Owning a startup is a lot of work. You have a good idea and
start to build upon it and grow by achieving funding from
investors and developing your team. Once you have everything
all set and you’re ready to launch, the next stop is to focus
on growing your brand and investing in marketing, one of the
biggest challenges many startups face. Even in the beginning
stages, you likely have limited funds and a small following,
and you may not even know what brand image you hope to
Digital marketing has become essential for businesses in this
digital age for startups and large corporations. Viral
marketing has been one of the go-to strategies that many
companies try to accomplish to market their products or
services. It has an incredible return on investment as it
usually requires very little money to start, but it does
require the right strategy.
Going viral isn’t something easily done, and while it can
produce incredible results, it can be challenging to get
traction on virality. There are a few tips and strategies your
startup can benefit from if your goal is to get your startup
to go viral. Read on for the benefits of viral marketing and
tips and tricks to make your startup go viral.
What is Viral Marketing?
Viral marketing is a marketing strategy that businesses can
implement to reach as many people as possible through word of
mouth and social media at an exponential rate. There are many
ways to achieve viral marketing, including videos, memes,
Instagram content, Twitter posts, email campaigns, and more.
The main goal of viral marketing is to share content that is
highly likely that your target audience can relate to and is
likely to share, like, or forward the message. In turn, others
begin to share the media, and your marketing campaign has
successfully gone viral.
Benefits of Viral Marketing for Startups
Implementing viral marketing in your marketing strategy can
substantially benefit your startup. With preparation,
creativity, and a little luck, you can benefit from a viral
startup in these ways.
– One of the most significant benefits is the return on
investment. As an early-stage startup, funds are typically
low, and you want to make the most of your finances through
smart marketing strategies. Any funding usually goes into
content creation, and the rest is left up to relying on people
to spread the message. Viral marketing campaigns can reach a
wide audience at an insignificant cost compared to traditional
marketing efforts, where you would spend on clicks, ads, or
marketing campaigns to reach your existing audience.
Gain Valuable Consumer Insights
– Viral marketing can provide valuable insights into what
people think about your brand and what you have to offer. You
can learn about behaviors and what they expect from your
startup. These insights can help you develop marketing
materials that stay in line with what insights you gained
during your viral marketing campaign and continue to stay
consistent as you grow your startup.
Expanded Audience Reach
– A viral marketing campaign can reach thousands, if not
millions, of potential customers globally. It can happen
quickly, within a matter of days, when your startup can reach
your target audience and beyond. It can spread across multiple
platforms and bring valuable exposure to your startup.
The Downside of Going Viral
Although the benefits are substantial, viral marketing can
still be a gamble, and your marketing efforts can just as
easily fall flat. There are a few downsides to giving viral
marketing a fair shot.
Difficult to Predict
– Viral marketing can be unreliable and unpredictable. You can
invest thousands into a marketing campaign with a goal to go
viral, and if none of them work, your investment may have been
a waste and could have been better spent elsewhere.
Viral marketing is best managed in partnership with a
traditional marketing campaign. Grow your startup through
conventional means such as blog posts, advertisements, and
social media campaigns to reach your target audience. If any
of your sources go viral, you can take that virality, build on
the growth, and adjust your marketing strategies based on what
Challenging Without a Base Following
– Going viral with your startup is challenging without a good
base following or community behind you. Viral marketing
requires people to spread the word about your brand, idea, and
product, and if you don’t have a lot of followers, it’s
difficult to attain.
Before you begin a viral marketing campaign, start with
building a following through simple social media campaigns,
focusing on traditional ads, and creating excitement behind
your project by posting and following other people in a
similar niche or with similar interests on social media. Even
simple, well-thought-out social media posts with great
messages could go viral.
Tips to Make Your Startup Go Viral
While going viral may seem random, there is something behind a
startup that does the research and puts in the work to make it
happen. Some techniques and elements you can use in your
social media and marketing campaigns can help your startup go
Know Your Audience
– An engaged audience is more likely to share, so you want to
be sure you understand your target audience before you create
your marketing campaign. Your viral marketing campaign needs
to consider your audience enough so that they share it with
the people closest to them.
In the early stages of developing your overall marketing
strategy, you should determine your target audience. You’ll
want to think about whom your startup appeals to most. Think
about their values and what they would be passionate about.
You essentially will create an ideal customer profile for your
startup to help you make important decisions regarding your
Analyze Current Social Media Trends
– Content consumption is at an all-time high. More people now,
more than ever, are creating content and hoping to go viral.
Many content creators analyze current trends to relate to
topics people are currently interested in. With trends, you’ll
need to identify if your startup could create content that
could hop on that trend while staying true to your brand
message. You’ll want to balance out trending content along
with original content.
Decide on a Clear Brand Message
– Your startup’s brand image should be one of the first major
decisions in developing your marketing campaign. You want to
stay relevant to your industry and send a message that
resonates with your target audience. Anything abstract or
random might not be received well and may end up failing
Try Multiple Platforms and Techniques
– Don’t limit yourself to one platform or a single type of
marketing. There are quite a few social media platforms you
can create content and reshape to fit each platform’s style.
Be sure to continue to include SEO, text, and email campaigns
in your marketing strategy to drive traffic to your website
and your social media websites, giving you a higher chance of
– Many people who scroll through content are looking for a
good laugh. If you can connect humor to your content that can
relate to your brand image, you can create content that will
make your target audience laugh and share in hopes that the
people closest to them will get a good laugh too.
Create Emotional Impacts
– Using an ad campaign that elicits an emotional response can
be a compelling motivator to share. Touch on feel-good and
sweet stories focused on the good in the world. People who
connect and relate to the content on a deep emotional level
are more likely to share it with their friends and family.
Know Your Limits
– Going viral can be a double edge sword. It can bring
unprecedented growth, and if you aren’t prepared to manage
that growth, it can reflect poorly on your startup’s image.
Beyond preparing for rapid growth, you need to be prepared to
deal with the negativity that will inevitably come with a
Getting your startup to go viral through creative marketing
can be an incredible way to build brand awareness and grab the
attention of your target audience to help it grow. There’s no
clear-cut way to make your startup go viral; if one of your
ads goes viral, take advantage of the growth potential and
build on what’s working.
Viral marketing should never be your only marketing strategy.
Let viral marketing flow naturally through a great social
media strategy while implementing some common tips. You’ll
have a higher chance of going viral and bringing much-deserved
attention to your startup.