Viral marketing and web 2.0 marketing works for anyone in any type of business, located anywhere in the world.
We have two videos on the blog one is about outsourcing day care for your children to India.
The second video talks about outsourcing to India becoming something that isn't just for corporations and now individuals outsource their own jobs to India. People pass the links around to each other, and the video acquires a much larger audience than its makers expected it to garner.
The problem with trying to use a viral video to advertise a product is that you cannot always anticipate what will become a hit. Viral videos are usually random in ways that are antithetical to carefully calibrated marketing campaigns. There is no market research that would be able to dictate exactly what people want to see in a video. This was very blunt, but the challenge shifted, it wasn’t just a challenge or bet anymore, it was a caritative action. Evian found great success with its Roller Babies campaign, which is the most-viewed viral advertisement of all time.
The babies perform their routine after a title card indicates that drinking Evian water would make you feel as young and energetic as those babies. People are amused by the rollerskating babies but do not necessarily connect that imagery to the Evian brand. Specifically, the Subservient Chicken was part of the 2004 launch campaign for the TenderCrisp sandwich. When you typed commands into the website, a person dressed in a chicken suit would follow those commands.
The Blair Witch Project ranks among the best viral marketing campaign examples because it was the first mainstream film to tap into the potential of the Internet.
The viral campaign was so successful that to this day, some people still believe that the footage is authentic.
The fake police reports on the website looked legitimate, and the timeline of the legend of the Blair Witch was detailed enough to convince nearly everyone who saw the film that, even if the footage was not real, it was surely based on an extant urban myth. It was almost necessary to visit the website before seeing the film because the film, presented as an unedited and uncut stream of footage pulled straight from a camera, does not include a complete retelling of the central myth.
The previous two campaigns aimed to reach the built-in consumer bases of major corporations. It is easy to forget that The Blair Witch Project was made for only a few thousand dollars and was never expected to be a major hit. It is important to note that, in lieu of other forms of advertising, most of the early press about the film was actually about the website. In the pre-Wikipedia age, it was very difficult to get straight answers about the so-called legend of the Blair Witch. The video went viral because it was seemingly shot in one take while the man listed all of the reasons why he is more desirable than any of the viewers’ partners. His wardrobe changes slightly with each transition, and in one impressive instance, a seashell containing concert tickets falls away to reveal a towering cascade of diamonds.
When the camera pulls away for a final transition, the floor of the boat falls away, and the man is lifted up by the horse he is now riding. The ad is a stunning feat of digital imagery, which is why it was viewed and imitated so many times. The man in the commercial, Isaiah Mustafa, became a legitimate celebrity in the aftermath of the ad’s popularity. The cheeky, surreal nature of the ad placed Old Spice on par with other teen-oriented personal care brands like Axe.
It depicts all four members of the band performing a complicated dance routine on moving treadmills.
This video deserves its status as one of the best viral marketing campaign examples because its success was a watershed moment for the entire music industry.
These days, artists make music videos under the assumption that they will only be viewed on YouTube. The landscape of popular music is littered with one hit wonders, and it is a given that most bands will not have sustained success. Lost was so popular during its initial run that it launched the sci-fi genre into the mainstream. The show also proved that audiences were interested in long-form storytelling with complicated plots that lead to huge finale payoffs.
Lost was the sort of show that inspired deep analysis and discussion, so the ABC network released The Lost Experience in 2006. By giving fans the opportunity to solve online mysteries related to their favorite show, ABC created a captive audience for advertising. Obama’s youthful and personable public image lent itself to promo tools like Facebook pages and Twitter feeds. When Obama won, he implicitly shared the credit with everyone who had even a minimal awareness of his online presence. The impact of viral campaigns is significant, even if you believe that advertisements do not qualify as valuable media. Just like commercial jingles and cartoon cereal mascots, viral campaigns are memorable because they dovetail with forms of entertainment that people already enjoy. Viral marketing campaigns are the natural result of the proliferation of DIY media projects and social network usage. In some cases, the Internet viral marketing campaigns below just did not take off but in other cases they backfired causing negative instead of positive publicity. Here is a good example of what happens when a seemingly good idea does not scale to the exponential power of online word of mouse. Sony is on the list of some of the biggest companies in the world that tried to create online buzz through what many saw as outright trickery. This viral marketing example brings up the question of whether some brands are just unmarketable online. I grew up with the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and had not heard of the ATHF cartoon show before this interesting case study came to my attention. I cannot resist saying a few more words about the Toyota campaign which, apart from the gross misjudgment on the part of the marketing executives involved, is actually a pretty good example of Internet viral marketing. Do you have insights, strategies or a story about viral marketing to share with other readers?
There is an enormous differences between viral video examples and viral marketing examples. In this viral marketing example you’re going to see how ThePianoGuys are using their videos to create fans, generate revenue, grow their list and become pop icons. They start with YouTube, but these guys aren’t using a Flip Camera in their car on the way to work.
To increase the number of individual people who are promoting it, the video’s description lists all the people who contributed to the making of the video. If your marketing plan stops at people listening to your song once, you’re really relying on hope. Giving the song download to you free is another way to increase the chances the song will become a viral hit.
Additional annotations in the video request that you subscribe to their YouTube Channel which means you’re more likely to see their next video when you log into YouTube, and more likely to see this video again.


Finally, after the song is over and before the video is done, Steven Sharp Nelson and Al van der Beek, the stars of the video, come on screen and ask that you do all these things. The YouTube button on the page gives you the option to subscribe to their channel (instead of sharing it). After you share the video with your social media audience, you get to go to their download page, which is also brilliantly put together. Unfortunately, they still don’t capture your contact information if you choose just to download the song. In any case, the entire campaign is well crafted.  Can you think of anything that would have made this a better campaign? At least that was the case for notorious Sweet Brown during her interview about a fire at her apartment complex.
Popular sites like Upworthy and Buzzfeed are perfect examples of modern content creators with the concept of virality down to a T. Our natural compulsion to share something may be directly related to how much we believe others will enjoy it. Psychiatrists and other medical professionals understand the science of viral content – but so do marketers. Understanding the human desire to share and manipulating the shareworthy area of the brain, modern marketers go to great lengths to ensure content is shared optimally across the social sphere. We have a client on the other side of the world who wants to offer their services to business owners in the United States. The people of India are said to outsource the jobs that are outsourced to them to even poorer people in India. A viral video is a bit of online media that becomes a sensation and all of these viral marketing examples are proof of it. Attaching a brand name to a video is a great way for a company to expose itself to people who might not otherwise be interested in that brand.
A video goes viral because there is something new or exciting about it that resonates with people.
Just because millions of people watched the Roller Babies video does not mean that those people proceeded to go out and buy bottled water.
It is possible that the target audience for a video of animated babies is not the same demographic of people who would ever by Evian water under any circumstances.
Unlike Evian, Burger King managed to come up with a viral concept that related to its products without being a literal representation of anything it sells.
Though the website for the Subservient Chicken was targeted toward young men, people of all ages and genders visited it.
The goal was to reach people who would not see commercials for the TenderCrisp on television because they were too busy watching videos on the Internet.
The site was very clever because it seemed to anticipate all possible commands; the person in the chicken suit had been filmed previously, and that was the footage that you saw when you wanted to watch the chicken performing certain actions.
When the film was released in 1999, social media profiles did not exist yet, nor did user-friendly video platforms like YouTube. The premise of the film is that it is comprised of real documentary footage of an unsuccessful search for the truth behind an urban legend.
In reality, the film starred hired actors who followed a loose script and filmed themselves on hand-held cameras.
Another aspect of The Blair Witch Project’s website that makes it one of the best viral marketing campaign examples of all time is that its success was utterly accidental.
The site for The Blair Witch Project was meant to be an inexpensive marketing tool for an independent film that had not advertising budget. Instead of paying for television commercials, the studio opted to set up and maintain a website. Early reviews of the movie were positive, and major media outlets began reporting on the site, which sparked a public discourse about whether the events in the film were true or not.
People became wrapped up in the mystique surrounding the film and felt like they needed to see it to find out the truth. While he spoke, the background changed behind him, transporting him from a bathroom to a boat and then to a tropical beach. The ad helped transform Old Spice from a brand that many people associated with their grandfathers into one that younger people felt spoke to them. This commercial is unique among the best viral marketing campaign examples because it is so inextricably tied to the product it is promoting.
Like the Old Spice ad, this music video inspired imitators to film themselves performing the treadmill dance. They know that their videos will probably never be played on music channels, so they make videos for their fans to pass around in miniature viral campaigns of their own.
Like most viral sensations, the band has not been able to recreate the success of its first big hit. Its early promotion was fairly similar to that of The Blair Witch Project, at least conceptually.
In fact, the island setting made many viewers think that they were tuning into a reality show at first. The campaign flattered fans’ intelligence by giving them phone numbers to call in cryptic commercials. This is one of the best viral marketing campaign examples to be an offshoot of equally large and expensive campaigns in other forms of media. You were made to feel that you were doing your patriotic duty by spreading the latest updates about his campaign. Just like you shared President Obama’s Facebook status updates, you insert yourself into cultural moments just by being a consumer.
When you share viral campaigns, you are entertaining your friends and doing PR departments’ jobs for them.
I have discussed the ingredients of online viral marketing campaigns as being networks, passability and remarkability and have highlighted why some famous viral marketing campaigns were so successful. When the Starbucks Coffee Company decided to release an online coupon to promote their line of iced beverages in the summer of 2006, they did not count on the message going viral.
Whether or not their motives were sincere or not, we may never know but in the months before Christmas of 2006 they hired a guerrilla marketing firm to create a fake blog to promote its Playstation Portable (PSP) game console. As well, we have to consider the difference between viral marketing and the more commonplace online branding, both of which Walmart has tried and failed at in recent years.
In promoting a movie release back in 2007 the makers of the show hired a Guerrilla Marketing firm to put up mysterious electronic mini billboards featuring a character from the movie around several major U.S. If you can swallow the horrible idea that making people think that they were being stalked is good promotion, you might admire the fact that Toyota's campaign contained a number of integrated as well as interactive components. Firstly, the way the Toyota marketers figured they would trick people is by having friends sign them up to the joke unknowingly.
An ingenious campaign by VariTalk to let fans send personalized phone messages to friends in lead actor Samuel L. This oddly titled clip is based on an Internet meme - an idea that gains huge cultural significance as described in detail in Seth Godin's foundational e-book on Internet viral marketing - called a€?All your base are belong to usa€? (or a€?AYBABTUa€?). Perhaps you have been able to achieve viral marketing success or want to recall another major viral marketing success or flop!
Any one of their four main keywords (Cello Wars, Star Wars Parody, Lightsaber Duel, and Steven Sharp Nelson) will drive traffic that has an immediate interest in the video.
These links actually contribute to the video rising in the organic YouTube search rankings.
The Dairy Queen Shaving Bunnies commercial is funny to me, but I’m only going to forward that to people who I think will also find it amusing.


Anytime your video involves more than just you in your bedroom talking, you’ve got an opportunity to appeal to many groups. In this case they mention 17 people and organizations who are likely to promote the video just because they’re mentioned in it. Prior to the influx of iTunes and .mp3 players, hit songs were made by radio stations who played songs over and over and over again.
Websites that promote free things and deals will list it for their fans; I even found a Star Wars related site that is pushing their audience to the free download. Normally, I would say they made a mistake at the squeeze page when they didn’t ask for your contact information, but in this case they have an opportunity to get that information one more time before losing your attention. Then along the right hand column, they feature 14 different ways to donate money starting at $10 and ending at $1,000,000.
Her infamous line, “Ain’t Nobody Got Time for That!” earned Sweet Brown not only millions of views and shares on social media but a spot on a local dentist commercial, too. According to the Temporal Parietal Junction, content must not only be interesting but also provide value to someone else – in terms of appeal, enjoyability and usefulness – in order to be shareworthy. The most successful viral content marketers consider their audience and its motivation to share – so that the message spreads like wildfire from one social media network to another. The footage of the babies was no more relevant to Evian than it would have been to any brand.
It is a testament to Mustafa’s charisma and the unique concept of the ad that it worked as a literal commercial. Unlike businesses, a band can either fade away or move on to other promotional tactics after having a viral hit. Superhero films and shows about aliens and zombies are currently considered cool because of Lost.
The simple act of signing up for a Twitter account made Americans confident in Obama’s ability to adequately serve and represent them.
In this article I want to look at the flipside which is big online viral campaigns that fizzled. In other cases, companies tried to be too clever or even downright deceptive and sought viral marketing stardom by a€?flogginga€? - fake blogging a€“ and other online a€?no nosa€?. The coupon was intended for use by Starbucks employees in a select number of states but ended up being posted all over the web and e-mailed to countless others. It is hard to estimate just how many people got a hold of the coupon but soon stores all over the world were receiving it and many had to stop honoring it which led to negative publicity. The a€?floga€? was entitled a€?All I Want for Xmas is a PSPa€? and purported to chronicle the efforts of a couple of teenagers trying to convince their parents to buy them a PSP for Christmas that year. Perhaps if they had let viewers know that it was a marketing gimmick things would have worked out, or at least not turned out so bad. The company has suffered a number of prominent online viral marketing and social networking mishaps that would seem to indicate that, well, the brand is just not web-ready.
This a great example of built in passability which is one of the ingredients of viral marketing. The phrase comes from a badly translated line from a Japanese video game became an Internet sensation because of its absurd hilarity. The word a€?memesa€? was coined by famed evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins in his groundbreaking 1976 book a€?The Selfish Genea€?. From a keyword perspective they use terms like Cello and George Lucas, words that typically describe and support the main title keywords giving the video even more relevance for those keywords. YouTube values links to social sites, other videos, the subscribe button and places to find more information. Even the tiny reference to the Sony F3 is likely to get Sony’s attention, appreciation and promotion. Today that frequency requires getting the song on the playlists of thousands of music lovers. Once the song is in your iTunes playlist rotation, they will have a chance to be heard over and over again – turning one-time viewers into fans.
And they don’t stop at advertising the free download, they also include a link to their Facebook page and one to their static website. In most cases a page like this asks for your name and email address in exchange for a free report, for example. I suppose they’ve exchanged the opportunity to email you with the chance to make their work spread even further.
Sweet Brown’s epic punch line even warranted an autotune remix – a hilarious song that went just as viral as the original video.
Mother always taught you sharing was caring – and today, more marketers care about your desire to share than ever before. So in this viral marketing example we didn't need to think of something funny about outsourcing to India we only had to make use of what was already available to us on the Internet. In some cases, companies were simply ignorant of the undesirable and unforeseen consequences of their seemingly innocuous marketing activities. Instead, the site posted fake comments by fictitious visitors and the marketing gurus also manufactured fake viral tie-ins to other websites and event a rap video by a fake a€?Cousin Petea€?. Walmart has tried to build an online shopping presence for years but that has not worked either. A public Facebook page Walmart put up in 2007 came to an early end when users began posting criticism and even vandalized the page. It is a great concept when done right but the Chevrolet campaign created such mixed results that to this day it is hard to say whether or not it was a a€?successa€?.
While it seems like a good idea, they triggered a bomb scare in the City of Boston which took the devices to be similar to improvised LEDs. While this is not really a case of Internet viral marketing (which needs to be tied into an online presence), it does bear mentioning as a case where efforts to create a bang can be misconstrued or grossly overdone.
Online viral tie-ins like fake e-mails and MySpace pages were then supplemented by fake bills in the mail and other real life artifacts. Like genes, memes are evolutionary a€?building blocksa€? but of of thoughts, ideas or concepts that are transmitted from person to person and down generations. And with people sharing their playlists on Facebook and via Spotify – even more people will be introduced to the music. In this case to get the free music download, you’re required to share the video with your audience on one of your other social media sites.
It also tried so hard to be a€?trendya€? by misusing teen coolspeak that the ploy became obvious. Walmart deserves credit for the interactive features of the page such as quizzes and tie-ins to products and services, but the company did not anticipate the backlash of the online community. It may just have been a bad decision by giving a mouthpiece to the anti-SUV crowd just as the many opponents of Walmart's policies and practices have a forum online. Chevy bought an entire episode of the hit TV show a€?The Apprenticea€? in which Donald Trump's would-be apprentices sold car dealers on buying Tahoes.
Internet memes expand on this by using the exponential power of the worldwide web in connecting unlimited numbers of people instantaneously. The same happened in 2006 with a blog called a€?Walmarting Across Americaa€? about a couple traveling across the country in an RV and spending nights in Walmart parking lots.
As an online tie-in, the company created a website that gave viewers video clips and the editing tools to create their own versions of ads. Viral marketing in a sense is an effort to manufacture memes so that they become the medium through which a marketing messages are transmitted.
There were over 600,000 visitors to the site over 3 weeks with 30,000 ads created by users. While the vast majority of ads were well-meaning, a significant number of anti-SUV ads that subsequently went viral on sites like YouTube created a large amount of bad publicity for Chevy.



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