Six months ago, if you had mentioned Dollar Shave Club to a room of people, you would have gotten all blank stares (even though the company has been around since June of last year). Today, there are over 4.5 million people who would nod their heads and smile. 4.5 million YouTube views. In just a few weeks. How did they do it?

A viral video incorporates strong planning, careful execution, and a little bit of luck. Fortunately for those of us who have never won the lottery, the strong planning and careful execution part carries a little more weight than the luck part. Can you design a video and guarantee that it will go viral? Maybe not, but by incorporating these lessons from Dollar Shave Club, you can at least ensure that it earns the right to be seen and shared.

Don’t Take Yourself Too Seriously

Humor is something Dollar Shave Club does really well. Seriously. There’s hardly a straight line in the entire video. But they’re not just cracking jokes either. Some of the humor is obvious and some is a little more under the radar, but all of it works together to communicate the vital information you need to know about the company. And it leaves you with that “You’ve gotta see this!” feeling.

Create a Unified Approach

Take a long look at your existing website and craft your video so that it supports your current marketing strategy. When you visit the Dollar Shave Club site, every element hangs together and sends the same vibes you received in the video. Your website visitors shouldn’t wonder whether you’re the same company as the one that produced the video they loved.

Put the Most Important Stuff First

In the first ten seconds, we know what Dollar Shave Club does, how much it costs, and what the quality of the product is. We get our questions answered: How can they afford it and are the razors any good? If we decide to stop viewing (which we won’t, because their fabulous style holds our attention) we still have everything we need to know to pique our interest and entice us over to the website.

Put a Face On Your Company

Even if you don’t have the marketing background and camera-ease that Dollar Shave Club’s founder, Mike Dubin does, it still helps viewers connect with your company when you put a face behind the name. Make the story human and people will relate to it.

Creating videos people love begins with understanding how to communicate a message they can relate to and want to share. After that, who knows? You just might win the lottery.

About James Trumbly:
Director of Business Development for eConnect Email, an email marketing software company. James enjoys spending time at the beach and traveling in his free time. Follow him on twitter @eConnectEmail