The Language that Can Help You Win at Viral marketing
There is a language that can help you become better at viral marketing. In most cases, this language has a few key features that make it effective:
No one wants to think that they are sending spam to their friends, so viral marketing campaigns that are too aggressive are unlikely to work. You want to create a web page, game, service, email, or other giveaways that clearly display your marketing message but are not so obvious that no one would want to send them. A simple stylish logo is a good bet. Flashing, huge banner ads on your web page are not.
The “you” factor:
Every customer wants to feel special. If you can make a message seem more personalized, you are more likely to have that message read – and passed along. You can make your customers feel as though they are being given personalized attention even if you do not have the budget to hire a large customer service staff. Simply keep track of customer orders and reward customers for repeated service with gifts or incentives. Make recommendations to customers based on their past purchases (online retail giant Amazon does this successfully by offering a “my store” page on their web site). Above all, refer to customers in sales literature by their names. It does not take much effort to set your word processing or email software to add a name to a field. That way, customers will read their name instead of the generic “dear friend” making them feel more directly addressed, even if the letter is a form letter.
The terms “no-cost,” “gift” and “free” are the staples of viral advertising. These words let customers know that you are offering some service or product – be it a free game download or free service period – and so makes it far more likely that they will visit your site or recommend your product. Customers are also more likely to pass along your message if the initial product costs them nothing in the first place.
Offer your customers instant gratification by offering them a gift or incentive right away. Whether it is an instant game download or a free service, your customers are likely only going to be looking at your website or email or event booth for a few seconds. You must engage customers right away before they walk away. Offering instant gratification and the ability to instantly send the message to a friend (through a “recommend it” or “email” button on your web page, for example) greatly increases the odds that your message will be acted upon.
Customers are more likely to pass on your marketing message if they think that your product has a high “trendy” factor. If by name-dropping your product name they feel as though they are mentioning something trendy, they are more likely to mention it. You can help generate an aura of “cool” around your business with a well-designed product or service package. You should also point out in your sales literature the ways in which your business is making headlines. If you are able to get into traditional media as a hot company, you are even more likely to generate the trend factor that will make customers come to you.