Mitch McConnell Video Goes ‘Viral’

April 29, 2013 11:00 a.m.

A two minute campaign video by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) has quickly garnered over 1 million views but its lack of any visible buzz has at least one analytics expert unsure if its numbers haven’t been artificially inflated. 

From the The Fix’s Rachel Weiner and Aaron Blake: 

None of McConnell’s other videos have gotten anywhere near this amount of traffic, and the short trailer version of the video has only 1,098 views.

Did the video really go viral? “It doesn’t have the characteristics of an organic viral video,” said Eugene Lee, Founder and CEO of ChannelMeter, a YouTube analytics site. A viral video, he said, would have more pickup in social media and would accumulate views steadily rather than spiking quickly and then dropping off. He suggested that it was a “paid buy” — this article from the Daily Dot explains how YouTube views can be bought.

McConnell’s campaign attributes the sharp increase in views to an innovative social media strategy and the presidential campaign quality of the video. The video also was promoted in some Web ads and mentioned on campaign news blogs, but it hasn’t gotten much traction in the traditional media or cable news.

Here’s the video: 

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