All posts in “viral video”

Dogs, Cats and Kids on Pianos Make for Great Viral Videos… (Sometimes Even When That’s Not the Intent)

A couple of weeks back I wrote a short handy list on how to make a viral video. It has a list of six tips to help you make a viral video (Including, but not limited to using dogs and cats). While utilizing these six tips won’t guarantee a viral sensation, it will increase your chances. If you are interested in that, take a look at: 6 Easy Tips For Making a Viral Video〜バイラル動画のための6つのポイント ( Today, I like to show and interesting bit about a child’s piano video that, while not a massive internet sensation, is a “viral hit” so-to-speak in a very narrow and niche market: Moms with little kids just starting out on the piano (well, that’s my guess.)

My buddy, Ken, and I have been making videos and TV programs for a long time. Making a viral video is an elusive goal. I’d love to be able to make a video with 10 million views. Heck, we’re very happy when some of the unknown bands that we made videos for surpass 20,000 views. We’ve also made some videos with some pretty well known musicians, and yet, in the music department, we’ve yet to come close to what I’d call a “Viral Video.” You know, my idea of a Viral Video is something like Psy’s “Gangnam Style” which, as of the moment of this writing, has nearly 2.3 billion views. If you can stand to watch it again, click here: Psy – Gangnam Style (

OK, well, maybe shooting for a few billion is asking a lot (but what’s a few billion between friends?)

It all depends on what your goal is for your video. In the 6 Easy Tips For Making a Viral Video〜バイラル動画のための6つのポイント it talks about quality production and professionalism… But there is something else that can make a video viral and I like to call it “Magic.”

What is this “Magic”? Take a look at this video of this little boy playing the piano. It was uploaded by his mom for purely posterity’s sake. I know all about this video. The intention of the mom in taking this video was only for posterity’s sake; she told me that she didn’t expect the video to ever get anymore than a dozen views or so. They made the video on an iPhone, one take. They did no promotion; no blogging, no Facebook, no nothing.

And yet, this video has over 18,000 views as of the writing of this blog post! How did that happen? I know MANY bands who would be so happy if their videos ever got 5,000 views! But a little kid playing Tchaikovsky at the piano shot with an iPhone and they are getting near 20,000 views???

How did that happen?

This video, for some reason, must be getting watched by other moms with sons or daughters who are practicing the piano. So the word spreads. The only word I have for it is “Magic.”

Tchaikovsky – Sleeping Beauty チャイコフスキー 眠りの森の美女のワルツ ピアノ

Actually, I know the whole story about this boy as I am proud to say that he is my son. Yet, I have to admit that I am amazed that a few of his videos have surpassed 15,000 views. I am amazed because I often make videos with artists and I do promote the videos, yet sometimes they just don’t “take off.”

I know for a fact my wife didn’t promote any of our son’s videos, yet he can hit over 18,000 views! Wow!

Here’s a great one I made for him and his mom, called Chopin Impromptu No. 1

So, see? the Chopin Impromptu has very few views but it is professionally made. The iPhone one? It’s magic! (And a head slapper for me!) Chuckle!

I hope you have more “Magic” in your lives.


If you are interested in a professional quality video for your child’s performance, please read: A Family Heirloom for ¥70,000? Create Your Child’s Performance Video That You Will be Proud of Forever! (¥50000-create-your-childs-performance-video-that-you-will-be-proud-of-forever/)

We’d love to create dreams together with you!


At Robot55 we make video productions for businesses and services and products, but we also pride ourselves on making videos for art and music. Our starting price is ¥70,000 and we are sure we can work out something that fits your budget. Oh, and we love making band videos too! Contact us!


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6 Easy Tips For Making a Viral Video〜バイラル動画のための6つのポイント

Well, have you ever wondered why some videos go viral? Have you ever wondered how to make a viral video? Well, today, you might be in luck; here’s more free tips.

We been working on producing a viral video for a famous Japanese company. I hope to be able to show that one to everyone soon; we are all expecting that it will be a hit. But in the meantime, to that end, I have been researching data and studying how to make a viral video. You know making a viral video isn’t just blind luck; there is a method to the madness. The making of a viral video comes down to three things: 1) A scientific approach (understanding your target audience and they way they think) and; 2) The artistic touch (humor or a great idea) and; 3) Luck.

Yes, of course, like with everything in life, luck is important. While I cannot guarantee that you will make a viral video by following my points below, I can guarantee that these points will increase your odds of making one. There are 6 key factors in making a viral video and that you definitely will benefit by reading this article.

1) Be funny or outrageous!

Funny and outrageous is probably the best way to go viral. Problem is, how many of us are “funny”? And, even if we are, for business use, is it widely acceptable? (I mean is it “family friendly?)

I write, produce and direct an extremely popular Sunday morning show in Japan. We are pretty outrageous (by Japan standards) for our humor. In our program, we often make “corners” in our show for sponsors. I’ve noticed one thing about big company sponsors; they love you doing outrageous stuff and think it’s hilarious on your show, but they don’t want you doing that on their sponsored part of the show! I mean, they laugh out loud when you make jokes that they are not a part of; but when they get involved they suddenly become VERY conservative.

It reminds me of something I was told many years ago by a Program Director at a big Tokyo radio station (when my program’s rating were breaking the charts). He called me to his office and said, “I want you guys to be funny… But try not to be so funny.” No kidding. I told him that we are either funny or we aren’t… But it is important to keep your target audience in mind!

Like I said, people at companies like it if you do wild and crazy stuff, and “push the envelope,” but they don’t like it when they are a part of it, and their (your) boss is breathing down their (your) necks. So keep that in mind.

Being funny but being widely acceptable? Wow! Of course, that ups the ante quite a lot and makes things much more difficult: How to be funny, yet not take the chance of offending anybody? I suggest talking with your staff! Use the funny and crazy people inside your company or hire professionals (and I mean people who do write humor or comedy for a living! It can be expensive, but it ups your odds of success.)

Here’s a good idea that can’t possible offend anyone (except this kid’s mom!)

2) Think “How would a Las Vegas Magician do it?”

When making your video, remember to try to think like a Las Vegas musician. Remember the last time you saw a good magician? When the magician showed you a trick that made you go “Wow!” You immediately wanted to see it again and you wanted your friends and family to see it too, right? That’s a secret to getting a video go viral.

3) Promote ONE idea and ONE idea only. Don’t Hard Sell!

This is actually kind of easy. Of course you all have heard the “KISS Principle”? The KISS Principle is: Keep it simple, stupid! If you have a great idea, then don’t clutter the message with extraneous information. A great example is the video below. At the end, it shows the product. Simple and sweet!

Now, imagine if, at the end of the commercial, they went through a litany of information like: ingredients, a sale, what grocery stores were carrying the product, their new gallon can? That would just ruin the short and simple message. So keep it as short as possible. Remember: “Brevity is the soul of wit” – Shakepeare

4) Use highly quality production

There’s nothing that more of a turnoff to your video than poor production. The three worst offenders are: Poor lighting; poor sound; and poor or out of focus camera work.

Now, if you are a small company, then professional video services might be just out of reach of your budget. But fear not! I give free video tips every week on this very webpage! Please check out our regular column: Video Tips! Make Your Own Video For Your Business For Free! Part 2〜ビジネス動画を自分で作ってみよう!その2〜 (

Here is a TV commercial that I worked on and that is my voice at the end. But I think this is a fine example of the kind of idea that is “cute” and could go viral (if it weren’t on TV constantly already). The idea is simple and funny and I think everyone can relate to it and it is a hit TV commercial.

The guys can especially relate to the second one where they were embarrassed in front of the beautiful women because of their silly antics!

5) Promote!

Once the video is made, you must promote! And that means getting everyone down to the computer keyboards and posting the video link anywhere and everywhere possible. And I don’t mean just do it one day and then drop it; you must have a thought out plan of action that runs a few months. Rome wasn’t built in a day, you know! This doesn’t happen by magic, it takes effort. The video on the company webpage, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, company blogs, Linkedin, all social media and everywhere is critical for your success. Get your team to think about possibilities. Make a daily schedule showing assignments.

Of course you could spend a ton of money on promoting your video, but, then again, doesn’t that sort of defeat the purpose? You intend upon making a viral because it is great promotion; it is believable (because regular people are promoting you) and, so, it is cost effective.So we don’t want to spend a ton of money on advertising for our advertisement (sounds absurd when it is put that way, doesn’t it?)

But what to do? Need a good idea? Need to “think out of the box”? Check this out:

Ever heard of a Greek artist named “Stefano”? He is drawing pictures on Euro bank notes and has become famous for doing so.Will he become rich? I don’t know, but he has very wide name recognition and hasn’t spent much money, only time and effort.

Stefanos has hijacked the euro banknotes including small characters to transform the traditional engravings into scenes to protest and promote himself (lots of good art is protest, is it not?) Of course, I won’t condone this (wink! wink!) but, you have to admit that, by doing this, Stefano has made a big name for himself… A what did it cost him? Not much. He’s all over the European and worldwide press.

Here’s a few examples. This is pure genius in viral marketing.

Stefano and skateboarders. This is some of his "safe" designs.

Stefano and skateboarders. This is some of his “safe” designs.

Stefano pushes the envelope...

Stefano pushes the envelope…

6) Keep it short!

From our post entitled: 90% of All People Say a Video Helps To Decide a Purchase!〜購入の決め手はビデオ広告!( helps-to-decide-a-purchase/)

According to research conducted by Jun Group (2011), videos that are 15 seconds or shorter are shared 37 percent more often than those that last between 30 seconds and 1 minute. If you make your video longer, that stat goes down. Those shorties are only shared 18% more often than videos of longer than 1 minute.

Also, according to research by Visible Measures, 20% of your viewers will click away from a video in 10 seconds or fewer. And it doesn’t get a lot better than that. You’ll lose about 1/3 of your viewers by 30 seconds, 45% of them by 1 minute and almost 60% by 2 minutes. 

So keep it short!

And finally, #7! (OK, I said there were six tips, but there’s 7! So sue me!)

7) Use a cat!

(Chuckle!) When all else fails, then use a cat. This is, I think, the Hail Mary pass of all ways to do a viral video… But hey, Grumpy Cat has over 7.5 million “Likes” on Facebook, so who am I to argue with a successful cat? I wanted to use a cat for the top photo of this blog post, but we don’t have a cat…

So, I’m hoping instead of always peeing on the rug, our dog can get a few million Facebook friends and start making millions too! I’m going to name him, “Sort of Grumpy Dog.”

If you have any questions at all, please feel free to contact me, Mike, or Ken at Robot55: Email:

We promise to help you, even with free advice, if you need it. Let’s have fun and make fun videos for our lives and our businesses! Because having a good life and making money is fun too!


Want to see some videos we have made for happy customers in the last few weeks at a reasonable price?

See our Youtube page:


For more free tips:

Video Tips! Make Your Own Video For Your Business For Free! Pt. 1 (
Video Tips! Make Your Own Video For Your Business For Free! Part 2 (
Make Your Own Video For Your Business For Free! Part 3 – You Need a Map: How to Write a Script! (
Video Tips! Make Your Own Video For Your Business For Free! Pt. 4((