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Young Entrepreneurs Create a Formula to Give Ads a Viral Boost Virool gives businesses a self-serve, social video advertising platform to help get the kind of exposure that only a viral hit can bring.

By Jennifer Wang

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

In Jan. 8, 2010, the infamous "Double Rainbow" clip appeared on YouTube, documenting a hysterical reaction to a natural phenomenon. For about seven months it languished, barely seen--until Jimmy Kimmel tweeted a link to his followers, proclaiming it the "funniest video in the world." Views today sit at well over 37 million.

Targeted-network exposure (i.e., telling the right things to the right people) can help any video go viral. And Alex Debelov, 25, and Vladimir Gurgov, 26, founders of San Francisco-based Virool, have latched on to this concept as a way to help brands. They have developed a self-serve, social video advertising platform with campaigns starting at $10, depending on the reach and medium selected.

So far 12,000 publishers have signed on, including independent websites, blogs and mobile-game and Facebook-app developers such as WordPress and Zynga. They're lured by Virool's analysis of online user behavior, such as Facebook activity and content shared, which pinpoints where and what types of videos will be promoted effectively. "Good content matters, but viral videos don't become viral by themselves," Debelov asserts. "Even more important is the discovery and distribution. You have to find the audience that has an affinity for a particular advertiser's brand of content."

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