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Monday 5 December 2016

Is Viral Marketing the New Money Tree? (Lessons to Learn From Kony 2012)

The Internet Joins The Advertising Industry 

Ever since the emergence of the online media, the advertising industry has went through a huge revolution.

What used to be only found in newspapers, television, radio, billboards, etc, also exist in the online media now; which can be stored permanently and accessed anytime.

Majority of the people worldwide spends more of their time on the online media than any other traditional media. The online media is evolving rapidly and turning into the media that most people depend on the most these days. 

In recent years, social networking sites are trending worldwide and have managed to attract millions of users globally.

This phenomenon has caused big organisations and advertisers to target the online media, especially social networking sites to be a great platform to reach out to a large number of individuals or the intended demographics. 

The ‘Viral’ Phenomenon in Online Media 

‘Viral’ is a term constantly used to describe any form of work, production, or information that is being circulated rapidly, mainly in the internet. The term ‘viral’ was derived from the term ‘virus’, describing an effect of spreading rapidly and widely like a virus. 

Among the things that go viral in the internet, videos go viral most frequently. Ever since Youtube, a video-sharing website, was created in 2005, users are able to watch all types of videos from it and are even able to upload their own recordings and productions on Youtube.

With simple and convenient functions such as the search bar and the ‘trending videos’ section, users are able to search for videos they want to watch easily and can even watch what is trending at the moment. Furthermore, the emergence of social networking sites allow users to share these videos easily on popular social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and such.

This is where the ‘viral’ phenomenon kicks in. The videos are shared to all of their friends and connections in social networking sites. Then, the people who see it and also find it interesting might also share the video again to their own circle of friends and community. The cycle goes on and on and this is how the ‘viral’ phenomenon take place and functions. 

To make something go viral, it is essential for the content to be attention grabbing. It could be something interesting, controversial, offensive, shocking, or any other creative elements that can garner attention regardless of it being in the form of images, videos or whatsoever.

The mission here is to create something that will entice users to share it to their group of social circle, with the ultimate goal to make it circulate around the internet. 

KONY 2012 – Most Viral Video in 2012 

On 5th of March 2012, a short film called KONY 2012 was uploaded onto Youtube. It is produced by Invisible Children, Inc., an organization that aims to create awareness among the public globally to stop the Lord’s Resistance Army and its leader, Joseph Kony.

The video introduces Joseph Kony to the viewers, providing details and provoking viewers to support the organization in their actions of appealing to the officials to take the issue more heavily and deploy more troops to arrest Joseph Kony. KONY 2012 achieved more than 32 million views within its first week, and has more than 100 million views currently.

The video has been massively spread and circulated in the internet due to the use of the few major social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr.

The success of it was mainly due to the excellent videography and scriptwriting techniques that were employed in producing the video, accompanied with a strong emotional touch that touches the viewers. Users were sharing the video with their own input of opinions, expressing how it touches them and convince others to watch it as well. 

Why Viral Marketing? 

As of now, the public is even harder to please than ever. Therefore, companies must constantly come out with creative ideas to get the public’s attention.

Viral marketing does so and the circulation effect it achieves is astonishing. With that being said, viral content is not something that is easily created.

A huge amount of ideas and effort is needed in order to create something that relates to the public; something so good that when an individual sees it, he/she couldn’t resist to share it. 

Viral marketing is so successful because the content is extremely engaging and people are far more open to recommendations and testimonials from their friends compared to that of the media.

They are slightly more skeptical towards advertisements found in the media as they know organisations paid large sum of money to the media to broadcast their advertisements; while they are more likely to believe information provided from a personal source that they trust. 

As the world slowly evolves and improves, it is necessary for us to keep up with its pace and be up to date in recognising the social phenomenon.

It is undeniable that viral marketing is a great marketing and advertising tool for companies to get their message across as well as achieving brand recognition; but what makes it so special is that it also prompts the public to insert their own input into it while sharing it online, encouraging them to speak their mind and inspire them to invoke the creative and innovative potential within them.

Alternative Marketing with a 100% Delivery statistic

Consider mobile advertising done right with SMS. There is no limitation of connectivity or problems with compatibility. Reach every customer within your database to inform, educate, or to advertise your new product or service.

This method very much like social media is competitively cheaper when compared to billboard, and traditional media advertising.

Within the strategy of viral marketing impose reminders to your customers to have exposure to more than just social media channels but also through mobile channels.

Mobile is huge with penetration within Malaysia alone to be over 140%. Take on this new strategy for added growth now.