Marketing Mantra September Edition – Shortlisted Entry #6 – Avinash

Viral Marketing 2020

With the passage of time the meaning and form of marketing has been changing. Marketing is no longer a static process rather has become a dynamic one. There has been a transition in marketing from production orientation to social marketing orientation. Now, viral marketing is the future.

Everyone would be aware of ‘Kolaveri di’. Within three weeks of its release on YouTube, the Kolaveri Di video garnered 19 million views and was shared by 6.5 million Facebook users. It was drawing more than 10,000 tweets daily by the end of its first online week. Having garnered over 45 million views so far, it has proved with its success that viral marketing works in India too. This case study explores what made Kolaveri the sensation it became and lists the elements that make up an ideal viral marketing campaign in India. Viral marketing is the Internet advertising or marketing that spreads exponentially whenever a new user is added. Viral marketing assumes that as each new user starts using the service or product, the advertising will go to everyone with whom that user interacts. Viral marketing has a huge potential not only because of a single factor but due to multi-dimensional factors. There has been an increasing social media penetration among the people. A research shows people in Britain spend more than 8hours and 41minutes using media per day. Habits of people have been changed. People spend more time online for anything or everything that they need.
For example: – People prefer to read news online than to read news conventionally through newspapers.

Viral marketing in 2020 would be a reality due to various reasons. Online is a far more cost efficient for advertisers. (Ex. uploading videos through social media is far cheaper than buying television commercial space.) It can target the masses with its far greater reach since the internet is a worldwide market.
(Eg. The Ikea campaign began in Sweden and was shared and recognized throughout the globe).

Frequency is greater since it is shared through social media with repetitive views and clicks. (E.g. A successfully executed campaign with creativity and humor demands multiple views, such as the Samsung’s The Next Big Thing. This increases the chance of the target viewing the promotion multiple times and creates a lasting message.) There is an element of interactivity which is the key factor of social media marketing is being successful both consumer side and manufacturer side (where he gets feedback through comments and reviews). Interactivity as a key element in a campaign allows not only for consumer feedback on a product/brand, but allows the target to become involved with the brand and establish a meaningful connection with it.  (Ex. Blendtec’s ‘Will it Blend’ campaign allowed viewers to send in email suggestions of what should be blended next.

Old Spice responded directly to individual tweets/emails with a personalized video featuring the Old Spice Man.  Burger King’s ‘Subservient Chicken’ campaign allowed users to type commands for a man in a chicken suit to perform.  The Dark Knight campaigns took interactivity to the next level, and unlocked special sneak peek trailers through fan participation, as well as invited fans to participate in various rallies and events. The list goes on and on, as interactivity is clearly an integral part of a successful viral marketing campaign.) The ease of sharing information is becoming more intuitive by the day through smartphones, tablets and other internet-enabled devices which will make online viral marketing far more appealing than other mediums. (E.g.:- You can scroll down to the bottom of this page and share this to Facebook, Twitter, or Google+ with a single click.)

With all the advantages, viral marketing is a viable option for the future as long as the advertisers reinforce their campaigns with solid execution and integrity. For example is the Valve campaign in which the company provided their fan base an opportunity to impact the release date of an upcoming popular title however in the end could not deliver, which speaks volumes to the fact that execution is absolutely key.

In 2020, Companies and organizations would be busy in making viral videos rather ads for TVs or newspapers. Most of them would be focusing on making viral video for simple ads too with the technology and resourced that is available with them. We might have ‘house for rent’ classified in newspaper replaced with a viral video for it in an youtube channel. Ads and ad campaigns might be competing for likes and hits rather TRPs. There would be daily record brakes of no: of likes and hits very often and also new figures and landmarks set in the field of Viral Marketing. Social media platforms would increase their servers and technology to accommodate viral ad campaigns. People might be more interested following the mannerisms and tag lines of the ad campaigns rather than that of dialogues and mannerisms in movies.

Overall, viral marketing campaigns have provided a fresh addition to the ever diverse advertising industry. With so many successful campaigns, it is hard to overlook the impact this type of marketing can have. As technological advancements continue to develop, advertisers are provided limitless opportunities to reach consumers through smartphones, tablets and other internet-enabled devices. With this in mind, online viral marketing can target individuals no matter where they reside. For these reasons, it was the group’s consensus that online viral marketing will not only be a player as the most used medium by 2020, it will be the leader.


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