A few weeks back I got a request in my inbox that asked if I could help out with a launch of a video on YouTube. Unlike other requests that I receive most of the time, this one was from a person who wasn’t looking to beat the system. He just wanted help with the release of his first single on YouTube.
I read his story and decided to take a call.
On the other end of the phone was Pierre. In his car, with his parents. The first call took about 15 minutes. We talked, I ran through the broad strokes of what a launch on YouTube is about, we laughed, and I guess, decided there and then that we were going to work together.
Another difference from other assignments I take on, was that I decided to do this one out of the fun of it. It felt good, taking on an assignment that I felt like doing. It was evident that Pierre loved what he was doing, something I sometimes forget, when working for big brands who just want the next viral hit. He got to me.
And since he did, I have decided that this launch will be completely different, 100% transparent and just like the project itself – for the mere fun of it!
Thus. I have decided to make this the worlds first ever public launch of a YouTube viral.
This is a huge risk as most of my work is usually being done behind closed doors. I don’t know if it works when in the light of day. But I know that we will do it for real this time around, and thus, we have no reason to stay in the backrooms of Internet tactics.
So. For all that it is worth. Here we go! (I will explain all the steps as I get time. Also, we’ll soon launch a live stream on Ustream to answer any questions.)
07:30 Swedish Time – 30 views – Start TrueView spend (50USD) in Asia
07:35 Swedish Time – 31 views – Contact first influentials in Asian countries
07:36 Swedish Time – 32 views – Begin contacting Facebook pages managed by community managers in Asia
08:30 Swedish Time – 104 views – Curve is looking upwards – moving over to Twitter
09:30 Swedish Time – 200 views – Moving back to Facebook to contact groups and talk to responders
09:40 Swedish Time – 301 views – YouTube view count delay in action
10:45 Swedish Time – we now have a projected view count of 3500 views the last 60 minutes – we now start contacting YouTube influentials
This is going quite well. The numbers are small, but we are just in the early stages. This is not one of those crazy seeding sprees where we have a budget. Total launch budget this time is 200 USD meaning we have to rely on copywriting, relevance and digging into demand and where it is at. Most of what has happened so far is that we’ve been in touch with a lot of people who might like the video. Now that the public increase in view count has been halted by YouTube we have to continue seeding the video below the surface. Once our vanity metrics become visible again we can push for broader media.
11:13 Swedish Time – 11 251 views (according to real time analytics) – Updating social accounts to take on new traffic
11:56 Swedish Time – 14 753 views (estimated by real time analytics) – Now setting up live stream on Ustream
12:00 Swedish Time – LUNCH
13:14 Swedish Time – Back from lunch Up on Ustream
13:45 Swedish Time – Our Usteam went down so we are setting it up again. Back in about 5 minutes.
13:45 Swedish Time – We are soon looking to move onto the Twitter promotion. The views are slowly coming through to the public view and so we can start moving onto introducing the video to more people
14:01 Swedish Time – We have relaunched our Facebook Page promotion contacting pages that might be interested to use the video as content for their followers
So far it is actually going a bit better than expected but we still have to work for every view. It is not that it picks up on its own. We believe that the critical mass will be in the vicinity of 20-25 000 views considering the number of comments and shares we’ve received so far. We are now sure we will be able to manually work this up to over 100k views which would be pretty decent considering our budget, but we feel like this song has so much more potential, so we will most likely continue to press it. Remember, we haven’t even begun with pitching stories about the story… except for perhaps… this one 😉
14:23 Swedish Time – Ustream is back up and we’re moving onto better things to do – Facebook PAGES and Tweeps!! Don’t hesitate to help us out here. Either by commenting on the Ustream stream or by simply helping us get this out on twitter. You can also help us pitch this to Mashable by retweeting this tweet.
14:45 Swedish Time – We have now moved onto setting up the Twitter activities for the US. Started to write messages and prepare our first press contacts.
15:20 Swedish Time – We just had our first viewers and shares of the video from Mexico – meaning the world across the Atlantic has woke up
16:38 Swedish Time – Ok so now I got back from some meetings and it is time to start with the outbound Twitter work 😀 tihi….
16:45 Swedish Time – Told the people in the US to start working on their contacts.
17:13 Swedish Time – So. Now we are back on Facebook sourcing pages that seem to be updating regularly and where the content might be inline with our video. This whole live blogging, live feeding, live live live is making me a bit nuts though… haha…
Without the artificial seeding in the beginning of a project, it goes so much slower as we do not have the natural “reason to speak” we usually do when we have a lot of views of the bat to come running with. However, pace is picking up again. Would be wonderful if the YouTube analytics would be more advanced so we could pick up more of the stuff happening there. We know that some people has embedded the video, but without using the nasty crawlers we cannot find them right away. I think this is a healthy experience considering how simple this is to do with the cheats :). If you feel like helping us out doing this the right way, meaning if you like the video, if you like the story in the description and if you feel like this is a fun thing to do. Look below for some tasks!
18:00 Swedish Time – Just completed the Facebook round for the pages we believe might be interested. Now we just wait 24 hours before we send them a friendly reminder ;). Also, the guys over in the US have started working for real and we should be seeing some results coming up in short. We now see a steady stream of new viewers coming in without us actually seeding that heavily. A few minutes ago there was a bump but just about every other second we are getting a new view. This is nice and perhaps a signal that we will not have to work that much more before it starts carrying itself.
18:12 Swedish Time – We can now see that the video is picking up pace. It has gone from an average of about 0.3 views per minute to 2.1 views per minute as the baseline. We are going to keep an eye on this and see if this is a trend or if it just a result of some link slowly building somewhere. Either or, this is fun as we discount the spikes when we look at this metric – which is in essence the only “go to sleep”-metric we can look at. Once that picks up pace, the work is done and the video has its own life.
18:43 Swedish Time – The organic view count on YouTube is picking up pace and we are now at about 3 views per minute. As you understand this is still REALLY low, but this is without any spikes and the growth has been constant now for a few hours. Hopefully we will see a steady growth over the evening with a few more spikes.
So. A quick wrap up. We started the day with some TureView purchases of about 50 USD. We then went on to contact people we knew over in south east Asia, then we started contacting some big Facebook pages and Twitter accounts. After that it has been a long day of writing up stories and contacting people. And that is essentially what we have done. As more info gets in, we will be able to give you more information as to where the traffic came from. Especially those sources that are now picking up pace.
00:30 Swedish Time – Got a message from Pierre with a link to Toronto Star writing about his video. One of their “satire” writers wrote about the video. We contacted the author and apologised for our somewhat brute “hello message”. Ha ha… why is it always the shortest, most spammy of our messages that get through ;). Got a really cool answer back. Cudos to them for having both humor and the professionalism to deal with people like us 😀
WANT TO HELP OUT? TASKS:
- Retweet this tweet to help us pitch this process to Mashable
- Comment on this reddit and give us tips on how to move forward