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Viral marketing
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Viral marketing, viral advertising, or marketing buzz are buzzwords referring to marketing techniques
that use pre-existing social networks and other technologies to produce increases inbrand awareness or to
achieve other marketing objectives (such as product sales) through self-replicating viral processes,
analogous to the spread of viruses or computer viruses (cf. internet memes and memetics). It can be
delivered by word of mouth or enhanced by the network effects of the Internet and mobile networks.[1] Viral
marketing may take the form of video clips, interactiveFlash games, advergames, ebooks, brandable
software, images, text messages, email messages, or web pages. The most common utilized transmission
vehicles for viral messages include: pass-along based, incentive based, trendy based, and undercover
based. However, the creative nature of viral marketing enables "endless amount of potential forms and
vehicles the messages can utilize for transmission"


including mobile devices.

The ultimate goal of marketers interested in creating successful viral marketing programs is to create viral
messages that appeal to individuals with high social networking potential (SNP) and that have a high
probability of being presented and spread by these individuals and their competitors in their
communications with others in a short period of time.
The term "VRL marketing" has also been used pejoratively to refer to stealth marketing campaignsthe
unscrupulous use of astroturfing online combined with undermarket advertising[clarification needed] in shopping
centers to create the impression of spontaneous word of mouth enthusiasm.[3]
1 History
2 Functioning
3 Notable examples
4 Methods
5 Social networking growth
6 See also

7 References

The emergence of "viral marketing," as an approach to sales, has been tied to the popularization of the
notion that ideas spread like viruses. The field that developed around this notion, memetics, peaked in
popularity in the 1990s.[4] As this then began to influence marketing gurus, it took on a life of its own in that
new context.
There is debate on the origination and the popularization of the specific term viral marketing, though some
of the earliest uses of the current term are attributed to the Harvard Business Schoolgraduate Tim
Draper and faculty member Jeffrey Rayport. The term was later popularized by Rayport in the 1996 Fast
Company article "The Virus of Marketing," [5] and Tim Draper and Steve Jurvetson of the venture capital
firm Draper Fisher Jurvetson in 1997 to describe Hotmail's practice of appending advertising to outgoing
mail from their users.[6]
Among the Second to write about viral marketing on the Internet was the media critic Doug Rushkoff.[7] The
assumption is that if such an advertisement reaches a "susceptible" user, that user becomes "infected"
(i.e., accepts the idea) and shares the idea with others "infecting them," in the viral analogy's terms. As long
as each infected user shares the idea with more than one susceptible user on average (i.e., the basic
reproductive rate is greater than onethe standard in epidemiology for qualifying something as
an epidemic), the number of infected users grows according to an exponential curve. Of course, the
marketing campaign may be successful even if the message spreads more slowly, if this user-to-user
sharing is sustained by other forms of marketing communications, such as public relations or advertising.
[citation needed]

Bob Gerstley was among the first to write about algorithms designed to identify people with high Social
Networking Potential.[8] Gerstley employed SNP algorithms in quantitative marketing research. In 2004, the
concept of the alpha user was coined to indicate that it had now become possible to identify the focal
members of any viral campaign, the "hubs" who were most influential. Alpha users could be targeted for
advertising purposes most accurately in mobile phone networks, as mobile phones are so personal. [citation

According to marketing professors Andreas Kaplan and Michael Haenlein,[9] to make viral marketing work,
three basic criteria must be met, i.e., giving the right message to the right messengers in the right

Messenger: Three specific types of messengers are required to

ensure the transformation of an ordinary message into a viral one:
market mavens, social hubs, and salespeople. Market mavens are

individuals who are continuously on the pulse of things

(information specialists); they are usually among the first to get
exposed to the message and who transmit it to their immediate
social network. Social hubs are people with an exceptionally large
number of social connections; they often know hundreds of
different people and have the ability to serve as connectors or
bridges between different subcultures. Salespeople might be
needed who receive the message from the market maven, amplify
it by making it more relevant and persuasive, and then transmit it
to the social hub for further distribution. Market mavens may not
be particularly convincing in transmitting the information.

Message: Only messages that are both memorable and

sufficiently interesting to be passed on to others have the potential
to spur a viral marketing phenomenon. Making a message more
memorable and interesting or simply more infectious, is often not a
matter of major changes but minor adjustments.


Environment: The environment is crucial in the rise of successful

viral marketing small changes in the environment lead to huge
results, and people are much more sensitive to environment. The
timing and context of the campaign launch must be right.

Whereas Kaplan, Haenlein and others reduce the role of marketers to crafting the initial viral message and
seeding it, futurist and sales and marketing analyst Marc Feldman, who conducted IMT Strategies
landmark viral marketing study in 2001,[10] carves a different role for marketers which pushes the art of viral
marketing much closer to science.[11]
Feldman points out that when marketers take a disciplined approach to viral marketing by targeting,
measuring and continually optimizing their campaigns based on campaign metrics, viral marketing
transforms the customer into a new sales channel, a new lead generation channel and a new awareness
generating channel. Feldman's innovative reconceptualization of viral marketers went a long way towards
making "viral marketing" a strategy that sales and marketing directors at Fortune 500 and Global 1000
companies could legitimately invest in. This disciplined approach to Viral Marketing that Feldman first
carved out, pointed the way towards measuring the ROI of every viral marketing campaign and thus
making a real business case for investing in viral marketing. The customer-as-a-sales-channel approach to
viral marketing went on to become the foundation for an explosion of technology enabled viral marketing
services offered online, offline and in blended hybrid approaches.



This article may contain excessive, poor or irrelevant examples. Please improve the article by
adding more descriptive text and removing less pertinent examples. See Wikipedia's guide to
writing better articles for further suggestions. (November 2011)
The Ponzi scheme and related investment pyramid schemes are early examples of viral marketing. In each
round, investors are paid interest from the principal deposits of later investors. Early investors
enthusiastically recruit their friends, generating exponential growth until the pool of available investors is
tapped out and the scheme collapses.[12]
Early in its existence, the television show Mystery Science Theater 3000 had limited distribution. The
producers encouraged viewers to make copies of the show on video tapes and give them to friends in order
to expand viewership and increase demand for the fledgling Comedy Central network. During this period
the closing credits included the words "Keep circulating the tapes!" [13]
Between 1996/1997, Hotmail was one of the first internet businesss to become extremely successful
utilizing viral marketing techniques by inserting the tagline Get your free e-mail at Hotmail at the bottom of
every e-mail sent out by its users. Hotmail was able to sign up 12 million users in 18 months [14]. At the time,
this was historically the fastest growth of any user based media company[15]. By the time Hotmail reached
66 million users, the company was establishing 270,000 new accounts each day [16].
In 2000, described TiVo's unpublicized gambit of giving free systems to web-savvy enthusiasts
to create "viral" word of mouth, pointing out that a viral campaign differs from a publicity stunt.[17]
Both the second and third games in the Halo series were preceded with viral marketing in the form of
an alternate reality game called I Love Bees for the second game, and Iris for the third game.[citation needed]
Burger King has used several marketing campaigns. Its The Subservient Chicken campaign, running from
2004 until 2007, was an example of viral or word-of-mouth marketing. [18] Burger King's launched its
"Whopper Sacrifice" campaign in 2009.[citation needed]
The Blendtec viral video series Will It Blend? debuted in 2006. In the show, Tom Dickson, Blendtec founder
and CEO, attempts to blend various unusual items in order to show off the power of his blender. Will it
Blend? has been nominated for the 2007 YouTube award for Best Series, winner of .Net Magazine's 2007
Viral Video campaign of the year and winner of the Bronze level Clio Awardfor Viral Video in 2008.[19] In
2010, Blendtec claimed the top spot on the AdAge list of "Top 10 Viral Ads of All Time." [20] The Will It Blend
page on YouTube currently shows nearly 200 million video views.[21]
Cadbury's Dairy Milk 2007 Gorilla advertising campaign was heavily popularised
on YouTube and Facebook.[citation needed]
The 2007 concept album Year Zero by Nine Inch Nails employed a viral marketing campaign, including the
band leaving USB drives at concerts during NIN's 2007 European Tour. This was followed up with
an alternate reality game using series of interlinked websites revealing clues and information about
the dystopian future in which the album is set.[citation needed]

In 2007, World Wrestling Entertainment promoted the return of Chris Jericho with a viral marketing
campaign using 15-second cryptic binary code videos. The videos contained hidden messages and biblical
links related to Jericho, although speculation existed throughout WWE fans over whom the campaign
targeted.[22][23] The text "Save Us" and "2nd Coming" were most prominent in the videos. The campaign
spread throughout the internet with numerous websites, though no longer operational, featuring hidden
messages and biblical links to further hint at Jericho's return. [24][25]
In 2007, Portuguese football club Sporting Portugal integrated a viral feature in their campaign for season
seats. In their website, a video required the user to input his name and phone number before playback
started, which then featured the coach Paulo Bento and the players waiting at the locker room while he
makes a phone call to the user telling him that they just can't start the season until the user buys his
season ticket.[26] Flawless video and phone call synchronization and the fact that it was a totally new
experience for the user led to nearly 200,000 pageviews phone calls in less than 24 hours. [citation needed]
The Big Word Project, launched in 2008, aimed to redefine the Oxford English Dictionary by allowing
people to submit their website as the definition of their chosen word. The project, created to fund two
Masters students' educations, attracted the attention of bloggers worldwide, and was featured on Daring
Fireball and Wired Magazine.[27]
The marketing campaign for the 2008 film The Dark Knight combined both online and real-life elements to
make it resemble an alternate reality game. Techniques included mass gatherings ofJoker fans, scavenger
hunts around the world, detailed and intricate websites that let fans actually participate in "voting" for
political offices in Gotham City, hidden phone numbers and websites in the queue lines of The Dark Knight
roller coasters at Six Flags Great America and Six Flags Great Adventure, and even a Gotham News
Network that has links to other Gotham pages such as Gotham Rail, a Gotham travel agency, and political
candidate's pages. The movie also markets heavily off of word of mouth from the thousands of Batman
fans.[citation needed]
In 2009 American rapper Eminem heavily promoted his new album Relapse with the fictional rehabilitation
center Popsomp Hills (pronounced: Pop some pills) by shooting the music video for the song 3 a.m.
(Eminem song) in the building of the rehabilitation center. He mentions Popsomp Hills in various tracks on
Relapse and his newest album Recovery. He also mocks some other rehabilitation centers like the Brighton
Rehabilitation Center in the song 'Underground' with the line 'Two weeks in Brighton, I ain't enlightened'.
After the Eminem campaign, the rehabilitation center had many more visits.
Between December 2009 and March 2010 a series of seven videos were posted to YouTube under the
name "iamamiwhoami" leading to speculation that they were a marketing campaign for a musician. In
March 2010, an anonymous package was sent to an MTV journalist claiming to contain a code which if
cracked would give the identity of the artist.[28] The seventh video, entitled 'y', appears to feature the
Swedish singer Jonna Lee.[29][30][31][32]

On July 14, 2010, Old Spice launched the fastest growing online viral video campaign ever, garnering 6.7
million views after 24 hours, ballooning over 23 million views after 36 hours. [33] Old Spice's agency created
a bathroom set in Portland, OR and had their TV commercial star, Isaiah Mustafa, reply to 186 online
comments and questions from websites like Twitter, Facebook, Reddit, Digg,Youtube and others. The
campaign ran for 3 days.[34]
Viral marketing has also been used to bring about flash mobs.


Customer participation & polling services

Industry-specific organization contributions

Internet search engines & blogs

Mobile smartphone integration

Multiple forms of print and direct marketing

Outbound/inbound call center services

Target marketing Web services

Search engine optimization (SEO) web development

Social media interconnectivity

Television & radio

VMS target marketing is based on three important principles:


Social profile gathering


Proximity market analysis


Real-time key word density analysis

By applying these three important disciplines to an advertising model, a VMS company is able to match a
client with their targeted customers at a cost effective advantage.
The Internet makes it possible for a campaign to go viral very fast. However, the Internet and in particular
social media technologies do not make a brand viral; they just enable people to tell other people faster. The
Internet can, so to speak, make a brand famous overnight.


networking growth

Two thirds of the worlds Internet population now visit a social network or blog site weekly.[35] 220+ million
people visit the top 25 social networks each month. [36] Facebook has 500+ million active users.[37] Time
spent visiting Social media sites now exceeds time spent emailing.[38] 52% of people who find news online
forward it on through social networks, email, or posts. [39] 59% of adults polled state that they use their cell
phone to remain connected with their social network.[40]



Guerrilla marketing

Internet marketing

Marketing buzz

Seeding agency

The 7th Chamber

The Viral Factory


Viral video


^ Howard, Theresa (2005-06-23). "USAToday: Viral advertising

spreads through marketing plans". USA Today. Retrieved 2010-0527. June 23, 2005, 2005




^ "Wired: Commentary: Sock Puppets Keep It Shill on YouTube".

2007-05-08. May 8, 2007


^ Burman, J. T. (2012). The misunderstanding of memes: Biography of

an unscientific object, 19761999. Perspectives on Science, 20(1),
75-104. [1]

Johnson's rule
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

This article has multiple issues. Please help improve it or discuss these
issues on the talk page.
This article is an orphan, as no other articles link to it.

(February 2009)

In operations research Johnson's rule is a method of scheduling jobs in two work centers. Its primary
objective is to find an optimal sequence of jobs to reduce makespan (the total amount of time it takes to
complete all jobs). It also reduces the number of idle time between the two work centers. Results are not
always optimal, especially for a small group of jobs.
The technique requires several preconditions:

The time for each job must be constant.

Job times must be mutually exclusive of the job sequence.

All jobs must go through first work center before going through the second work center.

There must be no job priorities.

Johnson's rule is as follows:

1. List the jobs and their times at each work center.
2. Select the job with the shortest activity time. If that activity time is for the first work center, then
schedule the job first. If that activity time is for the second work center then schedule the job last.
Break ties arbitrarily.
3. Eliminate the shortest job from further consideration.
4. Repeat steps 2 and 3, working towards the center of the job schedule until all jobs have been

Given significant idle time at the second work center (from waiting for the job to be finished at the first work
center), job splitting may be used.


1 Example
2 References
3 Further reading
4 References

Each of five jobs needs to go through work center A and B. Find the optimum sequence of jobs using
Johnson's rule.

Job times (hours)


Work center A

Work center B











1. The smallest time is located in Job B (1.50 hours). Since the time is in Work Center B, schedule this job
last. Eliminate Job B from further consideration.

2. The next smallest time is located in Job C (2.20 hours). Since the time is in Work Center A, schedule this
job first. Eliminate Job C from further consideration.

3. The next smallest time after that is located in Job E (2.80 hours). Since the time is in Work Center B,
schedule this job last. Eliminate Job E from further consideration.

4. The next smallest time after is located in Job A (3.20 hours). Since the time is in Work Center A,
schedule this job first. Eliminate Job A from further consideration.

5. The only job left to consider is Job D.


"Heuristic Scheduling Systems: With Applications to Production Systems and ... - Thomas Morton,
David W. Pentico - Google Ksiki". 2001-07-20. Retrieved 2012-09-26.



S. M. Johnson, Optimal Two- and Three-Stage Production with Setup Times Included, Naval
Research Quarterly, (March 1954)

William J Stevenson, Operations Management 9th Edition, McGraw-Hill/Irwin, 2007



Operations research

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