Viral marketing is one of the most applied methods in online marketing. The arrival of social media and the integration with other interactive marketing methods like email marketing and video, gives every campaign the potential to rapidly spread across the world wide web.
Viral marketing has similarities with word-of-mouth and referral marketing, but is not quite the same. With viral marketing the focus lies more on wide spreading. In the first place, a viral marketing campaign’s success depends on the willingness of people to share the story. So on first sight it might seem that you can’t do much about it. Nonetheless, you have control over a part of the viral campaign, on condition that you tell the right story and focus on the relevance of it for the people you would like to engage. A marketing message that wants to succeed virally, has to be like a story that people will like to share with others. You can give it hand by using enough sharing tools through the channels you use.
Here are six tips for an integrated viral marketing campaign:
1. Tell a good story Look for a message that is original, surprising and relevant enough to be spread in function of the target group. Relevant can mean many things such as: valuable, funny, mysterious, teasing, etc.
2. Don’t be too obvious Don’t make the message too clear. The best viral marketing campaigns make the target group curious which starts online conversations. Viral marketing success depends on what people like and long for.
3. Make it teasing Don’t give away everything at once. Try planning your viral campaign in different stages. This will result in a longer viral effect but there are exceptions, as always. Sometimes viral marketing success goes hand in hand with a big bang.
4. Combine email, social media and more Make sure you have an integrated approach in which email marketing, social sharing, social media, different content formats and even banners and offline actions are integrated, although one single video can make a difference as well.
5. Start with influencers when fit Those can be identified by targeted identification, social media analysis and sharing behavior. However, you can also use other channels and, for instance, measure which email subscribers spread your email content the most through sharing tools.
6. Combine email marketing and viral marketing tools Tools with viral marketing and referral functions to integrate online channels like email and social media are great. However, they are not a must. If people want it and share it, it will go viral, whatever it is.