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15 Million Views

15 Million Views, Viral Video How To:

Interview with Keith Mullins

 

 

Ever dream of releasing a viral video?

 

Keith Mullins, guitarist, singer and songwriter, got that wish…

Aug 23rd, he asked on FaceBook “What are some ways that people get hits on their vids?

Aug 31st, he released an iPhone video on FaceBook… Dance Like No One’s Watching 15+ Million total views so far!

 

Want to know how?

 

So did I!

 

Keith explained it to me in a phone interview:

 

Keith Mullins
Keith Mullins, Photo by Jody Nelson

 

 

The story is framed to answer the first question that you are thinking: 

 

How do I release a viral video?

 

Keith followed four steps to create a viral video, that sent his performance from the Inverary Inn, Baddeck, Nova Scotia, Canada, to international attention across the internet:

 

The 4 virus seeds, in order

 

1. Do the work…

Keith was playing at a regular gig, 5 days a week for the tourist season… it’s not an accident he sounds so good!

Be serious about your craft: if you want to be a better songwriter, write regularly… better singer, be singing… 

talking about “not enough time” is making excuses.
be engaging and engaged on social media… care about other people. 

regularly post great stuff … increases your chances to create epic songs.

 

Working every day creates your superpowers… want to learn how to create everyday?

 

2. Recognize the Golden Moment

Be open, be aware, be patient

Keith told me he had several golden moments this summer watching captivating couples dancing to his music. That night, Keith felt it coming when an elderly couple asked him if they could order water, they were there to dance…


3 Record the Golden Moment

Be prepared to document the Golden Moment when it arrives (bonus if you see it coming, set up your camera, test sound/light/frame the shot)

After warming them up for 4 songs, and with a grin on Keith’s face the whole time… he asked a friend to video the couple with his phone, then kicked up the energy level with a one man band arrangement of Uptown Funk.


4 Share the Golden Moment

Release your video/music to the world… trust the internet

Keith has an engaged FaceBook following… he told me he is grateful to everyone who watches, comments, shares and likes his music. His fans like him both as a person and as an artist. This video resonated with Keith’s friends, they shared and commented… their friends suddenly saw it everywhere… It came through my FaceBook feed three times before I watched and liked the video… it was shooting past 1000 views….Keith’s FaceBook community spread it like wildfire because they loved it.

His iPhone video exploded on FaceBook even before Keith had it posted on his YouTube channel.

 

Then it went to:

CBC News, regional news service

CTV News, regional news service

Canadian NewspapersPress

Littlethings.com

Huffingtonpost UK

CBC Candy Palmater Show, Canada, National broadcast

Today Show, US, National broadcast

 

Keith has signed a publishing deal with Storyful.com to administer licensing rights, and to recoup any royalties from the pirated versions of his video that appeared on YouTube: licensing@storyful.com

 

 

Viral Video Gold

Dance Like No One’s Watching is a Viral Video with different expectations and production values than a Music Video.

 

Keith’s video is charming spontaneous joyful dancing. You watch a viral video to see funny / unexpected / surprise… anyone can upload video from their phone.

 

The original FaceBook video wasn’t branded, it didn’t have titles. I wanted to see Keith’s contact information and keithmullins.ca plastered across my screen, I wanted to know he was riding the wave of his viral video… but then I wondered if branding it would have stolen the charm that caused enough shares to reach a viral threshold.

 

Universal appeal

Everyone wants to be that couple…

You can see something of yourself, something you want for yourself in the video…

You want to be that happy, brave, active, cool, carefree when you’re that age!

You want that so you share it!

 

Happy

It makes you smile… happy people like to share happy things.

 

There’s a story behind the video

“A couple asked to order water because they came to dance, this is what happened….”

This you a context and a reason to watch and a story to share with your friends. It made good copy on the regional news broadcasts and gave news producers a reason to interview Keith and run the story.

 

For more about crafting a story for yourself or your songs

Create your musical elevator pitch

 

Friction

As with any good song, there is friction – two (or more) ideas that don’t really fit, they push and pull, rubbing against each other creating a spark of interest.

There are several sources of friction in the video. The contrast / conflict between

Old vs New – elderly couple dancing like they are young

Older couple dancing to new music, if they had been dancing to an old song much of the appeal would have vanished

The gentleman dances like he knows the song, watch how he catches the stops in Keith’s arrangement.

One Man Band, Keith’s arrangement contrasts with the original, solo act singer, guitarist, percussionist instead of a funk band with a horn section creates friction.

 

Uptown Funk

The song was a viral hit with countless spin off versions. It’s easier to share, because others have already shared. The bonus twist – Keith’s funk isn’t staged or choreographed like most Uptown Funk videos.

As much as I wish Keith had been playing an original song, the video might not have had the same initial shares with a less familiar song.

 

the viral path: summary

  • Happy, charming video everyone can relate to
  • Caused people to comment/share quickly
  • Many commented that they watched it several times
  • It suddenly appeared in several different social media pockets
  • Causing people to see it shared from many sources
  • Suddenly the video seemed to be everywhere
  • Pushing it to a critical mass of shares
  • Regional news services picked up the story and the video
  • Sending it to national and international attention

 

15+ Million views, Dance Like No One’s Watching  is still happily charming new viewers….

 

 

Your Action Steps

 

Plant the Viral Seeds

1 Do the work, create the opportunity for golden moments

2 recognize golden moments

3 document golden moments

4 release it… into an active community

 

 

Keith Mullins

Subscribe to his newsletter, then listen & buy his music

Keithmullins.ca

 

Listen, then buy his music

www.reverbnation.com/keithmullins

 

YouTube Channel

https://www.youtube.com/user/TheKeithMullins

 

Dance Like No One’s Watching: Viral Video

Request licensing: licensing@storyful.com

 

 

 

 

Comment and share your thoughts…

How are you preparing so you can create and release viral quality songs, recordings, videos?

What work do you have to do?

 

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© Trevor Dimoff, EpicSongWriting.com, 2019