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Want to go viral like #TheDress? Friday’s the day

Want to go viral? Post on a Friday

The global fervor over #TheDress and last week's live llama chase may be down to timing—one digital expert told CNBC that stories, pictures or videos posted on a Friday are most likely to "go viral" on social media.

"We actually are able to analyze and determine which days, and time of day, our brands' content can go viral," said Chien-Wen Tong, strategy director at POSSIBLE, a marketing agency launched by WPP Digital.

"Friday for brands—one of ours which is a cold beverage brand—does really well," she added.

Even for content unlikely to go viral—be shared very widely across social media—it is still possible to calculate what day of the week it will get most views and interest, according to Tong.

"We can actually give some more guidance and see that there's a bit of science behind what seems to be rampant, crazy content," she said.

Still, Tong said, it is important to focus on the content format as well as timing.

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"Right now, things travel well because there's lots of images, and we've got Facebook and Twitter and Instagram that share images quickly. And we've got video, so YouTube is something that everyone can practically access on their phone, on their desktop," she said.

But firms should be wary of muscling in on viral success stories, Dan Beasley, founder of the social mobile agency Puzzle London, warned.

"There's probably more social media disasters than successes," Beasley told CNBC on Friday. "Brands try and get involved in the conversation and force their way into it, and that's when you get resistance from the general public."

However, he said that Lego did a great job weighing in on #TheDress debate, taking advantage of a global web-wide debate last week on the color of a dress originally posted on microblogging platform Tumblr.

"They (Lego) got involved and very simply created an image of two Lego characters, one wearing a black dress, one wearing a gold dress. And that naturally resonated with people," Beasley said.

Tong recalled a similar success story for Nokia last year. When Apple launched its iPhone 5C in a range of colours, Nokia tweeted a photo of its Lumia smartphone to "thank" Apple, saying "Imitation is the best form of flattery."

Nokia's post garnered 38,000 retweets.

"Brands are able to be part of the conversation but I think...there's a cynicism about being the conversation," Tong said.

Beasley added that it was useful for brands to connect with "influencers" with high social media presences.

"If you look at the dress story, Kanye West, Kim Kardashian, Taylor Swift all got involved and these people have followings on Twitter and Instagram akin to the size of a small country," he said. "When they get involved you get a multiplier effect."