This is going to be the feel good hit of the summer. I have to thank Nalts for bringing to my attention what might be the greatest marriage proposal in the history of YouTube. A man created a custom movie trailer as part of an elaborate in-theater proposal, somehow convinced the movie theater to play his work amongst the normal previews, and then uploaded the whole thing to YouTube to make women cry and men feel ashamed.
Just when you think you've seen the most creative marriage proposal on YouTube, another comes along to take the crown. The trailer created by "Matt" consists mostly of him asking for his girlfriend's father's blessing and then racing to the movie theater, where he gets down on one knee and proposes. Outstanding.
Take a look at this adorable video that's a lock for viral success:
I love that initial moment when she thinks she recognizes the voices in the trailer, but the whole thing is great. I especially enjoyed the humor–when he stops for popcorn before going into the auditorium, or when he spills that popcorn in a slow-motion race through the hallways. Good stuff.
There will always be a market for this kind of video, as viewers have an enormous appetite for the romantic and the heartwarming. It's extending well beyond marriage proposals, too, as the recent trend in elaborate prom-invitation videos shows. Audiences just love a good, old-fashioned romance. When there's a bit of creativity and ingenuity involved as well, it's even more likely to get lots of attention. This video was guaranteed to go viral before it ever got uploaded to YouTube.
Kudos to the theater for allowing this all to take place–and they're about to get a huge amount of free publicity when this video goes nuclear.
This whole thing is a good object lesson in the power of emotion. Videos that trigger emotional responses–branded or amateur–stand a better chance of going viral. The stronger the viewer's emotional response to the video, the more likely they are to share it. We've seen brands taking advantage of this phenomenon more and more of late–like the "Dear 16-year-old Me" hit last week, or the classic viral hit of the dog welcoming his soldier-owner home from Iraq.
Great video doesn't equal great viral content. It's easy to get caught up in high-definition quality, editing tricks, or audio mixing… and sometimes we lose sight of what makes people forward videos to friends. Too often, we video marketers try to squeeze too much message into our videos. And message is fine, in and of itself. But we can't forget the emotional component every viral video needs to gain traction. Without it, even interested viewers will find themselves less likely to spread the word.