Viral marketing is a technique that exploits social networks in order to promote a product. Essentially, viral marketing relies on the fact that people will share interesting or useful information with friends, colleagues, and relatives. This creates a kind of “epidemic” where the information spreads throughout the population very rapidly. Companies tend to make use of viral marketing by offering free services (e.g., e-mail) or free content, such as funny video clips or interesting stories. Passing on a video clip or story also passes on the company’s message. Viral marketing offers a cheap and highly effective form of advertising since it tends to target only those people likely to be interested in the product.
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