Viral marketing strategy refers to that strategy wherein a message is promoted in such a way that the target audience grows exponentially. The term ‘viral’ is used here as the exponential growth works in the same fashion as the multiplication of viruses. This rapid multiplication which is the key to growth in both the cases can be explained well below.
History of the Term “Viral Marketing Strategy’
The origin of the term viral marketing strategy can be traced to the virus. Basically it is the doubling power of the virus that becomes relevant here. A virus multiplies by using the resources of the host provided it gets the right setting. And boy! The increase in numbers is unimaginable. Same is the case of this strategy, which can be best explained with the ‘hotmail’ example. Hotmail offered free email services to clients and included a message promoting their free services at the end of each email which would be seen by the chain of acquaintances of the original user, spreading their brand like wildfire.
Constituents of Viral Marketing Strategy
Some strategies among these are more powerful than the others; normally it all depends on how well you can incorporate the following elements that determine the effectiveness of your strategy. A result- oriented viral marketing strategy includes:
• Offering Free Products or Services
The term ‘free’ can broaden the vision of even the miser to look beyond the ‘free’ products or services offered. The free services could be in terms of a software program, an email service, important piece of information, which are of course availed slightly less than the original version. Online marketers greatly benefit by using this term with respect to their goods as the readers automatically notice other products which facilitate increased sales.
• Having Easy Replication
For your message to spread easily, it has to be short and simple, providing no chance for drastic change. Internet is an effective medium for ensuring the replication in as quick a manner as possible. As in case of ‘Hotmail’, their short and simple message of free services included in every user’s email proved to be a winner.
• Having Necessary Infrastructure Ready
You need to have the entire infrastructure that would be needed in place to tackle the increased volumes if your strategy becomes a winner. Otherwise all efforts may go futile.
• Taking Advantage of Common Motivations
For any viral marketing strategy to be successful, it has to tap the right attributes of the individual which can take the strategy further. Besides greed, the need to be well-liked, popular or to be with the crowd is some among the common motivating factors for raising your strategy to the next level.
• Making Use of Existing Network of Communication
All individuals have their own network of friends and acquaintances online and offline. It is these online human networks which are tapped by affiliate programs to spread their own messages. Such ways can be adopted to spread your message rapidly.
• Piggy Riding on Resources of Others
A winning strategy uses the resources of other websites to get the message across to a wider group of people. Some examples that can be given here are affiliate programs or news releases where a third person’s webpage or newsprint transmits your marketing idea.
If you can understand the above mentioned principles and put them into practice, then you definitely have a winning viral marketing strategy in your hand.