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The Ugly Truth About Viral Marketing

Sep 19, 2014

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Business

Viral marketing is a 15yo term with a lot of baggage—and we say it's time to kick it to the curb. Sure, you want your video or marketing campaign to "go viral," but viral isn't what a video or campaign is, it's a term that describes how it spreads. And unlike a real virus, which has the mechanism for spreading built right into it, your video is going to have to work a little harder. In this deck, we'll show you how and why.

  • THE (UGLY) TRUTH ABOUT VIRAL

    MARKETING. LIKE, FOR REAL.

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    VIRUS noun

    1. AN INFECTION OR DISEASE CAUSED BY AN INFECTIVE AGENT THAT IS TOO SMALL TO BE SEEN BY LIGHT MICROSCOPE AND IS ABLE TO MULTIPLY ONLY WITHIN THE LIVING CELLS OF A HOST.

    2. A HARMFUL OR CORRUPTING INFLUENCE.

    3. A PIECE OF CODE THAT IS CAPABLE OF COPYING ITSELF AND TYPICALLY HAS A DETRIMENTAL EFFECT, SUCH AS CORRUPTING THE SYSTEM OR DESTROYING DATA.

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    PHOTO BY M*RTEN ON FLICKR.COM

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    PHOTO BY CHIM CHIM ON FLICKR.COM

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  • x

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    PHOTO BY BAHMAN ON FLICKR.COM

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    PHOTO BY SARIHUELLA ON FLICKR.COM

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  • PLEASE TELL US YOU DONT WANT TO DO THIS TO YOUR CUSTOMERS.

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    WHAT YOU ACTUALLY WANT IS FOR YOUR MARKETING TO SPREAD EXPONENTIALLY, LIKE A VIRUS.

    RIGHT?

  • CONSUMER-DRIVEN MARKETING noun

    A METHOD OF PROMOTION THAT RELIES ON CUSTOMERS HELPING TO MARKET AN IDEA, PRODUCT, OR SERVICE BY CHOOSING TO SHARE SOMETHING WITH THEIR FRIENDS.

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  • FOR EXAMPLE

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  • CISCOS LARGEST AD CAMPAIGN TO DATE ASKED REGULAR FOLKS AS WELL AS CELEBRITIES LIKE STEPHEN COLBERT & USHER TO SUBMIT VIDEOS OF THEIR EVERYDAY & UNIQUE MOMENTS SHOT ON FLIP CAMERAS FOR USE IN UPCOMING TV ADS. NOT ONLY DID FLIPS CONSUMER-DRIVEN MARKETING EFFORT HELP TO CREATE HOURS OF SHARE-WORTHY CONTENT, BUT IT ALSO LED FLIP TO THE TOP CAMCORDER SPOT BY THE END OF 2009, WITH A FIRM GRASP ON 36% OF THE U.S. MARKET.

    FLIP VIDEO

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    MOUNTAIN DEW

    MOUNTAIN DEW KICKED OFF THE FIRST DEWMOCRACY CAMPAIGN BY LETTING FANS DESIGN NEW DEW FLAVORS AND PACKAGING. NOW, WITH DEWMOCRACY 2, THE CONSUMER-DRIVEN MARKETING EFFORT HAS FANS SUBMITTING, VOTING ON, & ULTIMATELY SELECTING AND CREATING MOUNTAIN DEWS NEW TV ADS.

    MORE THAN 1,000 VIDEOS WERE SUBMITTED, AND DEW'S FACEBOOK FRIENDS INCREASED 500% IN A MATTER OF WEEKS.

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  • BURGER KING BURGER KINGS WHOPPER SACRIFICE CAMPAIGN INVITED FANS TO DELETE FACEBOOK FRIENDS IN EXCHANGE FOR FREE WHOPPERS. WITHIN 10 DAYS OF THE CAMPAIGNS DEBUT, THE WHOPPER SACRIFICE APP WAS INSTALLED 60,000 TIMES. TWO WEEKS LATER SOME 85,000 PEOPLE HAD DELETED OVER 230,000 FRIENDS, PROMPTING FACEBOOK TO SHUT THE APP DOWNAND GARNERING BURGER KING A WHOPPER-SIZE PORTION OF FREE MEDIA COVERAGE.

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    AFTER 23 YEARS OF BUYING HUGE ADS DURING THE SUPERBOWL, PEPSI PASSED ON THE MOST-WATCHED TELEVISION EVENT OF ALL TIME, & ALLOCATED 1/3 OF ITS 2010 MARKETING BUDGET TO THEREFRESH PROJECT, A SOCIAL MARKETING CAMPAIGN THAT REWARDS THOSE WITH BIG IDEAS FOR SOLUTIONS TO LOCAL & GLOBAL PROBLEMS. SINCE ITS LAUNCH ON JANUARY 13, 2010, THE PROGRAM HAS RECEIVED OVER 1 BILLION MEDIA IMPRESSIONS, INCLUDING 44 MILLION BLOG POSTS, 70 MILLION TWEETS, & AMASSING 300,000 NEW FACEBOOK FANS.

    PEPSI REFRESH PROJECT

  • PARANORMAL ACTIVITY PARANORMAL ACTIVITY PUT THE POWER OF MOVIE DISTRIBUTION INTO THE HANDS OF ITS FANS, THROUGH A CAMPAIGN THAT ENCOURAGED & ENABLED THEM TO DEMAND THE MOVIE BE BROUGHT TO THEIR CITY.

    AND IT WORKED.

    MORE THAN A MILLION DEMANDS LATER, PARANORMAL GARNERED A WORLDWIDE RELEASE & GROSSED NEARLY A BILLION DOLLARS.

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  • BARACK OBAMAS PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN BARACK OBAMAS 2008 PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN USED THE POWER OF SOCIAL & DIGITAL TECHNOLOGY TO ACTIVATE, CONNECT, & EMPOWER MILLIONS OF SUPPORTERS ACROSS THE COUNTRY. WHAT MIGHT HAVE BEEN ISOLATED POCKETS OF GRASSROOTS ACTIVISM BECAME A TIDAL WAVE OF SUPPORT THAT TURNED A LITTLE-KNOWN AFRICAN AMERICAN SENATOR WITH A FUNNY-SOUNDING NAME INTO THE 44TH PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES.

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    PHOTO BY TONY THE MISFIT ON FLICKR.COM

  • VS. CONSUMER-DRIVEN MARKETING

    VIRAL MARKETING

    ASSUMES PEOPLE ARE PASSIVE HOSTS WHO HAVE NO CHOICE BUT TO PASS ON YOUR MARKETING ONCE CONTAMINATED.

    ASSUMES THE MARKETING ITSELF IS SELF-REPLICATING.

    REQUIRES THE USE OF TALKING BABIES, CUTE BABY ANIMALS, HALF-NAKED HOTTIES, &/OR MAGIC PIXIE DUST TO SUCCEED BUT MOSTLY MAGIC PIXIE DUST.

    ASSUMES PEOPLE ARE ACTIVE PARTICIPANTS IN THE PROMOTION PROCESS; MORE FANS THAN CONSUMERS.

    ASSUMES CONTENT MUST NOT ONLY BE SHARE-ABLE, BUT ALSO HIGHLY SHARE-WORTHY.

    REQUIRES A DEEP UNDERSTANDING OF HOW AND WHY PEOPLE SHARE STUFF (AND A WILLINGNESS TO PUT THOSE MOTIVATIONS FRONT AND CENTER).

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  • YOU ARE MORE LIKELY TO WAKE UP WITH YOUR HEAD SEWN TO THE CARPET THAN TO SEE YOUR NEXT MARKETING CAMPAIGN GO VIRAL.

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  • UNLESS, OF COURSE, YOU HAPPEN TO HAVE A STASH OF MAGICAL PIXIE DUST.

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  • CONSUMER-DRIVEN MARKETING RELIES ON PEOPLE

    SHARING STUFF ABOUT YOUR BRAND WITH THEIR FRIENDS.

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  • CONSUMER-DRIVEN MARKETING RELIES ON PEOPLE

    SHARING STUFF ABOUT YOUR BRAND WITH THEIR FRIENDS.

    WHY IN THE WORLD WOULD THEY

    DO THAT?

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  • A DESIRE TO EXPRESS THEMSELVES. 1

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  • A DESIRE TO BELONG. 2

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  • A DESIRE TO DO GOOD.

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  • A DESIRE TO BE NAUGHTY. 4

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  • A DESIRE TO BE RECOGNIZED. 5

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  • A DESIRE TO BUILD RELATIONSHIPS. 6

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  • DOES THE BENEFIT OF SHARING OUTWEIGH THE RISK?

    THE DEGREE TO WHICH PEOPLE SHARE YOUR STUFF BOILS DOWN TO ONE SIMPLE QUESTION:

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  • WELL, DOES IT?

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  • IN SUMMARY, HERES OUR VERY SIMPLE FORMULA FOR CONSUMER-DRIVEN MARKETING SUCCESS.

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  • IN FACT, GO WASH

    YOUR HANDS RIGHT NOW.

    1 STOP TRYING TO SPREAD VIRUSES.

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  • NOT BECAUSE YOU THINK ITS SUPER CLEVER, BUT BECAUSE IT CATERS TO ONE OF THE

    SIX REASONS PEOPLE SHARE STUFF ONLINE.

    2 CREATE STUFF THAT PEOPLE WILL WANT TO SHARE.

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  • TREAT THEM ACCORDINGLY.3 THINK OF YOUR TARGET AUDIENCE AS FANS, NOT CONSUMERS.

    PHOTO BY ANIRUDH KOUL ON FLICKR.COM

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  • MAKE IT INSANELY EASY. MAKE IT ABSURDLY FUN. LET PEOPLE COLLABORATE, TINKER, EXPERIMENT, REMIX, REPURPOSE, RECYCLE, AND REINVENT. GIVE YOUR FANS (& FUTURE FANS) A WAY TO GET SOME SKIN IN THE GAME.

    4 ENABLE, ENCOURAGE, & REWARD SHARING.

    PHOTO BY JCBEHM ON FLICKR.COM

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  • IF YOU CANT FIND ANY MAGIC PIXIE DUST, GIVE US A CALL.

    SAY HELLO, WHY DONT YOU?

    TORONTO Jacquelyn Cyr Chief Executive Officer 416 620 6773 [email protected] twitter.com/infiltrators

    BOSTON Marta Kagan Managing Director, US 617 477 5811 [email protected] twitter.com/mzkagan

    Hi, were Espresso. Nice to meet you. In case we havent made it obvious, were a bunch that firmly believes its time to stop wasting precious marketing dollars creating ads that people ignore, and focus instead on creating experiences your customers (and prospects) will love. Were super-committed to doing just that in the most cost-effective way possiblewhile never losing sight of our relentless pursuit of being Amazing at Life.

    brandinfiltration.com

  • Infiltrate Now! www.brandinfiltration.com