For some, virality is not just an occurrence but an actual business model…But don’t be so quick to “jump” on that train!
Jeff Goldblatt, Founder & Creative Director of the Rejection Hotlines which developed multiple hotlines that drew over 475 million calls worldwide(check out his new new THE WHATEVER NETWORK) talks with us how a little rejection turned into such a phenomenon. And why gaining virality may be just as much a science as an art.
So I’ll give you the quick overview of how Jeff and team actually turned “rejection” into a business. He and friends are sitting, eating, drinking, being merry, and notice a guy (maybe a bit toolish) hitting a girl…who just wasn’t having it and she kind of made a scene. Jeff and friends think, there’s gotta be a better way for both parties…girl can deflect what she doesn’t want, and guy can rid himself of public humiliation.
The Rejection Hotline was born! Jeff decided to create a funny voicemail , that started something like this, “Hello. This is NOT the person you were trying to call! You’ve reached THE REJECTION HOTLINE® because, unfortunately, the person who gave you this number did NOT want you to have their REAL number…” check out the full version here . Jeff’s friends thought it was such a riot, they started passing it around to other friends…The army grew from there.
The Rejection Hotline + Humor Hotlines grew to over 2500 lines, and 7 figures in annual revenue, all run by a small team that took the idea of going “viral” and turned it into a science. Jeff spoke with us about the science, the creative, and why everyone thinks they can go “viral”.
Let’s say this right up front (well, 5 or 6 paragraphs in) being funny, engaging, entertaining, captivating all the time is a shit load of work, and that’s where the science/data came into play. Jeff and his team were constantly creating new content they thought could hit a different pulse, but what so many people miss in the “viral game” is that they (you/me) do not get to decide what is cool…THE MARKET DOES! The viewer decides, “do I want to give 30 seconds, 1 minute, 5 minutes to this random shit?”
Jeff and his team understood this, and had a plan of how to execute, distribute, and test what would click and gain traction. It was not a post and pray mentality…Which is what many do out there! So rule number 1 and most important…Have a plan. Even if it’s shit, you’ll still learn that the plan was SHIT and not do it again. Another important piece of the equation is understanding your metrics, if you’re looking to turn attention into business.
I’ll use simple metrics for those that say they are going to build their massive business on YouTube. Assume the CPM (cost per 1000 impressions) of the ads placed within your content is $4.00, then assume your first video crushed it and received 20,000 views…Your booming business just made $80.00. Well done! Did that pay even pay for the production of your video? I hope so, but most of the time it doesn’t. What the real players in the game (like RH) understand is that one video may have the bones to be something great, so they tweak it…Change the length, the punchline, the CTA, the medium used to distribute, then throw it out there again. Maybe this time, the video takes hold and get’s 1MM hits…and with that same CPM you just made $4,000, not so bad for a few tweaks!
The point is this, just saying you are going to create a viral video, blog, meme, gif, does not mean a damn thing. Saying you have a plan to help make your engaging content potentially go viral is very different. Do your research, be creative, track your results, and make adjustments…You just may be the next person to turn Rejection into millions!
Check out our full episode with Jeff on BRICKS 2 BANDWITH here .