How to Create a Viral Campaign on Instagram

Ask any rising influencer about their dream and they’ll give you one word: Viral. Going viral means your content has a lot of eyes on it. It means you’ve mastered the art of standing out in a sea of competition. It means you can expect an increase in traffic to your profile. Sometimes this starts with a strategy, and other times it’s good luck. Either way, going viral garners attention to your brand, but how do you create a campaign that actually stirs this much attention? Read on to find out. 

1. Look at other campaigns that have worked 

We’re not recommending a “monkey see, monkey do” sort of approach here. We’re recommending that you look to successful campaigns, influencers and people who have done it before. That doesn’t mean you should replicate other viral campaigns (definitely don’t!), but instead, use it as a reference point. If you noticed that a brand was successful with a product launch, study what they did. Did they use TV? Did they only promote on social media? Who represented the brand? How did they connect with their audience? And most importantly, what did they do that was memorable? 

Finding and capitalizing on that memorable moment is key. In order to go viral, your campaign must be something unique. It doesn’t come easy, but when it does, it can be really successful. 

2. Look at other campaigns that have not worked 

On the flip side, it’s also helpful to look at campaigns that tried to go viral but ended up flopping. Think about it — if the ultimate goal is to go viral and only a limited number of influencers and brands do go viral, the odds aren’t in our favor. Since you’re doing your research now, the odds are in your favor, but for your average joe who is trying to launch a campaign… we can learn from a lot of failures. 

3. Keep going for it 

Going viral doesn’t always happen overnight (for the lucky ones, it might), so don’t get discouraged if you have to push several campaigns before picking up traction. Learn from the campaigns that go well for you and the campaigns that don’t go well. Most importantly, make sure that each time you try again, you try harder. 

4. Tell a story 

At the root of every good campaign is a story. Whether it evokes laughter or tears or anything in between, it all comes down to the way you tell the story. When you’re evaluating your campaign, take a step back and make sure there’s a story being told. 

5. Create an objective 

There’s a common misconception that viral content is created on a whim. While there are some rare times when this is the case, it’s not the norm. Usually, viral content is strategic and it comes down to a business objective. To establish your objective, start by asking yourself what you plan to do with your campaign. Is it…

  • To inform?
  • To entertain?
  • To persuade?
  • To make people laugh? 
  • To draw awareness to something? 

Those are a few starter questions, and you may have an entirely different objective — but it’s a good way to get the ball rolling. 

Ready to go viral? As you now know, it’s easier said than done. But we have no doubt that you can go viral. Start by looking at what other people are doing well and not doing well, never give up, and make sure you’re working toward your goals — and telling a story along the way. Or, seek help from the pros. We offer Viral Strategy packages for both influencers and businesses for as little as $2,500. Interested? Reach out to us at