Viral marketing is not a new way of making money online, but it is more popular than ever before. Basically viral marketing is a way of gaining brand awareness by plugging into an existing social network. Word of mouth advertising is a good example. As word spreads across the membership, it’s not long before the entire membership knows about it. But then, everyone they come into contact with will be made aware of the brand as well. Then everyone they come into contact with, and so on and so on. So just like the flu bug spreading through the classroom or office, the brand name is “virally” transmitted from person to person.
Viral marketing is an important tool for making money online. So how to do it? Below are some techniques and important considerations when beginning such a program.
First, give away something for free. Find something of value to the social network. Free ebooks, free samples of a product, or free online courses are some good choices as they are inexpensive and easy to manage. The easiest way to offer these is through an opt-in screen on a website. In exchange for the visitors email address, offer something of value for free. If there is value, it will spread from person to person.
Of course, the free product is branded to increase brand awareness in the market, but furthermore embedded with affiliate links to related products and services. Start to see how huge making money online is with viral marketing?
It’s important to make the “virus” easy to transmit. A virus will not attempt to leave its host by itself, it must be transmitted from person to person, and the easier the better. Use emails, website links, videos, podcasts, etc. to make the content easy to forward. When the content is first discovered, and the reader/viewer is excited by it, it should be super simple for them to take that excitement and send the content to everyone they know. Don’t make it too difficult, or the excitement will soon fade.
Another technique is setting up a forum within the niche market. Allow people to use the forum freely and promote their own websites or interests. Brand the forum, so it becomes a recognized name. Some webmasters won’t have their own discussion boards and are eager to find a forum to call home. Give them a place to offer a discussion board about their website, and in turn they will bring new traffic to be infected by the viral brand.
Of course article submission (like this one) is a powerful form of viral marketing. This is an effective way of making money online. By submitting one article to a directory, such as this, it reaches the membership. But if each member used this article as content on their site, this one article would then appear 1000’s of times across the net. How many more people would that reach, then replicate, over and over. This is the viral effect of article marketing.
Look for products with “branding rights”. This means the product (ebook, software, etc.) can be re-branded to reflect the new owners name and url. In this way it appears to have been created by the new owner all along. While there is an abundance of these products online, make sure to search diligently for quality. Only provide subscribers (potential customers) with quality content.
Viral marketing has been around offline forever, like simple word of mouth. But with the introduction of the internet, it is now even easier to launch and transmit a viral marketing piece. In fact the world wide web is the perfect medium for making money online with viral marketing.