Is YOUR Viral Marketing Effective?
Viral Marketing has been around since 1996, but has been in a constant state of flux since it was first used as a marketing tool. Although many people have heard the term for years, it is very surprising how few people actually know what Viral Marketing is and how it works.
When used correctly, Viral Marketing can make a huge impact almost immediately. On the other hand, incorrect viral marketing can be a major waste of both time and money.
How can we ensure that our Viral Marketing efforts deliver the desired results?
First, let’s make sure we are all on the same page regarding this mysterious advertising technique. What exactly is Viral Marketing? The definition of viral marketing is ... a method of advertising products or services that causes recipients to pass them on to friends, associates and family members. Viral marketing got its odd name because the word spreads like a virus.
When done correctly, one person will give it to a few people who in turn will pass it on to several other people. This is what makes viral marketing so effective. For instance, let’s say you developed an MLM training website and offered the training FREE to 10 people, who in turn forwarded the site to 10 people, who in turn passed it on to 10 people each. This simple viral campaign would put your website in front of 1,000 people almost immediately.
Now here’s where it gets fun … if everyone passes it on to 10 people and this progression continues just three more times, one million people will have access to YOUR website. Continue the progression twice more and 100,000,000 people (100 million people) will have been exposed to YOUR website. And because the Internet is so efficient, it could realistically happen in a matter of days, weeks or months.
In the beginning, email was the only way to effectively start and execute a viral marketing campaign. In the decade since, viral marketing has evolved from a marketing strategy to an art form and there are many ways to accomplish the objective of creating a successful viral marketing campaign.
Here a just of few of the ways you can start a successful viral marketing promotion:
Email – This is where it all started. This is still the most widely used viral marketing medium, but government and ISP restrictions have made email marketing more challenging. Before investing in an extensive email marketing campaign, make sure you are working with a proven vendor and technology. When done correctly, this is still the best way to start and stimulate your viral advertising promotion.
Blogging – Providing the tools on your website to enable bloggers to interact with one another is a terrific way to get the message about your product of service out there and being talked about. Bloggers have their ears to the ground for new products and services.
Training Articles – By providing valuable resources to a targeted audience (home business owners, Internet marketers, pet owners, chefs, etc.), you can easily penetrate the market through the ‘back door.’ By offering high quality FREE training to specific niches, you increase your exposure and credibility, all in one fell swoop.
Newsletters – eNewsletter and eZines are a variation of email marketing and can be very effective tools. If you include enough timely and valuable information, a good newsletter can drive up the number of visits to your website.
Refer-A-Friend: If you add this with a statement saying that e-mail addresses supplied will never be shared with third parties, you can increase your potential customer list greatly.
The main thing to remember about effective Viral Marketing is that it all starts with a valuable tool or resource. The most effective viral advertising includes a product or service must provide tangible, measurable benefits at no cost to the recipient.
Once you have a product or service of value to offer, you have to get the ball rolling by ‘seeding’ your viral marketing campaign. Think of it like a snowball rolling down a hill. In the beginning, you have to work hard to push the snowball while it gathers mass and speed. After the snowball reaches ‘critical mass’, it begins to take on a life of its own. Your viral marketing promotion is no different. Get it started, keep working at it, and soon it will begin to promote itself.
To your success,