What is Viral Marketing? I think we’ve all heard of the phrase “Ideas spread like viruses” and this is quite true. Nowadays, in this era of technology, the process has sped up much faster than what it was a decade ago.
We have so many sophisticated channels and mediums these days that if we want to spread any form of content or ideas; it can be done quite effectively and quickly. This is where viral marketing has taken its place.
Viral marketing is a business strategy that mainly uses social networks to promote the brand through various content. The purpose of viral marketing is to spread information or any commercial message through the users themselves.
The users themselves act as the medium through which the intended information is spread. The main idea here is that it inspires users to spread or share content with other users. They choose to share themselves. We will explain how that works in this chapter.
How it works? – Viral Marketing Campaign
The basis of a viral marketing campaign is to give the right message to the right audience at the right time. Carrying out a viral marketing campaign is quite simpler than other forms of marketing campaigns. This method is used by all types of businesses – both small and large.
However, this works best for new startup businesses and smaller businesses who are trying to gain exposure in the industry. That’s because, through viral marketing, it’s really easy to gain popularity within a short span of time. Moreover, it’s cheaper than the generic traditional marketing methods, so it makes it cost-effective.
The important thing to realize is whether or not the content you are publishing will go viral or not. If you are only trying to create content for the purpose of making it viral, then make sure to follow the elements that make something go viral.
- Create your content (video/image etc.)
- Put it on the internet in (any platform)
- Do something that’ll at least gain some attention initially. For example, boosting
- Wait for the users to share it like crazy!
This sums up the whole process. In some cases, things get viral by accident. For example, a video or any other form of content might suddenly become very popular without the uploaders realizing it.
Sometimes brands use this as a strategy to circulate their content around the internet. They fake the viral, they make it seem like they uploaded something by accident which got sudden popularity among the internet users but in reality, they purposely spread the content themselves.
The idea that something that should not be in public gets public fascinates the internet users and that’s why it gains more popularity. Day after day, brands are using this to spread their brand awareness to a wide range of users.
What makes it go Viral?
Unless it’s something controversial, the guarantee that your content will go viral is not 100%. However, there are certain elements you can add to your content that will push your content towards getting viral. These elements are quite effective.
1. Easy Access – The content that you are trying to make it viral should have accessibility to everyone. It should be free for everyone. This ensures that your content will at least reach a wide range of users of the internet. Easy accessibility also gains more attention from users globally.
2. Transferability – The content or the message that the content is trying to convey should be capable of being transferred easily. If it’s a teaser video, it must contain links that the users must click on to avail of the original video. Even apart from this, the content should be easily transferable from one device to another via E-mail, WhatsApp, and Messenger, etc.
3. Attention Grabber – The most important aspect is the content itself. The content should be engaging enough to be an attention grabber. The message you are trying to portray through the content should be easy to understand.
It can’t be very long content. Moreover, the messages inside the content should be placed intelligently where it is most engaging. Users must be able to identify the message you are trying to convey.
4. Celebrity Endorsement – This is a very effective yet not available to everyone technique that can make your content go viral. If any celebrity or any influential person shares or reviews your content in their social media or any other platform; the chances of getting that content viral become very high.
Advantages of Viral Marketing
1. Low Cost – Most of the work here is done by the users. They share your content, they like it, they post comments on it, etc. The unnecessary cost to spend money on further advertisement gets cuts down. The only cost is the money spent on making the content.
2. Massive Reach – The fluctuating element of viral marketing is that you never know how many users it will reach. It does not have a fixed target audience. Viral content tends to reach an audience outside of its horizon. Without spending any money, your content can reach lots of people
3. Builds your brand – When a content coming from your brand gets viral, the perception of the audience on your brand gradually changes, either for good or bad. However, you have the right to choose which content should get viral.
So generally it’s for the good. It helps to create brand awareness and gains new followers along the way. The growth rate is fast and helps to generate leads very quickly.
4. High user engagement – The decision to share and review the viral content completely depends on the user. So, it doesn’t feel invasive, like the brand is not forcing or persuading the user to share the content. The user is doing it because the content is interesting. As a result, user engagement is very high.
There are many effective marketing techniques that include targeting the appropriate audience, boosting the content, etc. However, in viral marketing, those are not your top priority. What matters is creating quality content, offering value, creating an emotional appeal, creating social outreach, easy accessibility, etc.