Social Media Innovation by Prof. Johnson

Viral Marketing and the Power of Networks

Viral Marketing and the Power of Networks

The essence of viral marketing is when a satisfied adopter tells two friends about a product and, then they’ll tell two friends about it, and so on. The power of such compounding can be seen in the parable of the ruler and the chessboard.

Successful viral marketing has three major challenges to overcome:

- Initial product adoption: do I need shampoo and I am willing to try a new brand?

- Adoption attrition (e.g., keeping churn rates low); will I buy the same brand again?

- Product recommendation: how many others will I recommend the product to?

Discussion Question

  • What examples can you think of where you have participated in viral marketing of a product or service?
  • Thinking about this week’s reading on network effects, do you think viral marketing is more or less likely to be successful for products with network effects?

Task 14 Completion Criteria (20 points)

Post a comment below with a link to your well-written post on this discussion topic.

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