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Two hearts in three-quarter time: How to waltz the social media/viral marketing dance

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Author Info

  • Kaplan, Andreas M.
  • Haenlein, Michael
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    Abstract

    The concept of viral marketing has been discussed in the literature for over 15 years, since Jeffrey Rayport first introduced the term in 1996. However, the more widespread use of social media has recently pushed this idea to a whole new level. We provide insight into the relationship between social media and viral marketing, and illustrate the six steps executives should take in order to dance the social media/viral marketing waltz. We define viral marketing as electronic word-of-mouth whereby some form of marketing message related to a company, brand, or product is transmitted in an exponentially growing way--often through the use of social media applications. We consider the three conditions that need to be fulfilled to create a viral marketing epidemic (i.e., giving the right message to the right messengers in the right environment) and present four different groups of social media viral marketing campaigns (nightmares, strokes-of-luck, homemade issues, and triumphs). We conclude with five points of caution that managers should heed when trying to launch their own viral marketing campaign.

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    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/B6W45-52667D5-1/2/9b8539cc318142aa6fcaf8983023cd07
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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Business Horizons.

    Volume (Year): 54 (2011)
    Issue (Month): 3 (May)
    Pages: 253-263

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:bushor:v:54:y:2011:i:3:p:253-263

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    Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/bushor

    Related research

    Keywords: Web 2.0 User-generated content Social media Viral marketing Word-of-mouth;

    References

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    Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
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    1. Kaplan, Andreas M. & Haenlein, Michael, 2010. "Users of the world, unite! The challenges and opportunities of Social Media," Business Horizons, Elsevier, vol. 53(1), pages 59-68, January.
    2. Chrysanthos Dellarocas, 2006. "Strategic Manipulation of Internet Opinion Forums: Implications for Consumers and Firms," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 52(10), pages 1577-1593, October.
    3. Dellarocas, Chrysanthos, 2003. "The Digitization of Word-of-mouth: Promise and Challenges of Online Feedback Mechanisms," Working papers 4296-03, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sloan School of Management.
    4. David Godes & Dina Mayzlin, 2004. "Using Online Conversations to Study Word-of-Mouth Communication," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 23(4), pages 545-560, June.
    5. Dobele, Angela & Lindgreen, Adam & Beverland, Michael & Vanhamme, Joelle & van Wijk, Robert, 2007. "Why pass on viral messages? Because they connect emotionally," Business Horizons, Elsevier, vol. 50(4), pages 291-304.
    6. Chrysanthos Dellarocas, 2003. "The Digitization of Word of Mouth: Promise and Challenges of Online Feedback Mechanisms," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 49(10), pages 1407-1424, October.
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    Cited by:
    1. Sadaf Bashir & Uwe Matzat & Bert Sadowski, 2014. "The Adoption of Information and Communication Technologies in the Design Sector and their impact on Firm Performance: Evidence from the Dutch Design Sector," Working Papers 14-01, Eindhoven Center for Innovation Studies, revised Feb 2014.
    2. Kaplan, Andreas M., 2012. "If you love something, let it go mobile: Mobile marketing and mobile social media 4x4," Business Horizons, Elsevier, vol. 55(2), pages 129-139.
    3. Mangold, W. Glynn & Smith, Katherine Taken, 2012. "Selling to Millennials with online reviews," Business Horizons, Elsevier, vol. 55(2), pages 141-153.
    4. Kiljae Lee & Won-Yong Oh & Namhyeok Kim, 2013. "Social Media for Socially Responsible Firms: Analysis of Fortune 500’s Twitter Profiles and their CSR/CSIR Ratings," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 118(4), pages 791-806, December.

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