Staff Writer: Brjden Crewe
Viral marketing rose to major popularity in the late 90’s working much like how a computer virus worked. That’s a bold opening statement, I know, but this is how it worked. One reader opens a marketing message from a company/organization. They get infected by it and the passes it on to another email account and so on and so forth. The more appealing the message, the more it would get sent, thus describes viral marketing in a nutshell.
There are a ton of different techniques and strategies in a viral marketing message campaign and with the popularity of social media, viral marketing is able to see greater heights today. Yet in still, there are other traditional ways to utilize viral marketing for your business as well. Here are 10 ways to launch and utilize your viral marketing campaign successfully:
Writing content and submitting articles is a very strong viral marketing tool which will only be effective if your articles are written well and provides helpful and useful information also. Submitting your articles to popular, quality websites increase your chances to solicit visitors to share your content which can lead to visitors to your site. Always thank your readers and encourage them with a “Send to a Friend” resource box when possible. But with all of the outlets available online, there are many ways to spread your content to websites and readers.
Email is one of the more traditional online viral marketing methods. How many times have you received emails that have been forwarded to you by people you don’t even know? That is the power of viral. Don’t be afraid to ask people to forward your emails to everyone they know. Sending out emails of value, quality and usefulness just might cause a widespread infection!
The power of viral marketing is unlimited but your marketing “virus” needs to be unique, useful, entertaining and powerful. People will not spread something that is not worth spreading. Study marketing tactics of other companies but try to develop your own unique idea or twist of an old idea, that no one else has used before. Develop a new virus for which there is no cure!
1. Free eBook – eBooks have been a very popular and effective means of viral marketing for quite some time. Compile a free PDF eBook using articles you have written, useful information, resources, etc., and start spreading that virus. Offer the eBook to your visitors for free. Write a message inside encouraging them to give the eBook to their visitors and so on and so on. Submit the eBook to free eBook sites and directories. Add a link to the eBook in your email sigtag. The better the content of the eBook the more the “virus” will spread.
If you feel that you cannot write your own eBook, there are a lot of PLR and rebrandable eBooks you could use to achieve the same results.
2. Newsletters – If you publish a newsletter, you can use that to increase your viral marketing. Make it easy for people to share it with others. Encourage your subscribers to forward a copy to their friends so they can subscribe. Offer a free gift to the subscribers who can get the most people to subscribe.
4. Social Media – Social media has the capabilities of expanding your viral marketing to new heights. Try to regularly participate in at least the top three social sites which are Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. A newcomer that is rising in popularity very fast is Pinterest so I would recommend starting with that one as well. When used effectively, these social media sites allow you to spread your virus in ways that were not before possible.
5. Blogging – Blogging is a form of social media marketing and can do wonders for your viral marketing. A quality blog will pull in many readers on a regular basis. Make it easy for your readers to interact with comments and opinions. Update your content consistently and always respond to reader comments for more success.
6. Tell-A-Friend – A free tell-a-friend script is a handy thing to have on your site or blog. It allows people to send your webpage to anyone they think would be interested thus launching your viral marketing. The easier it is for people to share your message the more your virus will spread.
7. Social Media Share Buttons – These highly effective buttons allow your visitors to easily share your blog, site or information with all their social media followers and friends. You can find many options for free that have these buttons for many of the social media sites. The first site to come up for some of these options is ShareThis.
8. Videos – Over two million people watch YouTube videos each day so getting your marketing video visible to this massive audience will pump up your viral marketing. You can also post video clips on your site with a well-spoken marketing message or demonstration. Make it easy for people to pass on your video to their friends and followers.
9. Word-of-Mouth – Word of mouth is one of the oldest forms of viral marketing. It was around long before the internet was ever dreamed of. It is also one of the most effective because people are passing on your message to people they know and their opinion is probably taken with more approval and consideration. It can also be more difficult because it requires people to take a more involved action than clicking a button. Make your customers feel happy and satisfied and they will spread the word (or virus).