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How to go viral on TikTok or Instagram!

How to go viral on TikTok or Instagram!

Let's face it, going viral on social media is no easy task. It usually happens by complete luck or chance, and can be unintended for most people who have their 15 minutes of viral fame. However, there are certain things you can do to give yourself a much higher probability to go viral and get your video seen by millions. 

The Basics

1. First and foremost, your videos need to look great - and that starts with good lighting. If your aim is to get a video to go viral, using a ring light is essential. People simply won't watch the video for more than 2 seconds if it's dark or the subject matter is hard to see. You have to instantly make your video look intriguing or interesting, so it's hard to look away from. You have about 3 seconds to capture someone's attention before they keep scrolling.

2. The general visuals of your video have to be very appealing and something people love watching. For example, a video about sports, nature, animals, food, dancing etc has the potential for virality more than let's say, a video about doing yardwork. Why? Because people love those activities and can instantly relate to them.

3. Additionally, the music or audio has to be on point. If you're a TikTokker, you have the built in advantage of using a trending song, therefore boosting the share-ability of your video and allowing TikTok's algorithms to show it to more people. You can also use your own sounds - just make sure they sound crystal clear and nothing is muffled.

Advanced Tips 

1. Try to elicit emotions. Making people feel compassion, humor, or other happy feelings is worth aiming for if you want your content to gain traction. Even if you elicit a "negative" emotion, like someone thinking a food concoction is gross, that's still very powerful and people will share it.

2. Keep it short. Generally, a video under 25 seconds has the most potential to go viral. In the digital age, attention spans are shorter than ever. What does that mean for your content? Nobody (okay, almost nobody) wants to watch a ten-minute video unless it provides really clear value to them. Content that is most likely to go viral tends to be shorter in nature.

3. Align with current events. Similar to the last point, you’ll want to be aware of what’s going on in the world when you post your content, and then see if you can naturally align it. Keep up with current events, trending topics, and even popular meme formats to pile your content onto the bandwagon if something relevant takes hold.

4. Stay engaged with your followers. When you hit the “post” button, your job isn’t over! For one thing, you’ll want to keep monitoring the engagement and potentially interact with your audience if you start to gain traction. If your content is successful, you’ll also need media outlets to have a way to contact you to continue to fuel your success. 


Making a video go viral to be watched by millions of people around the world is no easy feat, but by following the above steps, you're giving yourself a much better chance. Also, NEVER GIVE UP. They say luck is the residue of hard work and good design, so if you fail once, keep going and going until you succeed.

The beautiful thing about social media is no one cares about your "failures" aka the videos that don't go viral - they'll just remember the video that did go viral, and that can change your life. If you're promoting a product, a brand, yourself or anything else - going viral is a priceless experience. 


- The Shine Lights Team 💡