Marketing
Viral Marketing

Viral Marketing vs Buzz Marketing

January 24, 2023
4
min read
By
Uttam Gupta
Marketer
,
GrowthSchool
Reviewed by
Sindhu Biswal
Growth Head
,
Betterhalf
Contents

Viral and buzz marketing are both effective strategies for creating brand awareness, generating leads, and driving sales.

To many, they are synonymous. While they do have some similarities, they are far from the same.

Understanding the distinctions between viral and buzz marketing can help marketers design more effective campaigns and optimize their efforts to get the most out of their marketing budget.

So, before diving deeper into the elements of viral marketing campaigns, let's take a quick look at how it is different from buzz marketing.

What is Buzz Marketing?

Buzz marketing, also known as word-of-mouth marketing, is a strategy that encourages people to spread information about a product or service. It relies on influencers and brand advocates to share their opinions about a product or service with their networks.

This marketing tactic essentially relies on the trustworthiness of influencers and their relationships with people in their network. It's a strategy that has been used since before the internet, and it is still a viable marketing tactic today.

It's an effective way to reach new customers and drive sales, but it's difficult to measure and track its success.

The buzz around the time of the Paytm IPO launch is an excellent example of how to finance influencers on the internet hyped it up and led to its over-subscription despite the obviously weak fundamentals like lack of profitability. The price drastically slumped soon after the IPO and has not recovered even after a year.

Source - Finshots.in

What is Viral Marketing?

Viral marketing, on the other hand, is a strategy that uses creative content to spread awareness about a product or service using social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.

Unlike buzz marketing which relies on people talking about it, viral marketing creates content that encourages users to share it with their networks. This content can be anything from videos and GIFs to memes and blog posts.

Read the detailed guide on viral marketing to learn more.

Differences Between Viral Marketing and Buzz Marketing

Buzz marketing and viral marketing are similar in that they both focus on creating a buzz or excitement around a product or service through informal channels such as social media, online reviews, and personal recommendations.

However, there are some key differences between the two:

  Viral Marketing Buzz Marketing
Scope Focused on reaching a very large audience in a short period of time through the rapid sharing of content on social media and other platforms. Focused on reaching a smaller, targeted audience and generating sustained interest over time.
Control Often rely on the spontaneous sharing of content by users, and the success of the campaign is largely out of the control of the business. More carefully planned and executed by the business, with a greater degree of control over the message and distribution.
Objectives To reach a large audience quickly and drive brand awareness and sales. To generate word-of-mouth advertising and create a groundswell of support for the brand.
Content Specifically designed to be highly shareable, often featuring attention-grabbing headlines, compelling visuals, or emotional appeals. More focused on building a relationship with the audience and generating sustained interest over time.
Timing Viral marketing campaigns are often designed to have a short, intense burst of activity, with the goal of reaching as many people as possible in a short period of time. Buzz marketing campaigns may have a longer, more sustained timeline, with the goal of generating ongoing conversations and interest in the brand.
Measurement The success of a viral marketing campaign is often measured by the number of people who see or interact with the content. The success of a buzz marketing campaign may be more difficult to quantify, as it may be based on intangible factors such as the strength of the relationships that are formed with the audience.

When to Use Viral Marketing and Buzz Marketing?

Viral and buzz marketing are distinct marketing strategies with different goals and approaches, and the appropriate choice will depend on the specific objectives and target audience of the campaign.

Here are a few general guidelines for when to use viral marketing versus buzz marketing.

Use Viral Marketing to Reach a Large Audience Quickly

Viral marketing is focused on reaching a very large audience in a short period of time through the rapid sharing of content on social media and other platforms. If your primary goal is to reach a large audience quickly and drive brand awareness and sales, viral marketing may be the right choice.

Use Buzz Marketing for Sustained Interest

Buzz marketing is focused on generating sustained interest and word-of-mouth advertising over a longer period of time. If your primary goal is to build relationships with your target audience and generate ongoing conversations about your brand, buzz marketing may be the right choice.

Consider the Fit with Your Overall Marketing Strategy

Both viral marketing and buzz marketing can be powerful tools, but they may not be appropriate for all businesses or marketing campaigns. It's important to consider the fit with your overall marketing strategy and target audience when deciding which approach to use.

Conclusion

Viral and buzz marketing are two distinct marketing strategies with different goals, approaches, and target audiences. They both have their own unique benefits, but the right choice for your business will depend on your specific objectives and target audience.

When choosing between the two, consider the fit with your overall marketing strategy and target audience in order to select the most appropriate approach. Knowing when to use viral marketing and buzz marketing can help you create powerful, effective campaigns that achieve your goals and build relationships with your target audience. Good luck!

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