Nowadays brings with it a rapid development of information technology, and therefore new, faster and more efficient ways to enable marketers to reach a deeper awareness of their consumers. This is an era of intense competition, everyone is fighting for a better position, but the result is that consumers are becoming tired of the content they are surrounded by on a daily basis. Traditional marketing methods are no longer sufficient to ensure a competitive advantage in the market. How effectively to combine creativity, appropriateness and new technologies, and to approach consumers involving them in the process of marketing communication? It is a response that viral marketing may provide, viral marketing as a modern strategy that encourages people to transfer messages to the others. It works similarly to viruses; contamination spreads high speed, of course through digital media, in the most positive sense. People have a need to disseminate information, to their virtual friends, about their preferences toward certain brands, so it only takes one click to transfer information and thus begins a process that automatically occurs later. Many companies have realized that this methods of promoting their products and services can have a strong impact on creating positive people`s attitudes and build a bright picture of them in the minds of potential and loyal consumers.
Mobile technologies and the Internet has become an integral part of life of the modern man, and it has become unthinkable even to function well without them. Of course, marketing experts are aware of it and as a result they are using online advertising methods to create the brand awareness in a more efficient manner than traditional advertising (Fagerstrom and Ghinea, 2010).
Viral marketing can be understand as “any strategy that encourages individuals to pass on a marketing message to others, creating the potential for exponential growth in the message`s exposure and influence”. It presents a “fashionable idea that propagates through a section of the population, teaching and changing and influencing everyone it touches” (Godin, 2006: 14). Compared with traditional advertising methods, viral marketing cost lower, has higher credibility, faster diffusion, and better targeting consumers (Bampo et al., 2008; Dobele, Toleman and Baverland, 2005). Traditional Marketing allows consumers to passively consume messages and their content, but viral marketing relies on people who are willing to take an active role in spreading a message. The Internet removes almost all communication barriers, distance and cultural differences between people, as a result, sharing information is more open than it used to be (Leskovec, 2007).
Viral marketing (also known as word-of-mouth marketing) presents a new tool for marketing communications and promotion whereby companies seed products with select groups of consumers, and they hope that they will spread word-of-mouth about these products, and as a consequence to increase awareness and sales (Godes and Mayzlin, 2009).
However, some experts see viral marketing as more of an art than a science, and this perspective comes from the realization that viral marketing outcomes are influenced by many factors that company cannot always control. Even if these factors can create a great deal of uncertainty, it does not mean that marketers cannot make informed decisions to maximize the possibility of success (Kalyanam et al., 2007).
A good question would be how to begin with this process of viral marketing? The answer is usually referred to the “seeding strategy.” This strategy involves determining how many initial consumers (“seeds”) do company need to disseminate a viral message and what types of consumers to choose as “seeds”. These consumers are responsible for the initial dissemination of the viral message to other consumers, choosing the right targets as seeds can have a significant influence on later stages of the viral marketing process (Bampo et al., 2008; Watts and Peretti, 2007).
Video sharing on the Internet has become increasingly popular among Internet users. Some authors have believed that emotions generated by video clips can play an important role in why messages go viral. They think that videos that have gone viral have some level of emotional resonance with its viewers. However, the role of emotions in viral messages has not yet been fully explored. (Phelps, 2004; Dobele et al., 2007).