In today's digital landscape, the power of viral content cannot be overstated – going viral can make stars of those featured. It might be a record-breaking YouTuber, a video clip, or it could be a song.
A single song that goes viral has the potential to reach millions of listeners, catapulting an artist's career to new heights. An artist who goes viral can find a whole new audience, all willing to watch shows, buy merchandise, and listen to music,
All it takes is one song, and the world can find out who you are. How can you write music that is going to capture people's imagination, teasing shares out of them? This article explores strategies for writing music geared toward going viral.
Creating Memorable Hooks
One of the most crucial elements in writing music that goes viral is the creation of memorable hooks. A hook is a catchy and memorable part of a song that sticks in the listener's mind. It could be a catchy melody, a repetitive chorus, or a unique instrumental riff. Singer-songwriter Bacon James explains how writing a memorable melody can help a song stick in a listener’s mind, and that is especially relevant to going viral. Hooks grab attention and make a song instantly recognizable, increasing the likelihood of it being shared and going viral.
Lil Nas X created an infectious hook in his song Old Town Road. "I'm gonna take my horse to the old town road" was a driving force behind the viral success of this song. The simple yet catchy melody became a viral sensation across social media platforms and propelled Lil Nas X to stardom.
Incorporating Relatable Themes
Writing music with relatable themes is another effective way to create a viral sensation – if people feel what you write, they’re more likely to share it. Think about what you share on social media – it’s often something that resonates. When listeners connect with the lyrics and themes of a song, they are more likely to share it with others who share similar experiences or emotions. Incorporating relatable themes can generate a sense of community and encourage widespread sharing.
33-year-old Ren Gill is a great example of this. His song Hi Ren deals with mental health themes and, at times, is raw and emotional. Musically, it features just a single acoustic guitar, but it is written with such ferocity and genuine anguish that people around the world are connected with it. Within the first few months of 2023, it had surpassed 1m views; as of early July 2023, it hit 16 million. It’s the perfect example of incorporating relatable themes, no matter how tense or testing.
Leveraging Trends and Challenges
Tapping into existing trends and challenges can give your music an instant boost in virality. Keep an eye on social media platforms, viral challenges, and popular memes, and find ways to incorporate them into your music. By aligning your content with ongoing trends, you increase the chances of it being shared, remixed, and reinterpreted by a wider audience.
Lottery (Renegade) by K CAMP gained viral popularity through the Renegade Challenge on TikTok. The song was used as the soundtrack for a dance challenge that went viral, attracting millions of users to create their own videos and share them across various platforms.
Optimizing for Shareability
To maximize the potential for your music to go viral, it's essential to optimize for shareability. There are several factors that can come into play here. One is song length – it is important to keep the song concise, as shorter songs are more likely to be shared in their entirety. Having memorable lyrics also helps. Having words that are easy to remember and resonate with listeners. Also, make the song easy to get into – going viral can mean having to grab someone’s attention immediately, so look to write an engaging introduction. If you grab attention right from the start to encourage listeners to share the song from the beginning. Of course, people only share good tracks that have strong sound, so make sure your music sounds polished and professional.
All of these factors can be heard in Dance Monkey by Tones and I. It showcases the power of optimizing for shareability, and the video has been viewed more than two billion times on YouTube. With its catchy melody, relatable lyrics, and energetic production, it quickly gained traction and became a viral hit, leading to massive global success.
Submitted by Aliyah Cox
Exclusive for Qmusicpromotions.com