Money & Business

Going Viral: Meetings Mean Business Joins BuzzFeed Community

By / Mar 3, 2015 (Buzzfeed)

When it comes to creating viral content, one name stands out: BuzzFeed. Rather than try to mimic the social media site, the Meetings Mean Business campaign decided to go a different route. It joined BuzzFeed Community.

What’s the saying? If you can’t beat ’em, join ’em.

By writing our own posts, we are able to highlight the importance of the meetings and events industry in a fun, innovative way that connects to millennials and new business leaders.

The folks behind the Meetings Mean Business campaign wanted capture the essence of the viral media site Buzzfeed and apply its strategy of creating super-shareable content to spread the MMB message. Rather than rely on pure chance or try to latch onto another viral sensation, MMB decided to jump on a new tool called BuzzFeed Community, which lets registered users and organizations post BuzzFeed-style “listicles” to the site’s Community page. From there, articles can be picked up by the site’s editors and promoted to the BuzzFeed homepage.

MMB’s first Community post, “5 Things Your Next Meeting Is Giving Back to You,” went live last week, and, like any great listicle, it was filled with plenty of entertaining GIFs.

“By utilizing the BuzzFeed Community, Meetings Mean Business is able to reach a different readership than we have in the past—56 percent of BuzzFeed readers are between the ages of 18 and 34,” Nan Marchand Beauvois, senior director of national councils and general manager of the Educational Seminar for Tourism Organizations, said in a statement to Associations Now. “By writing our own posts, we are able to highlight the importance of the meetings and events industry in a fun, innovative way that connects to millennials and new business leaders.”

Could it work for your association? Getting involved in Community, Beauvois said, gives associations a unique way to engage with a younger audience that they might not normally connect with.

The platform’s creators shared four tips on “How to Go Viral” that everyone can learn from:

  • Make it a listicle. The internet loves lists. According to BuzzFeed, nine out of 10 lists will go viral.
  • Use the internet to your advantage. Facebook, Google+, Twitter, Reddit, Tumblr… The list of popular social media sites keeps getting longer. Get involved in all of them, and build a presence.
  • Appeal to readers’ vanity. Internet users love talking about themselves, which is why Buzzfeed’s ubiquitous quizzes are so popular. After taking a quiz, users often share their results on social platforms, and then their friends and followers will see it and do the same.
  • Stay relevant. Be topical, and make a comment on something current. A viral post contains several key components: an engaging, current headline; an eye-catching thumbnail photo; a detailed, yet succinct description; and a little bit of humor.

Has your association tried to reach a different audience with a tool like BuzzFeed Community? Share your experience—or any other tips you have on going viral—in the comments.

Rob Stott

Rob Stott is a contributing editor for Associations Now. More »

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