As entrepreneurs we all know about the many ways of marketing our products and services. According to the Word of Mouth Marketing Association (yes there is one) Social Networking has increased the number of many ways to reach possible customers.
Buzz Marketing is a viral marketing technique that attempts to make marketing appear to be a unique one to one interaction. If you’ve been in a chat room and someone seems to be pushing a product, it could very well be a representative of the company assuming a position of a fellow chatter. Blogs for a time had companies giving products or promotional services to extensive bloggers who would mention the product in their blog without seemingly selling it this proved very effective until consumers questioned the ethics of the practice.
If you own a Blackberry you may get IM’s(Instant Messages) that appears to be from someone you know promoting a product or service, many of those ‘people’ are IM Bots doing the campaign.
With Web 2.0, many web start-ups like Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, MySpace, and Digg have used buzz marketing by merging it with the social networks that they have developed.
Viral Marketing uses pre-existing social networks to get product sales. Twitter is an example that sees numerous campaigns offering get rich quick schemes, sounds familiar? The internet started out this way if you remember. Social networks (Web 2.0) are the effective new generation.
Community Marketing focuses on niche groups where people meet online with specific interests, e.g. chat rooms, user groups, meetup, fan clubs and forums. This is very effective and results in the participant in this type of campaign promoting the product or service outside the group as well.
Referral Programs offer incentives to people to refer their friends to buy the product or service. Obviously a happy customer is a much better referral than trying to get a new client. Just like anything abuse runs rampant and marketers pay for you to refer ‘friends’ (or more than likely acquaintances) from your Twitter or Facebook, etc. database.
Product Seeding places the right product in the right hands at the right time providing products or services to select influential individuals. Urban legend goes that Blackberry gave numerous devices to top executives for a 3 month test then tried to take the ‘crackberry’ back. The execs told 2 friends and so on and of course wouldn’t return the device. The rest is history.
Influencer Marketing identifies key people and opinion leaders who are likely to talk about the product and influence others to buy the product.
Evangelical Marketing takes the approach that if you find people who truly believe in your product you can enlist them to volunteer to promote the usefulness or your product