Viral marketing is quite a popular trend of advertising and marketing right now especially online as it takes advantage of the internet’s network effect to be able to reach a great number of people in a short time.
Some Benefits of Viral Marketing
Viral marketing offer a number of advantages to businesses
Easy to execute. There are a few methods of sending viral contents or information and all of them are really easy to do. Among those methods are instant messaging, using web sites, sending email. Sending viral content through these media will not take much time or effort.
Low-cost. When compared to sending direct emails, viral marketing proves to be cheaper and a more effective method. With just a small investment on viral advertising, its power can reach hundreds of thousands of people. That is because the only money spend are on sending the initial set of viral contents, then all the forwarding and replicating of the message will not require any additional costs.
Good targeting. With viral marketing, there is a much higher probability that the message will get to people who are interested in it. Because the concept of viral marketing is really just passing on a message from one person to another and it is highly probable that the person will pass it to another person whom he knows will be interested in it content. So the percentage of wasted advertising, which is basically sending messages to the wrong people, will be greatly reduced.
High and rapid response rate. Because viral marketing reaches a huge number of the business’ there is also a high possibility to have a big turnover ratio. Even if the responses will not convert straight away into profit, there still will be a large amount of traffic that the business or website will receive which is what most owners want because traffic generally converts into profit.
These are truly great benefits a business can get by using viral marketing. But what is really makes it much more powerful than other strategies?
Let’s take Hotmail as an example, where this marketing strategy really started. Hotmail was able to spread over the internet at a really fast rate. It was like an virus that spreads out to others once there is a single person infected by it. That is why it was named as such.
According to Hotmail’s statistics, the subscribers numbers grew from zero to twelve million subscribers in just eighteen month. Just imagine if you can have such grows with your business. What is more amazing is that Hotmail only spend $50,000 on advertising to achieve it. In comparison Juno spent $20 million on traditional advertising within the same time period but got much less output.
Thinking about example above, viral marketing’s main strength is in reaching a huge number of who are interested in a service or product within a short time frame and at a considerably smaller costs then traditional advertising. Hotmail did not have any marketing or advertising presence in most countries outside the United States but it got to be the major email service provider worldwide. If we look at Google the same strategy was applied when they launched their email service.
The thing that adds more power to viral marketing is the fact that the message are passed on so it is like an endorsement from a trusted person. People think that if my friend uses a product or service and pleased with it them what is stopping me from doing the same thing.
Hotmail’s case is not an isolated one, During the history of the internet there are many similar cases for example Google, twitter, yahoo, Facebook etc.
Viral marketing is one powerful tool to increase business awareness and popularity of your service or product. It is also often used by affiliate marketers. But just like any other method, proper use of viral marketing technique is necessary. A misuse or mistake when using it may result in permanent damage to the product or service being promoted.