The whole idea behind Unleashing an Ideavirus is to stop marketing at people and turn those ideas into epidemic viruses that will have others marketing for you.
In the old days we sold a product by interruption marketing. Running ad, interrupting people with impersonal, irrelevant ads hoping that they would buy something.
What is an ideavirus? I’m so glad you asked. It’s a big idea that takes off across a target audience that takes on a life of its own. For example, everyone watching the same TV show or reading the same book. It creates a buzz around that medium which creates an ideavirus. Almost like starting a rumor, good or bad you know it’s going to spread.
While reading the book, Unleashing an Ideavirus, by Seth Godin I also started watching the movie The Social Network and it dawned on me the parallel between an ideavirus and Facebook; both started out as an idea that one person acted on that went viral.
Traditional marketing promotes a product or service, but the currency of the future is ideas. An ideavirus begins with a sneezer. He is simply the person who promotes the idea, starts the rumor or creates the buzz in hive.
There are 2 types of sneezer promiscuous and powerful. A promiscuous sneezer is a member of a hive that can be counted on to sell you something usually for financial gain.
A powerful sneezer already has the attention of the hive and uses the power of their influence to promote ideas that go viral. Money is not a problem because when they speak (sneeze) people listen.
The idea behind Facebook’s lightening fast success worked because the ideavirus concept was added in from the start. Wouldn’t we all like even one of our ideas to take off like that? Well, here are 5 ways to unleash and ideavirus of your own just like Facebook:
1. Go full viral. This is the holy grail of idea marketing. What’s the concept? The more you use it, the more you market it. Using the product is the same as marketing it. Like Facebook; every time you use it; you’re marketing it. The whole idea behind it was pure genius. Thinking about it makes you want to dig out those old notes and take another look at some of those ideas you forgot about.
2. Pay off the Promiscuous. The idea is simple: if your recommendation is going to help my business, I’m happy to pay you to recommend me. You have to give them a reason to want to share it.
3. Make it smooth for the Powerful. The easiest way to do this is to make it easy for a powerful sneezer to share with their hive. So that once they are exposed they are hooked. Again, look how easy Facebook has made it to invite friends to join and find friends of friends. This is a prime example of an ideavirus and viral marketing at it’s best.
4. Go digital. If you see a movie or read a book that you like post a review, like or share it. It has the potential of reaching millions of people with the click of a button. It has much greater velocity.
5. If you really want to unleash an ideavirus create some mystery around it and let the members promote it for your. Case in point; Facebook. You have to be a member to sign in and find your friends. It increases your power as professional sneezers.
There’s a lot more I could say about unleashing your very own ideavirus. but you can get the book and read it yourself. In the meantime, go dig out some of those old notes and start putting your ideas into actions. Who knows you may even release an ideavirus of your own.