Marketers know that a satisfied and loyal customer is willing to share information about a product or company with 3-4 people – friends, colleagues, relatives. However, the same customer, when faced with negative emotions from interacting with a brand or receiving poor-quality services, is ready to share this with 8-10 people. Viral marketing leverages these consumer psychology traits both online and in offline spaces.
The primary goal of marketers is to target individuals with high social significance. These can be popular bloggers, media personalities, opinion leaders, and others. Viral messages are tailored to these individuals. The campaign's success depends on how much they resonate with the information.Depending on its objectives, viral marketing can be:
- Scandalous and provocative;
In each of these types, it's crucial to cleverly present the product or service so that the target audience doesn't perceive the message as an advertisement. However, since viral marketing is a business development tool, it's essential to incorporate the brand's or company's symbols as a reminder of its presence.Viral Engagement Techniques:Spread the Word
– This is the digital age's version of "word of mouth". It involves individuals willingly circulating marketing messages. A favored medium is video, which can range from entertaining sketches to film previews. By cleverly integrating advertisements into these videos, results can surpass anticipated outcomes. Written content and visual ads, like controversial articles or eye-catching graphics, can also work. Ultimately, for the tactic to work, viewers should be compelled to disseminate the content.Reward-Driven Sharing
– This strategy incentivizes users through rewards for specific actions. It's not just about spontaneous brand sharing but a sustained drive to amplify a product within the desired audience. This can involve special offers, bonuses, or contests like "introduce a colleague and earn a bonus" or "Circulate this content and enter our giveaway".Mystery Marketing
– Banking on the inherent human interest in the unknown, marketers churn out pre-launch content and whip up excitement around it, sometimes introducing purposeful restrictions. For instance, offering exclusive membership invitations or capping early-phase participants.Hype Generation
– This involves stirring chatter, organizing flash mobs, or executing grand campaigns. The aim is to captivate the audience by any means necessary, such as contracting individuals to publicly use and laud a brand's offerings. However, if mishandled, this tactic might backfire, tarnishing a brand or public figure.