The news of Major League Baseball manager Ron Washington’s affinity for cocaine Wednesday did little to quell the League’s drug-induced reputation. Heckled by steroids for the past decade, America’s past time has quickly become the ‘who’s who’ of cheaters we love to judge. What has Washington done but elevate criticism to a level surely surpassed by the next scandal? It seems to me Ron and his dope fiend pals should rise up and stage some sort of coup against Bud Selig, storm into MLB headquarters, and accidentally burn it to the ground with one of Tim Lincecum’s misplaced joints.

Ok, that’s simply awful to suggest. But it is an interesting idea for a youtube video. Whether you like it or not, a short like that is bound to generate some serious traffic to your flick. After all, the point of uploading web videos is to get the most people to see them, right? The problem is most people don’t understand how to do this. Well, let’s use Mr. Washington as an example and see what we come up with for ideas to make your video as viral as skinny jeans and ex-girlfriends.

1. Be timely. Everything runs its course, and you want to be on top of things in a hurry. By the weekend we’ll all be talking about the health care vote or looking ahead to April Fools, not a ‘breaking’ story about another millionaire hooked on coke.

2. Be visible. A unique thumbnail to draw some interest is important. A headline combining wit and relevance is a must. i.e. Coach or Crackhead?

3. Be creative. If we wanted to watch a linked news interview, we would consult CNN, not youtube.Viral video fail here. Take some liberty and distinguish yourself from the others. You can do this with music, personal opinion, or some finely tuned Final Cut Pro skills. Most popular videos are filmed by the person posting anyway.

4. Be risky. What’s the worst that could happen? One to two hundred negative comments but enough interest to grow your viewership greatly. If you aren’t sure what your niche is, upload into all kinds of categories and develop a theme, it will help keep your viewers loyal.

5. Be yourself. Probably the most important aspect is showing why people need to watch your video. If you aren’t interesting enough (you know who you are), don’t waste the webspace. Find the Numa Numa guy you know and film the heck out of him until you get something useful. Not every video will be a hit. You never know what people will find amusing, but it’s guaranteed to be real or outrageous enough to appear so.

Now, back to Ronny and his habits.

I would be amiss to not use Dock Ellis as an example for a great viral video. James Blagden & No Mas developed a video from Ellis’ incident involving LSD and the most unlikely no-hitter in all of baseball. 950,000+ views in four months is not so bad. The video can be seen below.

Ron Washington, beware the power of viral…and stimulants.