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What Is Viral Marketing In Digital Marketing? A To Z Guide

27 Oct 2022

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Every now and then we hear a post, or content going viral. Sometimes a meme, a post, or a video suddenly becomes popular. So, what is the reason behind it? Is it a trend or luck behind it? Well, it’s not because of luck. It is because of Viral Marketing. These types of content are well-planned strategically. Brands constantly try to make their content go viral because their ultimate goal is to reach out to the maximum audience possible. To make this easy for you this blog covers a clear understanding of the viral marketing concept, examples, its benefits, and some trick and tips to create viral content.

What is Viral Marketing?

Before diving deep into the concept, it is important to know what is viral marketing in digital marketingViral marketing is part of a digital marketing strategy wherein the goal is to make the audience like and share the content. The ultimate goal is increased word-of-mouth marketing and social share. This type of marketing can take any form like e-mail campaigns, viral memes, viral videos, etc. Even the name of this type of marketing means the content is shared from person to person just like a viral infection. 

But, with the great potential of getting the content viral comes the risk of failing to do so. The business often incurs the cost of coming up with such a post but sometimes it’s possible that the post didn’t satisfy the audience, and thus the goal of the campaign is not achieved. The piece of content has a high possibility of getting viral when shared by a big celebrity or personality on social media. This might result in an increase in the number of likes, shares, comments, and other such engagements. The key to this type of marketing is faster the engagement is increased the more it will be pushed by social media algorithms. 

Now that you know, what is viral marketing, let’s see some of the benefits of viral marketing.

What is Viral Marketing:  Benefits of Viral Marketing 

In the era of social media, viral marketing can be very beneficial for your business. The key benefits of using viral marketing are mentioned below: 


Budget-strategy in viral marketing is very essential. The campaign production process and budget allocation initially are the same as other posts and content.

In the beginning that particular project needs a little push i.e. in the form of paid promotion. While as the content is liked by the audience, word-of-mouth marketing will get started and you can pull back your budget. The organic reach will do the work for you. The distribution cost will decrease and it will yield higher results and thus will become cost-effective for the business.

Not Invasive in Nature 

Certain content is invasive for the audiences like Youtube 30 sec non-skippable ads. This type of ad and content irritates the user and doesn’t yield a positive result. But, in the case of viral marketing, the content is shared with the audience by their know people like relatives or friends due to high profitability. The audience can decide when, where, and how to consume it and thus it is non-invasive in nature. 

High Reach 

The exact and ultimate goal of viral marketing is to reach the right audience in huge numbers. Millions of people can witness a good viral marketing campaign, and it may even get mainstream media coverage. A creative viral marketing campaign can help even a tiny business reach a global audience. 

If the creative efforts strike the mark, it’ll produce content that is so amazing that users will share it and form a bond with your company. It is unquestionably a very effective instrument for branding and raising awareness.

High Lead Generation 

The leads in sales are of different types like hot, and cold leads. The audience from viral marketing might not be the immediate buyer of your products/services but they know about your business and would love to keep you in the mind. The lead generated from the viral marketing is The business that is B2C that is they directly deal with the customer will be benefited most from the viral marketing. 

What is Viral Marketing: Viral Marketing Examples

As internet users have increased over time, viral and interesting content encourages the audience to jump into the trend and engage with it. Below mentioned are a few of the most famous viral marketing campaigns:

Zoom Background Challenge 

During the time of the pandemic, when people were stuck at home, they mostly communicated through online meeting platforms. Students, and working people, all relied on this platform to communicate with one another and to continue their learnings and workings. To make things a little different and interesting, Zoom came up with a virtual background challenge. The participants can share their videos or pictures with creative virtual backgrounds.

The platform also announced a monthly competition with 3 prizes and winners. The creativity behind the campaign led to its success of the campaign in 2020.

Ice bucket challenge 

The challenge was started as the ALS ice bucket challenge. The basic goal behind the challenge was to raise awareness and donations for the disease i.e. Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis. 

After knowing the good cause behind the challenge, many big personalities like Bill Gates, and Justin Bieber came forward and took part in the same. The campaign was successful as it raised 25% more donations compared to the last year.

Shot on iPhone 

The very famous brand Apple introduced the concept of shot on iPhone at the launched iPhone X. The campaign was introduced to grab the attention of the audience on the camera quality of the product. 
The campaign included clicking and posting the selfie that created a huge buzz in the market. This encouraged the people to shoot on the phone. The pictures of the videos didn’t have any direct link to the brand or product instead just the tag “shot on iPhone”.

Elements that Make the Viral Marketing Successful

Many brands try their hands-on viral marketing, but not every one of them is successful. To get the campaign get successful, there are certain elements brands need to make sure are tick marked. Some of the elements are mentioned below: 

  • Follow the Trend 
The popular trending things can work for your business. When brands include a viral sensation in their content, many brands frequently notice an increase in the number of followers. Since the virality only continues while the trend captures consumers' interest, this is a continuous effort.
  • Try the emotional touch 
Including an emotional connection in your content is one of the best ways to make it go viral. People are typically moved by a cause that is close to their hearts, so if you can appeal to those emotions, a significant portion of the audience will immediately notice and spread your content
  • Collaborate with influencers 
By introducing your business to its committed audience, influencers can help your campaign succeed. Many companies use celebrities in their marketing to spread their word to those who would be very hard to reach otherwise.
  • Make the campaign related to a target audience 
  • Notice what is dominating the market

By accelerating the sharing process, these influencers can frequently kickstart buzz creation and contribute to making the campaign go viral. Also, your campaign's content needs to strike a connection with the target audience in order to go viral. Posting material that they believe would benefit the brand is among the biggest failures that brands make. As a result, as the content fails to hold their interest, the number of viewers starts to fall.

It's essential to pay close attention to what's shared and what content concepts or delivery styles have the potential to become viral. You need to keep an eye out for a few social media measures that assist in identifying the viral marketing of content in order to get an information strategy to simplify the issues. Some of the matrixes are: It is incomplete

What is Viral Marketing: Best Tips and Tricks for Viral Marketing 

Now that you’re clear with what is viral marketing in digital marketing and have also seen practical exams, let’s see advanced-level strategies that will help you push your content.

Focus on Video

If as a brand, you’re confused and can’t decide among the different formats for your campaign, you should definitely go for the video format.  Different formats like images, blogs, and e-books are less prone to get featured and shared compared to video format. 

Also, other than that there are two reasons for selecting the video format:

Videos are highly emotional and visually preferable 
Videos when published on YouTube naturally boost engagement.

The video content will need only the initial push but with every engagement, the platform’s algorithm will support you.

Promote your Content 

Now, as a brand you’ve created content that you’re sure is capable of going viral. Instead of just posting and publishing and waiting for engagement, what you can do is promote your content in different communities.

Platforms like Quora and YouTube can be used for such promotions. It goes without saying that you shouldn't spam these communities. That will cause more damage than good. You should instead simply bring up your material with the group. Members of that group will remark and "like" your post if it interests them. It could be the initial "push" needed for every viral marketing effort.

Create the campaign in-line with your product/service 

Your followers are connected with you because of the products or services that you’re offering. Creating and posting the campaign outside your relatability can help you gain more followers, but the existing ones might lose interest in your work and page. 

Therefore, it is always clever to create a campaign that is in line with your brand and company. 


After learning all about What is Viral Marketing and various other components of the concept, let us give you some parting advice.

After experiencing any advertising success, the first thing to keep in mind is also that viral content doesn't stay indefinitely. It frequently starts off spreading for a few weeks, months, or years before dying out. It appears tacky or unauthentic to try to make a viral campaign continue to be successful. By doing that, you can do more harm than good to your brand.
Additionally, keep in mind that any success you experience arrives quickly. Is your organization ready? Do you have sufficient sales and customer service personnel to manage a rise in calls and inquiries? Can the output be increased to meet demand? Before starting a viral campaign, you must think out these details.

That’s it for the guide on what is viral marketing in digital marketing. Tell us which viral marketing campaign you remember and which was creative according to you.


1. What do you mean by viral marketing?

Viral marketing is part of a digital marketing strategy wherein the goal is to make the audience like and share the content. The ultimate goal is increased word-of-mouth marketing and social share.

2. What are the types of viral marketing?

There are two types of viral marketing, organic viral marketing, and amplified viral marketing. When a piece of content goes viral with no or little push from a marketer it is organic viral marketing and the other one is called amplified viral marketing.

3. Why is viral marketing important?

Viral marketing helps brands increase their reach and interact with audiences at an effective cost. And therefore, the concept of viral marketing is important.

4. What are the advantages of viral marketing?

The various advantages of viral marketing are cost-effective, non-invasive, high reach, high- lead generation, etc.

About the Author

 fingertips Fingertips

Fingertips is one of India's leading learning platforms, enabling aspirants - working professionals, and students to enhance competitive skills and thrive in their careers. We offer intensive training in areas such as Digital Marketing, Data Science, Business Intelligence, Artificial intelligence, and Machine Learning, among others.

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