Virtual News (En)

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

What a buzz e-day !

By Cédric Rainotte

Imported directly from Anglo-Saxon countries, viral marketing or “buzz marketing” as our friends across the Channel say, are increasingly rubbing shoulders with traditional marketing.

Amazing laboratory of creativity, land of fabricated rumours, degree zero of advertising… It’s easy to get lost in the land of viral marketing!

You are probably familiar with the “Whassup” ads for Budweiser, Sprite’s disappearing goblin or the hilarious Kiss Cool playlets, not to mention the clip of a singing, dancing alien on Gloria Gaynor’s hit.

Indeed, behind a somewhat offputting name hides a simple concept: instead of seducing the consumer by forcing a message, we’re going to nudge him towards being active and do the advertising himself by giving him the irresistible desire to share his discovery… Brilliant yet simple: when the consumer becomes a prescriber, he also becomes an ambassador of the brand!
Contaminated or contaminating…

A few years ago this phenomenon was still unknown to the larger public, but now companies use it more and more. Yet such campaign can sometimes flirt with the limits of legality or even cross the line without a second thought in all impunity. In Belgium people in the profession have created a “task force” within the Internet Advertising Bureau to supervise the situation and avoid any major slip-up that could harm the profession.

You must admit that successful viral marketing campaigns make the average Netsurfer happy. Creative writers have found a concept that carries weight, shows originality, creativity and often don’t hesitate to use wacky humour or even transgress certain taboos to stimulate our curiosity.

Once these elements come together, it’s up to us to spread the good word, exchange the best commercials, posters and screensavers…. There is no lack of format and it works!

Suggest, evoke, desire: these are the key words of viral marketing.

About the author

E-Businessman from the start, Cédric Rainotte came through the Internet decade surfing on new technologies. He founded the companies Cromozone and Barnes & Richardson where he is Chief Creative Officer.

English Translation by Virtual Words


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