Online marketing ideas to drive viral growth

Imagine yourself as the marcom head of a company. You have been assigned a big marketing campaign, what is the first question you ask. The budget.

Well, the way we plan is the money way. You’d probably spend millions to buy your way into people’s minds, interrupting them with TV spots, billboards by the side of the highway, and other “creative” advertising techniques. You’d also hire a big PR agency, who would beg the media to write about your attraction.

At the first glance you would be more than interested in adopting the policies of corporate giants with likes of Google, Microsoft, Pepsi, Shell Petroleum etc but here’s the twist of doing something contemporary yet unique.

What if I tell you all this can be done with almost NO Cost? Viral marketing it is.

What is viral marketing?

Just type in the word Viral on the Google of your brain and first reaction you get is it spreads involuntarily .So is Viral marketing where strategy is to gain access to social networks that will voluntarily pass along an advertising message. It involves spreading of information and opinions about a product or service from person to person.

One of the coolest things about the Web is that when an idea takes off, it can help a brand reach instant fame and fortune. For free. Having other people tell your story drives action. One person sends it to another, then that person sends it to yet another, and on and on. The challenge for marketers is to harness the amazing power of word-of-mouse.

Here I present to you 10 simple ideas that guide you through your own word-of-mouse efforts.

1. An ad with a funny bone

Social Media platforms like face book, twitter, and youtube are one of the most effective medium for promoting any kind of website, product, video or images etc. Loads of innovation is the key here. If you are able to create an ad which is interest If you could create a video which is catchy, funny and gets the message through it will make it to the Wall of thousands of Face book user’s then rest assured you are upon the right track.

2. EBooks

These can very well show your expertise in a specific field. . Allow people to give away your free E-book to their.It becomes self perpetuating advertising if it contains your URL and contact information, and a description of what you do.

3. Freebies

You must have some item in your business which you can give away. Viral marketing is based on value earned for value given, just as anything else is. The web just makes it very easy to give good value over and over. Somewhere in your business, there is something you can give as a marketing incentive. Do it creatively and generously, and it will come back to you many times over.

4. Articles

Write articles that are related to your product or service. Allow people to reprint your articles on their website, newsletter, magazine or E-books.

5. eZines

eZines can become a form of viral marketing when they contain the notice at the bottom that the eZine may be forwarded intact to anyone. Taking it one step further, you can put a notice on articles that you write for it that invites people to reprint the article with the signature line intact.

6. Discounts

Discounts have been and will always be the fastedst way of spreading the word. One of the ways is to include a coupon of discount on the purchase of a limited amount of money. Sites like myntra.com use these tactics to ensure repeat sales.

7. Invitations

Whenever a company wants to promote a special event like product launches or sale, or new product, send an invitation to your customers with an incentive like this – “Get a friend and get a free gift”. This way the flyer goes hand to hand without any extra cost.

8. Sponsor Sports Event

The biggest sporting events are due to occur in 2012 with likes Euro 2012, Twenty 20 Cricket World Cup and London Olympics 2012.If you could redesign your website and Face book fan page to reflect your interest in these sporting events then there are high chances for success. You can organize competitions like pick your dream; predict how many goals would team Spain score in today’s match etc where daily 5 lucky winner going to get your product for free.

9. Nothing is guaranteed in the viral world

It is virtually impossible to create a Web marketing program that is guaranteed to go viral as it is not in your hands. What an executive can do is efforts by the way of all the methods stated above. But once it is set up, it runs virtually on auto-pilot. One might become very successful; others might just be seen by the office employs.

We should think of viral marketing as from a venture capitalist s view. He is usually ready to take risks. Many of the initiations will be duds that won’t spark any interest; a few will generate some notice and basically pay back your investment of the time required to create them; and a handful will go viral and make the entire program of ten or twenty viral marketing campaigns worthwhile.

So go out there in the virtual world, your message will go out across the world into places you could not imagine, far beyond the few minutes you spent creating and uploading them.

Let the word-of-mouse spread you ideas for free. All the best.