You may never make it to “Damn, Daniel” status, but these tips will help your content gain major Internet attention.

While humorous memes and gifs certainly dominate the Internet, there are also business-driven strategies you can employ to make your content go viral. From Thinx underwear’s viral subway campaign featuring an innuendo-laden grapefruit, to Dollar Shave Club’s bizarre (but highly memorable) video ad entitled “Our Blades Are F**cking Great”, brands that create viral content have enjoyed massive success in terms of user engagement and ROI.

There are a few key components to viral content — timeliness, relevance, creativity, uniqueness — the list goes on. But the first thing to consider is your target audience. Who are they? What are their interests? What type of content are they most likely to share with their friends?

Once you’ve answered these questions, you’re ready to get your next viral campaign off the ground. Keep these five tips in mind to ensure that you hit it out of the ballpark:

1. If It Bleeds, It Leads

Shocking content gets people’s attention. A great tool for gauging how catchy your titles are is CoSchedule’s Headline Analyzer, which will grade your headlines and give you tips for improvement.

2. Embrace Brand Pulsing

People don’t like being overtly persuaded to purchase a product or service. Because of this, many savvy advertisers utilize a technique known as “brand pulsing”, in which a brand image is unobtrusively placed throughout an ad. When you’re developing your concept — whether for an ad, a blog post, or a social campaign — ask yourself if the story would still work if you removed your brand from it. If the answer is yes, then your audience is likely to be compelled by the story (and not turned off by a hard sell).

3. Employ Primary Narratives

Create an engaging narrative, with the aim of developing an emotional connection between the reader and one or a few key “characters” in an ad. People invest in gripping, relatable stories, so give them a reason to stick around and see how it ends.

4. Don’t be a Bore

In an era of emojis and snap stories, human attention spans have shrunk to accommodate neat, micro-narratives. Make sure you’re not only capturing your viewers’ attention from the get-go, but that you’re keeping it with engaging, thought-provoking (and in the case of the video below, even irreverent) content.

5. End On A High Note

People love to share content they feel good about — ever heard of “#inspo”? Leave your audience feeling empowered and motivated, and they’ll forever associate your brand with that “conquer the world” feeling.

Above all else, ensure that your storytelling is meticulously crafted, and that it reflects the brand you want people to remember.

Longneck and Thunderfoot offer content marketing services and strategies to transform your company blog into an authoritative trade publication. Click to learn more about how to produce great content and prove ROI on your marketing efforts.

Author Ami Foote

A graduate of the University of South Carolina, Ami is a staff writer at L&T. She has previously written for Ireland.com, Lowe’s Home Improvement, Britax Child Safety, and a variety of non-profits around the country. On a good day, you can find Ami obsessively consuming one or all of the following: folk music, NPR, black coffee, jeopardy, or Guinness.

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