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Viral marketing defined

November 1, 2005

Viral marketing 101 is the title of a nice piece from JuiceNewsDaily, a one-stop-source among independent internet news organizations. Not surprisingly, blogs are at the top of the list.

Viral marketing is sometimes used to describe some sorts of Internet-based stealth marketing campaigns, including the use of blogs, seemingly amateur web sites, and other forms of astroturfing to create word of mouth for a new product or service. Often the ultimate goal of viral marketing campaigns is to generate media coverage via ‘offbeat’ stories worth many times more than  the campaigning company’s advertising budget.

The term ‘viral advertising’ refers to the idea that people will pass on and share cool and entertaining content; this is often sponsored by a brand, which is looking to build awareness of a product or service. These viral  commercials often take the form of funny video clips, or interactive Flash  games, images, and even text.

Viral marketing is popular because of the ease of executing the marketing  campaign, relative low-cost (compared to direct mail), good targeting, and  the high and rapid response rate. The main strength of viral marketing is its ability to obtain a large number of interested people at a low cost.

In your blog, you publish valuable content. That content is referred to in other blogs reaching your target audience. You’ll often be referred to as an authority when others write in their blog about content from your blog. In all cases a third-party’s mention of your content will link back to your blog. Now that’s a virus.

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