Why viral buzz is priceless…

By: ispeculatornew
Date posted: 08.12.2009 (5:00 am) | Write a Comment  (1 Comment)

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twitterWhen advertising a product, especially an online one, advertising or marketing it usually goes one of two ways; paid or viral. Paid advertising, the more known method, is the one Microsoft is currently using to promote Bing, paying millions of dollars to have advertisements in magazines, on tv, on websites, paying other websites to use its brand, etc. It is a method that can work very well of course, but can prove very costly. The major challenge is having a good enough product for users to end up using it even when the paid promotions cool off.

The other method is nowadays known as “viral advertising”. It happens when something is so “cool” that users spread the word, talk about it and it becomes a buzz in itself. Even better is when it reaches the point where the media talks about it. That is how Google and Facebook have became so popular; both had nearly 0$ for promotion. And it is now very true of Twitter. Just look at the image on the left, with New York mayor Michael bloomberg receiving lessons on how to use Twitter. Having celebrities such as Ashton Kutcher and Barack Obama use the service and mention it is priceless and even with the stack of cash that Microsoft has, there is just no way that they can compete with such advertisement.

Of course, Microsoft is probably hoping that at some point its product will be so adored by its users that it will be able to spread through viral marketing instead of the costly and less effective traditional one. Why do I say it is less effective? Of course it is debatable but generally, users are fairly immune to ads, that is they often do not even see them and it is thus very difficult to be effective in such campaigns. On the other hand, in viral advertisement, your friends will often be the ones pushing for you to try out a product and studies have shown time after time that such a method is very efficient.

The tough part of course is how to have a product that has the potential for a viral buzz and even more difficult is to generate it. there are many theories but in my opinion, the best one surrounds the book the Tipping Point, which explains how certain products suddenly become popular. I recommend you reading it if you have not yet had the opportunity.

So just for a few days, pay attention to the amount of times that you hear, see or watch anything related to Twitter and remember that in all cases, Twitter is getting this advertisement free of any charge…

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1 Comment

  1. Pingback by BillShrink $250 Cash Giveaway Winner Announced! — August 12, 2009 @ 6:57 pm

    […] Intelligent Speculator: Why Viral Buzz Is Priceless… […]

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