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November 5, 2007 | Resources and Tools , Wine Industry Trends | WineDirect Admin

You’ve Heard About It But Have You Tried It?

Viral marketing refers to a marketing method that uses social networks to produce improved brand awareness. It is marketing that assists and encourages users to pass along a marketing message freely. We have all heard the claim that if your customer is satisfied with your product or service, they will tell 3 people, however they will tell 11 if they are not. Viral marketing is based around this natural human behavior.

The idea that you can upload a video and consumers will not only find but then share your information is exhilarating. The concept that leveraging these large user bases to introduce and build brand awareness is monumental. However, it’s not as easy as that. You still need to do your targeting homework. According to a report by JupiterResearch, Only 15 percent of viral marketers are succeeding in getting consumers to promote their message.

Like any other marketing campaign, a viral marketer has to follow the basic rules:

  1. Know your audience
  2. Know how they communicate
  3. Know your product

Targeting to the proper market is key in all aspects of marketing and that is no different in this case. Understanding all the different channels and methods available to you is also important. Video is not the only method available to viral marketers. It seems to be the most noted due to the ever increasing popularity of video publishing sites such as YouTube. Remember that any medium that brings your message to social networks is proper viral marketing. With the emergence of Web 2.0, mostly all web startups like facebook.com, youtube.com, collabotrade.com, myspace.com, and digg.com have made great use of Viral Marketing by merging it with the social networking. Take advantage of these networks and their large user communities.

One prime example of viral marketing at its best was in 2000, Slate described TiVo’s unpublicized gambit of giving free TiVo’s to web-savvy enthusiasts to create “viral” word of mouth, pointing out that a viral campaign differs from a publicity stunt. You can read more about this campaign at http://www.slate.com/id/1006264/.

The true purpose of viral marketing is to get people talking about your brand. The obvious benefits of course include sharing your information, building brand awareness and enticing consumer engagement. Take the time to learn this technique. See what works and what doesn’t. The benefits speak for themselves.

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