Using Videos in Viral Marketing
More and more advertisers are adopting video as broadband continues to rise and ad-serving technologies become more sophisticated. Online video advertising is really taking off. Users’ attention can be captured and ads stand out from the crowd in an increasingly ad-cluttered online environment. It is true that video formats cost five to ten times more to serve than standard banners and they involve a lot more production and implementation work but they may well be worth all of that if they achieve greater response rates.
Where to use online video if wishing to maximize its effect, is what advertisers must carefully consider. Video to be used on the Internet should be information and communication focused while video to be used on television should be focused on entertainment.
Like everything else, there are good ways and bad ways to use video advertising. Right now most marketers are incorporating their audio-visual content into existing embedded ad formats like banners or over-content formats like pop-ups. Though this could reach a potentially large audience, viewers are likely to be less captivated and more annoyed by these disruptive and distracting placements.
Cached or streaming video on a specific destination site offers the best chance of interesting consumers in brand messages, but it is not likely to reach a large audience unless it generates a viral outcome.
Whatever you come up with, don’t forget to make it easy to open and distribute. File size is important, as is the media format. If your viral video has been created for a particular type of software that not many people use, how will you get people to spread it like wildfire?
Also, if you’ve made a video the impact will be better if you send the clip as an attachment rather than stream it. It’s cheaper and, if you’re not hosting it, it’s more viral, too.
Why and How E-mail Viral Marketing Works
What does a virus have to do with marketing? Viral marketing describes any strategy that encourages individuals to pass on a marketing message to others, creating the potential for exponential growth in the message’s exposure and influence. Like viruses, such strategies take advantage of rapid multiplication to explode the message to thousands and then to millions.
Public health nurses offer sage advice at flu season: stay away from people who cough, wash your hands often, and don’t touch your eyes, nose, or mouth. Viruses only spread when they’re easy to transmit. Viral e-mail marketing works great on the Internet because instant communication has become so easy and inexpensive. Digital format make copying simple. From a marketing standpoint, you must simplify your marketing message so it can be transmitted easily and without degradation. Short is better. Remember the K.I.S.S. standard….Keep it Simple Stupid. The shorter and easier to remember is always better than long and complicated.
Clever viral marketing plans take advantage of common human motivations. The desire to be cool and greed drives people. So does the hunger to be popular, loved, and understood. The resulting urge to communicate produces millions of websites and billions of e-mail messages.
Most people are social. Nerdy, basement-dwelling computer science grad students are the exception. Social scientists tell us that each person has a network of 8 to 12 people in their close network of friends, family, and associates. People on the Internet develop networks of relationships, too. They collect e-mail addresses and favorite website URLs. Affiliate programs exploit such networks, as do permission e-mail lists. Learn to place your message into existing communications between people, and you rapidly multiply its dispersion.
If you can design a marketing strategy that builds on common motivations and behaviors for its transmission, you have a winner.
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