What is Viral Marketing and How Can It Make Me Money?

Since social media rose up and eclipsed many older forms of marketing, a term has been floating around that has made a lot of savvy businessmen a lot of money.

viral marketing spiral

Courtesy of acreativellc.com

Viral marketing is one of the cornerstone principles of the social media age – and uses people to spread messages, not mediums or alternative campaigns. Word of mouth marketing gone absolutely haywire is otherwise known as viral marketing.

Aptly named because it spreads throughout the internet like an aggressive virus, really this form of marketing is the fastest, most efficient form of promotion today. And it’s all thanks to the social media platforms that act as mouthpieces for the rampant spread of information, ideas and of course – sales messages. The question is, how can it make me money? Let’s examine the various ways it can:

The Massive Hype or Following

Whether you’re planning on creating a viral article, e-book or video, if you do it right they will all have the same conclusion – instant hype and mass appeal. Viral marketing is such a precise art that when it works; it blows past all reasonable estimation.

Here’s an example – you pop a free e-book on your blog and promote it a little. Within a few days, five thousand people have downloaded it. Some of them have sent it to their friends via email, some have posted it on their blog, or blogged about it.

Within a week, it has spread from those initial 5000 downloads, to an audience of over 60 000 people, because it went ‘viral.’ People enjoyed it so much they told others about it, recommended it, or mentioned it on their own websites, blogs or social media pages.

It’s free promotion from people who thought your e-book was worth the trouble. Now imagine in that e-book you had a link to another product that you were selling for $30.99? Sales potential increases dramatically!

Building On Reputation

Because most of the people who hear about your e-book, article or video will not have been from the original group that was exposed to your marketing messages – they will consider the recommendation unique.

When a product or book is recommended by a third party, who doesn’t benefit in any way from the sale or download of the item – people are more likely to take them seriously. What this essentially does, is it boosts your reputation and the reputation of your business or product virtually overnight.

Reputation is everything on the internet. Imagine how many more e-books you’ll sell, if the one you gave away for free was so brilliant and well received!

Your fans will build you a community that is actively interested in your products, from the viral product you previously released. They get to know your brand, and the quality content – and are more willing to buy the next time round.

So how does viral marketing make you money? Other people promote your product for you. It costs you nothing, and in return you get free recommendations, hype and mass market appeal. Isn’t it time you looked into creating a viral product?

Have you tried it before? Tell us what you think of viral marketing, and of the problems you’ve encountered when crossing into the ‘sales’ zone.

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