Whether you're a business or an individual, if you're making online videos, the odds are good you want them to be as high-quality as possible, appealing to as many potential viewers as possible. And sometimes the best way to get a feel for the pulse of the online video viewing public is to inspect and analyze the videos that have always had success.
And that's what this column is all about--examining the week's viral successes in the hopes that we can learn something we can apply to our own video marketing efforts. Let's get right to it:
Videos featuring outstanding musical performances go viral every week. But it's not every day you see a hit video star with both musical chops and a talent for impersonation.
I have no idea what the star of our first video is auditioning for, but I do know two things: he has incredible singing ability, and he sounds just like the late Freddie Mercury:
Just one day after that video started gaining traction, another sound-alike musical performance hit the home page of Reddit... this time featuring the audio twin of Pearl Jam's Eddie Vedder:
Matt Mullholland is a YouTube creator to keep an eye on--if you're not doing so already. He specializes in a capella performances where he himself provides all the audio for the voices and instruments. His newest trick is to take a classic film scene and recreate the entire audio track--music, dialogue, and effects--with his voice. The latest one is the skateboarding escape scene from Back to the Future... and it's incredible:
Even the Foo Fighters decided to sound like someone else this week, with an impression of a country western band. It's part of a pretty elaborate gag at the folks at Westboro Baptist, who were actually picketing an upcoming Foo Fighters concert when the impromptu concert began. Check it out:
Finally, we have Adam Ben Ezra, with his awesome take on the theme song from Dexter:
I've never hitchhiked a single time in my life, let alone a long distance. But this guy hitchhiked all the way across the United States... and turned it into a pretty great little short film as well:
One of my favorite videos in months is Alphabet 2. It's developmental spelling piece, which means the characters represent the meaning of the words they represent. And if that doesn't make any sense... just watch the video and it will:
Sit back, relax, and enjoy a "Glass of Sicily" with this great short film about wine country from Tasca D'Almerita:
Slow motion effects and a moody atmosphere make Tokyo Slo-Mode a must-see short film:
In a mashup of two of America's most cherished cultural icons, this week saw a viral video of Darth Vader throwing out the first pitch at a baseball game. It's actually a bit of marketing to promote the release of Star Wars on Blu-Ray, but that doesn't make it any less entertaining:
A crazy football play in a high school game? Yeah, everyone's seen one of those. But five of them in a row? That's unheard of. At least... it was until this week:
Brightly-colored tricycles racing down a mountain at 55 miles per hour? Sometimes it's better not to question how these things happen and just enjoy them:
What does it feel like to fly over planet Earth? Until space tourism becomes a reality, this video is as close as you're likely to get:
Several weeks ago, we featured a video in this column called Jedi Kittens. This week, we finally have the sequel: Jedi Kittens Strike Back, and it's even better than the original:
I can't decide what it is about this next video that I think is the funniest... the penguin attack... or the girlie shrieking reaction:
Have you ever been to Dragon Con? Me neither, but I imagine this video gives offers a pretty accurate approximation of the experience:
For those of you with an insatiable appetite for video... here are a few more:
- Lynx Effect Australia got some viral action by getting racy this week with a video explaining rugby rules... and starring scantily-clad ladies.
- A whole bunch of film and television stars collaborated on a cancer awareness campaign by recreating their favorite Star Wars moments.
- Whenever you're tasked with explaining a complicated topic, I find that using puppets tends to help hold people's interest.
- Here's an incredible piece of music created solely from the sounds of an everyday dry cleaner.
- I really enjoyed this "speed painting" piece, featuring everyone's favorite evil dark lord.
- How would your favorite movie characters look if they had Tom Selleck's mustache? A silly concept? Yes. But still entertaining.