With Some Structural Thinking, Viral Marketing Can Be a Viable Strategy for Businesses Too.

Viral marketing is often regarded as the holy grail of marketing—exceptionally effective and cost-efficient, but elusive and something of an art. In order for businesses to utilize viral marketing strategies on a more consistent basis, it is helpful to build some structure around them. A recent TEDx presentation provides one useful framework for this purpose:

[1] Watch the TEDx presentation on viral marketing below.

With Some Structural Thinking, Viral Marketing Can Be a Viable Strategy for Businesses Too (A).

When considering viral marketing strategies, marketers need to emphasize on the function of the content (i.e. to humor, to self-identify, to connect people, to educate, or to lift spirits) over its form. While visually entertaining content can be helpful towards increasing virality, entertainment alone is unlikely to be a sufficient catalyst.

In addition, marketers should attempt to compound the functions: a content that simultaneously humors, enables audiences to self-identify, and connects them to family members, for example, has a higher success rate of going viral. Not only does this  increase reach, compounding functions also makes the content more memorable due to the principles of elevation, insight, pride, and connection.

[2] Read more about memorability and the principles of elevation, insight, pride, and connection at Wharton.

With Some Structural Thinking, Viral Marketing Can Be a Viable Strategy for Businesses Too (B).

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