The spread of a message quickly across the Internet, largely by “word-of mouth”. It mimics a virus because of the speed at which is transferred and the number of people that it reaches. Viral Marketing is an effective form of marketing that yields a good ROI if successful. Buzzwords for viral marketing are: viral advertising or marketing buzz. The reason for viral marketing is to achieve the awareness of the product and to, in the best case scenario, sell the product. Even though it is known which company is the sponsor of the ad, it does not mean that it is paying for the distribution of the ad. The way it works is that the ads are posted on the companies website or on sites like Youtube. Than these ads are circulated via various ways. An entire ad can be copied and sent via emails, blogs, text messages, images, web pages etc. The nature of this kind of marketing is that they consist of endless forms of messages that can be utilized for transmission, including mobile phones. Numerous times have you received messages from a retail store saying about some discounts or similar things. That would be viral marketing.
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.