Virality is a hard topic to ignore when talking about any brand. Whether it is planned, schemed, or just coincidence, the benefits of this phenomenon can result really positive for you and your brand. At the end, there is no such thing as bad publicity, isn’t it? Maybe yes.
Nowadays, we are living in an age where viral marketing is hotter and important than ever; this is why we have considered to list some reasons that can explain what would happen if virality is not your thing for your brand.
- How lazy are you willing to be?
Success is a product of hard work over a long period of time. Any entrepreneur knows that the return on investment for the time spent and effort takes a long time to show up. Waiting to going viral can set the bar too high, too fast; when compared with overnight attention from millions, the amount of time it takes to raise brand awareness from traditional methods does not seem worth it anymore.
In the U.S., for example, where half of new businesses do not survive one year, viral marketing can take you one step closer to your start-up’s funeral.
- It is something about money and time
Some large corporations spend millions on marketing campaigns designed and thought to get the attention at an exponential rate. But, ask yourself: how big is your viral marketing budget?
Marty Zwilling, a small business adviser, talked in an article for the Business Insider about this annoying trend regarding the plan of many entrepreneurs to spread their brand. He mentioned that when he faces a business plan with little or maybe no budget for marketing, he gets the answer that they will be using viral marketing, which, for Marty, costs nothing. The founder explains that the product is so ‘buzz-worthy’ that usage will spread rapidly through word-of-mouth only, meaning people loving it and recommending it to their friends. For many small businesses, getting something to go viral is like winning the lottery. So, success is not a fact.
- The wrong target
A successful viral campaign could get you noticed by the right type of people, however, those people are not the only ones.
Know this meme “Alex from Target”? If you just do not know, Alex is an employee at a Texas location of retail giant Target, who also happens to look like a member of the next big boy band. After a seemingly innocent Tumblr photo of Alex gained hundreds of thousands of views overnight, Target recognized a fortunate opportunity and took advantage.
However, there are a lot of negative stories out there: bullying, the online leaking of Alex’s family’s personal information including Social Security numbers, bank accounts, and phone records, even death threats. Alex’s Target managers have developed security plans for his sake, in case of emergency.
Target may have the resources available to deal with a situation like this, but would you?
After all this, if you decide that virality’s still the goal for you and your business, just remember: be careful when asking for virality.