summit’ team discovered when they took their pitch to Buzzfeed, an internet news media company, their audience estimate of 18-30 year olds was completely wrong. In fact, the actual audience of their style of video would be closer to 8-10 year olds. The balance of tone was wrong for their audience; a cookery video for 18-30 year olds, and juvenile slapstick humour obviously didn’t mix.

A panellist on the aftershow ‘You’re Fired’ commented on this, saying ‘when they said 18 to 30 I thought they meant months’. Keeping to your audience, we see here, is key, especially to make a video viral a hit. ‘Summit’s choice to collaborate with Youtube star Ollie White was good, using his numbers to boost their own, which could have worked better had their demographic been the same.

“It was neither hilariously funny nor was it really instructive.”

A little does not go a long way with market research. The more you do, the more accurate and relevant your content will be to your audience. This was the main issue with team ‘Tenacity’, who lost the online video challenge with ‘Fat Daddy Fitness Hell’, a video channel about helping people lose weight that was meant to address issues in a light-hearted, comedic way.

The internet is filled with humorous videos of people trying to be funny through the way they try to go about a daily activity. There was nothing unique about their ‘Fat Daddy’ approach. That’s ultimately what contributed to their failure.

As well as this, there was the issue of it being very middle ground, explained by a team member who stated ‘it was neither hilariously funny nor was it really instructive’. Their downfall in this sense was trying to pack too much into one video, overloading their content and weakening it’s appeal.

Successful Videos Can Better Your Business

Despite the dramatic failure of the candidates, businesses with the right help can achieve successful videos that will promote their companies and increase their business growth.

LoveLove Films is an award winning multimedia production company that creates a diverse range of content including adverts, promotional videos, animations, corporate videos, motion graphics, viral videos and more.

We work with a variety of brands and agencies, producing exciting content for any product. Our team loves producing innovative and different media and can create viral campaigns with high quality precision and success for your brand.

To contact us at our Bournemouth studio, simply call 01202 537858 or email us at:

Alan Sugar, BBC1, Bournemouth, LoveLove Films, Production Company, The Apprentice, viral, viral videos, Virals

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