The EntreTech Forum is an excellent opportunity to network with professionals in the Boston area. They have monthly meetings focused on technology and wouldn’t you know that this past week was dubbed “Leveraging Viral Marketing.” I always like to include my disclaimer that nothing replaces having been there, but that being said, here’s the good stuff…
Lora Kratchounova is the Principal of Scratch Marketing + Media. She gave a presentation that went through recent history of corporate marketing from the 1980’s, 90’s, and the new millennium. She proposed that marketing has evolved from a focus on the past to a focus on the present, and is now shifting to a focus on the future. People want to feel comfortable with their brands and are willing to pay for quality and peace of mind. Sure having a great track record is nice, but more important are those intangible good feelings about the future. Toyota is a prime example of a company with an impressive history of safety and reliability, yet due to recent events these past few years, that reputation is holding less water. Trust in a brand goes down just as quickly as the reputation can with so much bad PR. How will they recover? The only option is to regain that trust because consumer outlook on the future is reliant on how well a company has delivered on its value proposition. The past can’t be changed, but you do control the future.
Let the customers know why they should be buying from you and deliver on all of your promises consistently. Your happy customers will become your happy brand ambassadors doing your marketing bidding for you; lest the opposite occur. If you’d like to know what happens when you upset your customers, check out Netflix’s stock… It’s not pretty and it didn’t have to happen.
Sarah Hodges is the Director of Marketing of FitnessKeeper. She has been part of a brilliant marketing team that has developed a community of over 7 million users with a budget of a whopping $0 and 0 cents. To all you entrepreneurs out there, it can be done! How? I’m glad you asked…
iPhone runs Boston Marathon – RunKeeper
Sometimes all it takes is thinking outside the box. Though easier said than done, it’s that sort of creativity that can spur exponential growth overnight. That video was shared virally through social media and traditionally media and created a sensation tied to the brand RunKeeper. The company successfully capitalized on that golden egg by offering their value proposition to all of the listeners. They also held on to those listeners by creating a community online and offering them valuable content tied to their products. Ask yourself what emotions and messages do the consumers want to share about your product? Runkeeper made it easy for them to congregate and share. Doing so fosters ideas, comments, critiques and opportunities- all of which are positives.
The moral of the story is to think of a way to captivate the minds, and tie that to your brand. It may not happen in a brainstorming session, but give it time and an honest effort. Think about what success means to you before embarking and make it happen. Viral marketing is a product of hard work, dedication and creativity.
Want to know more about what the expert say about viral marketing? Stay tuned for part 2 early next week! (Why not Comment and Share this blog post while you’re waiting? )
2 thoughts on “The Experts’ Advice on Viral Marketing in 2012 (Part 1 of 2)”
I think you said it perfectly when you said that “your happy customers will be your happy ambassadors”. The best companies come from good service and referrals, but today you have to look at social marketing as well. Viral marketing through these mediums, as well as having your friends and customers spreading it through their friends can bring in more business and traffic to your business site.
Having an integrated approach is key. It’s like one giant puzzle where social media is a piece of the larger marketing picture. Everyone like to hope for virality, but realistically, results will come from having a solid plan and staying with it through the long haul.
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