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Viral Marketing – Basics –

November 20, 2008
Jay

Viral marketing and viral advertising refer to marketing techniques that use pre-existing social networks to produce increases in brand awareness or to achieve other marketing objectives (such as product sales) through self-replicating viral processes, analogous to the spread of pathological and computer viruses. It can be word-of-mouth delivered or enhanced by the network effects of the Internet. Viral marketing is a marketing phenomenon that facilitates and encourages people to pass along a marketing message voluntarily. 

Viral promotions may take the form of video clips, interactive Flash games, advergames, ebooks, brandable software, images, or even text messages. The basic form of viral marketing is not infinitely sustainable.

The elements of viral marketing strategy are: 

  • Gives away products or services
  • Provides for effortless transfer to others
  • Scales easily from small to ver
    y large
  • Exploits common motivations and behaviors
  • Utilizes existing communication networks
  • Takes advantage of others’ resources