So You Want To Go Viral?

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This is a presentation given Sept.15, 2010 for BrightTalk. The subject is a basic primer for viral marketing using social media to create brand 'buzz'. The presented is Michael Crosson, a recognized expert in social media, publisher of SocialMediopolis.com, and the founder of the largest social media marketing group on LinkedIn, with over 95,000 members.

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So You Want To Go Viral?

  1. 1. The Fundamentals of Using Social Media & Word of Mouth to Create Brand Buzz
  2. 2. Here’s how the conversation usually starts: Viral? That’s good. A lot of people could potentially see it. No, that’s bad. It’s impossible to control. But if it’s done right, it can be unbelievably valuable. And if we screw it up, it will bite us in the a**. Then let’s do it right. Ok, you go first. I’ll watch. Fine, start by following me on Twitter. Twitter? What’s that?
  3. 3. Why bother with this ‘viral’ stuff? Because media has changed. YOU
  4. 4. And because the Conversation has evolved
  5. 5. So, what exactly is viral marketing? Any communication that is spread socially. <ul><li>Word of Mouth (WOM) </li></ul><ul><li>Chatter/buzz </li></ul><ul><li>Street/guerilla/intercept (Mall promotions, etc.) </li></ul><ul><li>Referrals/pass-along (Sharing, Tell-a-Friend) </li></ul><ul><li>Influencer marketing (key bloggers, authors, etc.) </li></ul><ul><li>Social community activity (Facebook, Meetup, LinkedIn, etc.) </li></ul><ul><li>Incentivized sweeps/contests/promotions </li></ul><ul><li>Group action (Groupon, LivingSocial, etc.) </li></ul><ul><li>Product seeding </li></ul><ul><li>Flashmob, ambush or interrupt marketing (“spontaneous” break dance at Apple store) </li></ul>
  6. 6. Viral means interconnected <ul><li>Everything connects to everything now, making cross-pollination nearly instantaneous. </li></ul>YOU
  7. 7. Social media has become 4D, intersecting online and offline <ul><li>4D is Community, Interest, Time and Location – your social graph is mobile and moves with you </li></ul><ul><li>Effect of ‘ FourSquarification’ – individuals & groups self-identifying through common interests and geo-location instantly </li></ul><ul><li>Cross-over between web & mobile – no longer just WAP or text/SMS </li></ul><ul><li>Google Earth integration </li></ul><ul><li>Augmented reality </li></ul><ul><li>Interactive outdoor media becoming more prevalent </li></ul>
  8. 8. What makes a campaign go viral? Hitting the right MOTIVATION . <ul><li>Encourages social interaction – sharing an experience within a defined community </li></ul><ul><li>Offers rewards or incentives - getting something for performing an action </li></ul><ul><li>Improves social status – people love to be recognized, be the first to know, be hip and cool </li></ul><ul><li>Leverages brand loyalty – people want to share thus validating their personal preferences </li></ul><ul><li>Provides a creative and personal experience </li></ul>
  9. 9. Some examples
  10. 10. Some examples
  11. 11. Some examples http://mashable.com/2010/07/21/coke-happiness-machine/ Coke Machine Happiness: 1 million views in one week!
  12. 12. Some examples The Old Spice Man Twitter campaign pushed over 100 million views on YouTube In 30 days! http://mashable.com/2010/07/15/old-spice-stats/
  13. 13. Some examples Bill Gerth – @ ComcastCares customer service rep with 45,000 followers – generating a potential 90,000,000 impressions for every message he sends! That kind of exposure in paid media would be worth hundreds of thousands of dollars!
  14. 14. What are the most effective viral drivers? <ul><li>Social timeliness – what’s Lilo done today? </li></ul><ul><li>Humor - the fat Star Wars kid </li></ul><ul><li>Rewards or incentives </li></ul><ul><li>Praise & Recognition </li></ul><ul><li>Surprise/outrage - burned a Quran today? </li></ul><ul><li>Professional motivation </li></ul><ul><li>Philanthropic - desire to do good </li></ul><ul><li>Fear - H1N1 virus, global warming </li></ul><ul><li>An effective call to action </li></ul>
  15. 15. More examples The original Numa Numa guy drove over 10,000,000 views on YouTube… But some brilliant mind at an agency inserted the Geico lizard doing a dance behind him and did it all over again…
  16. 16. More examples http://www.adverblog.com/archives/003367.htm
  17. 17. More examples
  18. 18. What are the most effective viral tools? <ul><li>Email </li></ul><ul><li>Blogs </li></ul><ul><li>Instant messaging </li></ul><ul><li>Social communities (Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn, etc.) </li></ul><ul><li>Book-marking sites (Digg, Delicious, Yelp, etc.) </li></ul><ul><li>Sharing Tools ( SocialTwist’s Tell-a-Friend) </li></ul><ul><li>Video sites (YouTube, Flickr, Revver, etc.) </li></ul><ul><li>Bulletin boards </li></ul><ul><li>Mouths </li></ul>
  19. 19. What clicks in viral campaigns? <ul><li>Humor or cute factor (babies, kittens, bloopers, etc.) </li></ul><ul><li>Relevance to the user </li></ul><ul><li>Engagement (interactivity, ease of use, sharing) </li></ul><ul><li>Personalization (name, location, content) </li></ul><ul><li>Remix/mashup configurability </li></ul><ul><li>WOW factor (trick shots, extreme danger or skill, etc.) </li></ul><ul><li>Emotional appeal – sad, joyous, outrage, shock </li></ul><ul><li>David vs. Goliath syndrome – victory of the little guy </li></ul>
  20. 20. Extenders & Enhancers for viral campaigns <ul><li>Make it a series (BMW, Old Spice) </li></ul><ul><li>Make it a challenge </li></ul><ul><li>Turn it into a game </li></ul><ul><li>Add ratings and/or comments – keep the conversation going! </li></ul><ul><li>Add non-profit engagement </li></ul><ul><li>Add political engagement – Obama is a great example </li></ul><ul><li>Allow consumer customization </li></ul><ul><li>Provide value-adds for participation (music downloads, free video, unique content, etc.) </li></ul><ul><li>Tweet about it regularly </li></ul>
  21. 21. Extenders, enhancers, cont. <ul><li>Create desktop widgets (Staples, Southwest, etc.) </li></ul><ul><li>Develop mobile applications </li></ul><ul><li>Real world events tied to online promotions </li></ul><ul><li>Throw in something FREE… doesn’t matter what, so long as it’s free! </li></ul>
  22. 22. 10 critical steps to a successful viral marketing action plan <ul><li>BUILD YOUR USER BASE FIRST!! It’s hard to go viral with twelve users </li></ul><ul><li>Define your overall objectives - quantitative & qualitative </li></ul><ul><li>Set benchmarks, metrics and goals </li></ul><ul><li>Define your digital identity and brand positioning </li></ul><ul><li>Develop specific strategies for each channel – remember, one size does not fit all! </li></ul><ul><li>Choose best of breed tool sets </li></ul><ul><li>Develop multiple sets of creative with variations of each </li></ul><ul><li>Evangelize your team, partners and brand ambassadors </li></ul><ul><li>Test & monitor results </li></ul><ul><li>Adjust your strategy to focus on most promising channels, and keep testing, testing, testing </li></ul>
  23. 23. Presented by Michael Crosson <ul><li>Publisher, www.SocialMediopolis.com </li></ul><ul><li>Founder and Moderator, Social Media Marketing, with over 95,000 members on LinkedIn http://www.linkedin.com/groups?mostPopular=&gid=66325 </li></ul><ul><li>Vice-President of Sales, www.SocialTwist.com </li></ul><ul><li>Email: [email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>Ph. 415.299.0637 </li></ul>

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