Here's my situation - the full overview of traffic on this blog since it's beginning, according to Google Analytics. Spikes, which happen when something goes viral, all over the place. At this point, I'm almost at 100 posts, and around 10 are worth mentioning, making it on a single or more platforms. The list almost fully corresponds with my internal top list, and you can click on any of them if you would like to what they're about. Quite various, actually.
Traffic overview and the most visited contents on stritar.net
While the above chart may show those posts that got the most traffic, only a few of them are the real winners. Interaction and impact is what counts. Feedback from the people. My first real viral post about Facebook vs. Twitter got 100+ retweets, while newer ones managed to unlock a few other interesting achievements. The one about Apple and Slovenia ended by people tweeting about how Apple will buy Slovenia since there was a mysterious announcement on their homepage (which turned out to be The Beatles in the iTunes store). The post about Beer in Brussels produced more than 80 funny comments on reddit. Discussing about Pop TV and events on Twitter established an arrangement between the Slovenian soccer association, the established sports journalist Igor E. Bergant and the leading Slovenian soccer portal Nogomania to cover the next national soccer match on Twitter together (we'll see on February 29th). Fantastic turns of events.
There is no viral without the platform. While Facebook may have been the biggest referrer of traffic in this blog's history, it's a stable referrer, which can hardly make something viral. Twitter is better, since the whole concept behind retweeting can amplify you outside your social circle, even though it's much harder to master. But the platforms really worth mentioning are the community based curation / recommendation engines: Reddit, StumbleUpon and Hacker News. They are much more complex to use, since you have to be a part of the community one way or another, but that's how it works - there is no taking without giving.
Top referrers for stritar.net. Twitter referrals are included in Twitter and t.co.
The downside: publishing to all these channels and the aftercare (commenting, animating) can take quite some time, but you're nothing without it.
If you have good content, going viral can be managed and influenced, and it happens when the parameters align. Since you have to have as many chances for that to happen, you need to blog as much as you can. That's the real recipe, if there is any. For permanent readers, for real supporters that can help you tip the scale, for additional lottery tickets.
But why go through all this trouble? Well, imagine getting 100 likes and comments on a Facebook post. Or 20 retweets of a really witty tweet you're so proud of. Multiply that by 10, and you'll get the picture of how it feels when you go viral. That's why you blog in the first place, you only don't know it.