Long live the lesson of April the Giraffe!

Although Rahm Emmanuel has more recently popularized this adage, it was apparently Winston Churchill who first said, “Never let a good crisis go to waste.”

In the world of content marketing, a similar truism has surfaced, and it might be expressed like this: “Never let a viral current event go to waste.”

I was reminded of this recently when I was reviewing my weekly analytics on Twitter. One piece of content I shared stood out in terms of how well my audience responded to it. Here’s the Tweet I’m referring to:

When I saw how many people engaged with this Tweet, I clicked over to the article it was linking to and discovered that Stephanie Melish’s Entrepreneur piece had been shared 3,100 times.

Stephanie got a lot of mileage out of April the Giraffe’s 15 minutes of pregnant fame!

This reminds us of one of the easiest and best ways to occasionally supercharge your content marketing and blogs: Piggyback on a current event that is going viral.

The events to concentrate on are those that are sweeping through popular culture. You probably remember the blue dress controversy, for example. Also, movies, sporting events, and celebrities fall into this category.

Most of these viral events come to mind easily; you just need to find a way to leverage them so they provide a framework (and headline) for a piece of content you want to create. However, if you’re at a loss for what is on people’s minds, you can lean on Google Trends to give you some hints.

However, I would trust my personal judgment more than Google Trends because people may not be searching for the day’s top viral content. After all, the thing that makes something viral is the fact that it is doing a good job propagating itself. If you have to search for viral content, it can’t be all that viral.

So the next time the whole world is tuned into a webcam following the life of a pregnant giraffe, jump on the bandwagon, create a piece of content around the event, and promote it like crazy via your social media accounts.

Image: Giraffe closeup head 2, by Duncan Rawlinson (thelastminute) from Vancouver, BC (Flickr) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons