Every day we hear all about viral marketing. The Internet’s viral videos and content that spreads at the speed of light. But what exactly is it? A viral product or viral advertising, viral campaigns or simply luck, that randomly makes something such a big hit.
Viral content usually has a well-designed viral strategy behind it. It is, in part, also due to luck, but creativity and preparation are also extremely important… For this reason, to get to know this world a little better, I would like to tell you today that the definition of this concept actually is, how a viral campaign works, the advantages or viral marketing and show you our favorite examples.
Viral Marketing: what is it?
Viral Marketing is that which is able to generate interest and the potential sale of a brand or product through messages that spread like a virus, in other words, quickly, and from person to person. The idea is for it to be the users themselves that choose to share the content.
Due to their speed and ease to share, social networks are the natural habitat of this kind of marketing. The most widespread example in recent times is the creation of moving, surprising or spectacular videos on YouTube. They are then shared on Facebook, Twitter and other channels.
The reason to make use or virality, the ease in spreading and sharing, is however a double-edged sword. We cannot forget that in this type of campaign. On the other hand, a successful viral campaign can work miracles for your brand’s results.
How a viral campaign works
A viral marketing campaign is very simple to carry out: create a video or another type of content which is attractive to the target, put it on the internet and plan the first actions to get it moving. All you can do is wait for the fuse to light and for users to start sharing like crazy.
In some cases, virality happens by accident, from a video uploaded by a private user that all of a sudden becomes popular and begins to circulate all around the Internet.
As for the dispersion strategy of the videos created by brands, we have two focus points: the shown or the concealed. In the former, the user is aware from the first moment that they are viewing advertising content. While in the latter the participation of the brand is hidden and is only revealed later.
If you apply concealed marketing techniques, it is important to be very careful. So the user does not feel tricked, cheated or deceived, as the viral campaign could then turn against you.
No matter what strategy we choose, we should never ever become spammers, nor go overboard while sharing the content. Instead of repeating message over and over again, the best strategy is to find the perfect place and time and let the “viral fuse” light itself.
Advantages of viral marketing
- Low cost. What characterizes viral campaigns is that the users do a significant part of the work for us. It becomes unnecessary to buy advertising or space on the media.
- Potential of great reach. A viral video on the Internet has the ability to reach a huge international audience without us having to invest money or make any extra effort. Due to this, a small company or even a private individual can go extremely far.
- It is not invasive. In viral marketing, the decision to participate and share always comes from the user, and so it never comes across as invasive. Like this, the perception of the brand and the interaction are significantly better, compared to more classical forms of advertising.
- It helps build up your brand. If we really hit the bull’s-eye in terms of creativity, we are creating content so incredible that users themselves decide to share it and, hence create a personal connection with your brand. It is without a doubt an extremely powerful tool when it comes to branding and awareness.