Phil’s post yesterday got me thinking. At Museums and the Web a couple of weeks ago (check out Charlie’s post), Rob and I presented our paper about online video. At the end of our talk, I was asked if the IMA ever created viral video content. My response was immediate and along the lines of this: I’m not sure a museum could create a successful viral video. It would have to come from someone outside the museum and break lots of rules. But then Phil wrote about viral videos and I started thinking.
The IMA is not immune to the viral video idea. Our first ever YouTube video was conceived as a marketing, viral video in support of an exhibition. That was almost three years ago.
To date, this video has 4, 621 views. Not our most viewed video by any means. It never quite took off virally, but does serve as our lone example of a viral video attempt.
Can a museum/corporation/individual purposely set out to make a viral video? I always felt that a ‘viral video’ often exhibited a certain set of traits – unplanned, shock and awe, and the unexpected to name a few. And I’m not sure I include sketch comedy in this grouping – videos from Flight of the Conchords, Old Gregg or anything with Michael Cera are not viral – they’re comedy. Right?
So what about Aleksey Vayne’s video resume (below), Susan Boyle or an SNL short? Possibly. Some are unplanned (the outcomes anyway), some involve live TV and others are planned as something viral, where rules do not apply.
Phil reviewed some other viral videos yesterday, but it still seems to me that a true viral video usually involves an individual that happened to catch an unthinkable, unexpected, imperfect moment on camera. But I might be wrong. Can an organization self-produce, develop internally, and create a real viral video?
I did want to mention ArtBabble (of course I would) and a video we produced in time for the launch. I’m definitely not calling it viral, but it is most definitely a marketing video. We feature this on our front page and our views are currently around 11,603. We also have it on YouTube where we have 83. So enjoy our ArtBabble marketing video and please let us know how we would produce an IMA viral video. Phil might just do it. (OR – if you just want to share some of your favorite videos in the comments, that would be fine too.)