David Papp Blog

Case study of the side effects of viral YouTube videos

Four years ago in October 2012, I posted a quick video after getting the idea from an article I read. I never did anything else with it and it just sat there in YouTube-land obtaining views. Over the past 4 years, I obtained an average of 100 views per day along with a couple Likes per day. This resulted in 100,000 views over the course of those 4 years. Then something happened on August 24, 2016…

Wow! How is this possible? I clicked on the “Analytics” button on my YouTube video and start digging.

Interesting, Suggested Videos! Let’s dig deeper:

So I visit the number 1 video in the list and see this:

Here is a video that someone put together, a 24(!!!) hour video where they slowed down the sound. And this managed to go “viral”. It was posted on July 1st and almost 2 months later my video that has been in YouTube-land for 4 years starts to appear on the “Suggested Videos” of his video page. So I end up getting roughly 10% of his traffic as secondary visits. Fascinating! Over the course of 2 weeks, here is the “new” traffic that my video obtains:

Subsequent to this, I decide to post an updated video as an experiment. My original video covered Windows 3.1 to Windows 7. This updated video covers Windows 1 to 10 and I placed an annotation on top of the original video linking people to the new one. I am curious to see what happens.

Here is a link to the original video from 4 years ago (look at the total views):

Here is a link to the new updated video: