The world is one giant echo chamber. It is a heady cocktail of a cacophony of sounds and undisturbed silences. As the needle of the world swings between the two, one often comes across something that makes heads turn and lifts everyone in a single giant embrace. Life is funny, indeed. And for 23-year-old Albanian Gentjan Cekeli, founder of the news website JOQ Albania, who paved his way into the pages of the Guinness Book of World Records this year, life is a stage that has unconventional ways of putting the spotlight on you. We sat down with the young entrepreneur to get his thoughts on setting a remarkable record and to know three ways to create viral content that ticks!
Q: Can you tell us the story behind your Guinness World Record?
GC: Sure. I am passionate about dialogue, as I believe it has the power to create peace and end conflicts. Driven by that sentiment, I created a post on my FB page. In it, I said ‘Jeta Osh Qef’ or ‘Life is funny.’ I guess these three words and the essence behind them resonated with people on some personal and profound level as about 1 million of them contributed their thoughts on that single post. This was the most commented upon Facebook post ever, and hence the world record. For me, it was satisfying to see so many diverse thoughts on such a simple phrase.
Q: According to you, what are the three best ways to create viral content?
GC: Entertainment is one of the core assets of viral content for which the internet and social media have become the main gateways. To get people’s attention, give them something they can have a chuckle about, something that makes them ponder, and something that resonates with them. With these three ingredients, you can keep your content fresh and tempting.
Another thing to keep in mind is relevance. Your content cannot be stuck on a hamster wheel. It must be part and parcel of the times. And our times are changing almost daily. With the world connected now more than ever, global events and crises reach people in a matter of seconds. This rise in the availability of information and access to it also has piqued people’s interest in the world. Starting from unconventional stories in your backyard, keep an eye out for global occurrences as this helps people expand their mindset, and that’s what everyone is looking for. In short, where your cause is, there will be your content also.
For me, apart from entertainment and relevance, the third key to creating good viral content is the novelty factor. Creating good content is a matter of constant renewal and discovery. Whether it’s finding a story worth telling, a graphic design feature worth using, or a risk worth taking, make sure you don’t churn run-of-the-mill stuff. That’s the way to stand out. And in today’s world, that’s something worth aspiring for.
Q: You are the founder of JOQ Albania Media, a successful news website in Albania. According to you, what contributed to its success?
GC: That’s easy – my team’s and my collective ability to keep up with the world. We are a team of dedicated individuals who understand the importance of information in paving the direction in which our society moves. Our core attempt is to bring people news or information that affects their lives without them even knowing about it. I guess people have come to value us for our authenticity and expert research.
With a berth in the Guinness Book of World Record and a successful news website, Cekeli is ready for new challenges. Here’s wishing him good luck.