Besides updating mans’ way of existing the Internet has also influenced how we do specific things including business activities. Marketing, for example, has come a long way, but the Internet is restructuring it and a most cost effective case in point is viral marketing.

Viral marketing has been around for centuries, but the concept in connection with the Internet was first used to describe Hotmails marketing practise in 1997. People who signed up for a free email account became marketing agents for hotmail by carrying the marketing message, which was simply part of their email addresses and ultimately a free advertisement every time an email was sent. A recipient clicking on the link was forwarded to the companies website where they could sign up. Using this form of marketing Hotmail left their competitors for dead.

Viral marketing is one of the most efficient ways to reach a targeted audience and communicate one’s marketing message. Known as word-of-mouth outside the framework of the Internet it is generally associated with delivering a message about a product or service and, although the theory is the same, there are many more diverse ways of employing it within the context of the Internet.

Everyone knows that a virus, which can spread notoriously easily, can explode into an epidemic within the population if not contained. Internet viral marketing is not dissimilar and the aim is to spread a marketing message from person to person. The sheer size of the Internet allows viral marketing to achieve its objective and there are many extremely efficiently ways to utilise the concept and get your product or service to as many people as possible.

Now known as possibly the best way of marketing any product there are several arguments for this consideration and probably one the best incentives is the cost. Traditional marketing techniques, because of the high continual costs they can incur, have to be done with thorough groundwork and preparation. Viral marketing, on the other hand, although not completely free, can be done with minimum expense and it’s for this reason why it is probably the top method of marketing.

Another major benefit is that there are clearly hundreds of ways of utilising this system of marketing including Article Marketing, Tell-a-friend Scripts, Email, Ezines, Newsletters, Blogging, Chat Rooms and Video Clips, but probably the best way is to give away free products, such as ebooks or software that contain your affiliate links or your own product links.

Selecting and exploiting the correct kind of viral marketing method can result in swift gains for advertisers in a short period of time and, if done properly, will not only communicate your message, but will continue to do so long after the initial set up. It is a very cost effective strategy of conveying a marketing message towards a targeted audience by encouraging other people do the advertising for you by spreading your message and it uses the Internet to its fullest extent.

Source by John Philips