The simplest way to explain viral marketing is to think in terms of mainstream networking. Your contacts know about you and your site and you hope to that they pass that information on to someone else.
But hoping is not a good way to approach web marketing, you need to be pro-active in promotion. Viral marketing is well known and widely spread marketing, but on the Internet. Your key marketing messages, information about your products and services, and your latest company news are passed along by other companies. As this process gathers pace there is an unstoppable snowballing effect which means your audience simply grows and grows – your reputation as a company that is going places growing in tandem. Marketing phenomenon that facilitates and encourages people to pass along a marketing message. Viral marketing depends on a high pass-along rate from person to person. If a large percentage of recipients forward something to a large number of friends, the overall growth snowballs very quickly. The value of viral marketing is that the message can be received by exponential numbers of potential customers. For example, if I forward your message to 20 friends and each of those 20 friends forwards the message to 20 other friends, the message could spread very quickly.
By implementing viral marketing strategies, you provide an incentive for web site visitors to carry a sales message. This incentive is usually a free “carrier” tool for that marketing message or a means by which it is easier for people to spread the word about your products and services. The idea is not to push your visitors into delivering your sales message to others, but as a side effect of them gaining benefit from a utility or service that you offer. A good example of viral marketing is many of the free email services available on the Internet. The messages that you send from some these free services invariably contain promotion for the company providing the service. A very successful strategy is the development of articles and tutorials such as these.
If somebody is lucky enough, a webmaster may place an article on a high traffic web site and this will create some traffic to your web site. Using this strategy, you are relying on the honesty of the user to acknowledge the origin of the tool.