by: Jan Loyola
Advertising companies are eager to start the next viral marketing campaign that would generate the most number of sales leads for their clients in a single day. But engineering your own viral marketing campaign often requires luck, with the brutal market giving you all of their 3 seconds to decide whether it is a fail or a win.
Virality is often achieved by producing a funny or thought-provoking video, article or photo. Successful viral marketing not only entices a customer to respond to a call-to-action such as purchasing products and services or providing sales leads, it compels him to spread the marketing message to have others experience the same emotions that were aroused in him. Recipients of that message are in turn compelled to do the same.
This marketing strategy also has its disadvantages. Viral marketing have large tendencies to be misinterpreted. A great example of which is Cartoon Network’s Aqua Teen Hunger Force Colon Movie marketing campaign. The campaign paraphernalia were not only mistaken for explosives, the campaign personnel were arrested and charged with felony and the associated companies were fined $2 million as settlement for damages.
While viral marketing is most effective in a business to consumer setting, it is not that difficult to create a business-to-business marketing campaign with viral potential. There are marketers who have successfully created viral business-to-business marketing campaigns, and MarketingSherpa is good enough to provide us with a list of viral campaigns that included a few business-to-business lead generation campaign successes:
- New Rules of PR – an internet marketing consultant’s cost less lead generation campaign that targeted business executives using free downloadable e-book.
- The Quantum IT Challenge- lead generation campaign for IT executives and directors that successfully qualified sales leads for cold calling as they played the game.
- The ERP of This Century - a small marketing agency’s ambitious campaign to introduce itself to the market by appealing to the employees of a popular international software company.
Viral marketing is not just about generating buzz, spreading like wildfire, and generating new sales leads (although it is one of the most motivating results). Great marketers use viral internet campaigns to measure consumer or market reaction. Other marketers measure traffic ROI through internet analytics. By analyzing the behavioral reactions of their target market to their campaign, marketers have a better chance of duplicating the successful campaign to concentrate on a specific goal, such as sales leads generation, client profiling, or for market research surveys.