Struggling to engage with consumers on social media is incredibly frustrating for business owners. Unfortunately, many businesses create content and advertisements that don’t resonate with their target audience. Still, it doesn’t make much sense to pursue a social-media strategy that fails to reach qualified leads. Given those facts, it’s hardly surprising that many businesses are beginning to introduce viral marketing techniques within their own campaigns. After all, effective viral marketing content boasts the potential to generate a huge number of impressions and inspire a surge in conversions and sales. But is there a downside to “going viral”? Here we’ll examine the pros and cons of viral marketing for small businesses and explain why it doesn’t always make sense.

How to Create Viral Marketing Content

By now, most people recognize viral marketing examples when they see them. In short, viral marketing content is designed with the intention of enticing viewers to share it. This is a vague definition, but the reality is viral marketing can take a number of guises. It might be a special product offer; or it could be a controversial statement tied to a social movement. The point is, viral content has to be eye-catching, creative, and evocative.

Viral Marketing Principles

A good number of viral campaigns that succeed are funded by companies that have already established themselves as major players in their industry. As such, brands like Ikea, Old Spice, and KFC regularly create content that picks up steam on social media. However, it is possible for small businesses to make a buzz through viral content –– though it’s considerably more difficult. Regardless, branded viral content tends to have a few things in common, such as:

  • Most viral campaigns begin with a video.
  • Viral campaigns elicit a strong emotion –– shock, awe, happiness, anger, delight, etc.
  • Viral campaigns aren’t promotional. At least not in the sense of traditional content marketing and advertising.

Viral Marketing Challenges

Naturally, every business should strive to create marketing content that’s compelling. Yet, it’s not always possible to successfully launch a viral marketing campaign. At the end of the day, it’s extremely difficult to produce viral content, and many small businesses lack the budget and resources to create videos with the potential to go viral. What’s more, attempting to spark a viral campaign by taking a political stance, for example, could backfire horribly and actively damage your brand. Lastly, though effective viral content will spike interest in your business, it may not lead to a massive increase in sales. Since viral content needs to appeal to a wide range of people, B2B companies and niche advertisers may not experience many benefits from exploring viral strategies.

Final Thoughts

As tempting as the allure of a viral campaign can be, business owners should seek out proven and efficient tactics to boost their performance on social media. At Agile & Co., we know how to produce meaningful results from digital marketing tactics, and we’ll use our experience to grow your company’s reach on social media and beyond. Contact our team to get started today, or, to learn more about our unique agile, inbound methodology, check out our free eBook here:

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