If it is done correctly and respectfully, viral marketing has become, not only one of the most, but a very effective means of marketing among businesses worldwide.
Correctly and respectfully? What does that mean? Without abusing the system. To spread the word about your business, your product and your service without offending others or being self-serving by using viral marketing tactics.
But, viral marketing is inherently self-serving, isn’t it? Well, yes and no. Viral marketing must include a give and take approach to be truly effective. Giving as much as you get, engaging with others, and taking part in conversation must be included in the equation. Your message will not to spread itself.
Viral marketing takes time, careful planning. There must be careful planning and a well-thought out execution for viral marketing to work correctly. In other words, it needs attention.
There are, however, 3 main approaches in which viral marketing can be applied:
#1 – To Share. Some of the products of viral marketing are social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube. They too must share their service via their users while allowing (and encourage) users to share information. It’s simple, really. These users enjoy their websites so much and believe so much in them that they share those websites with others. These social media powerhouses have become multi-million, some billion dollar businesses thanks to, viral marketing because they knew this and trusted this would take place.
#2 – To Add Value. Viral marketing has many unique characteristics, but adding value is a common marketing approach across the board that is not unique to this type of marketing. Offering their customers “more” is understood to be important for hundreds of years by business owners. For example, receiving this additional product for free when you buy this product.
Do you have a clear understanding or get the picture? So, understand that it applies to your viral marketing in the same way, this notion of adding value. However, you make value-added offers to those who share your message rather than simply applying added value to your products and services. Receive a free product once this message is sent to an additional 10 people, for example. You will see results when you add an incentive!
#3 – To create buzz. Creating buzz is can be extremely effective, similar to sharing . How is it different? Creating buzz is more about spreading the word, whereas sharing refers to others literally sharing information with friends (i.e. Like my Facebook page? See more of what I’m up to, including photos, favorites and more! Sign-up for your own Facebook page today). It is similar to the way in which gossip magazines create stories based on hearsay.
As a result, gossip that spreads like wildfire. People begin to encourage others to become customers, sign-up or carry on the conversation on their own. This is a positive way to get people “talking” about you and your business.
Inundating your audience with your message is not the sole purpose of viral marketing. It goes a step further by enticing others to not only become customers, but to spread the word as well by using strategic planning and taking an approach that puts your business in a positive light.
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