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7 Viral Ways for Exapanded Online Reach

By Charles Hopkins Published 06/14/2007 | Marketing

What would happen if one of your friends tells about your newest blog to her five friends and they, in turn, tell their friends and it goes on like this? Pretty soon you will have all the traffic you need for a comfortable income from your new-found writing careers. Is it possible to to achieve this kind of success using the virality of the social web, or does it sound like a pyramid scheme?

The emergence of social web provides opportunities for viral marketing that never existed before. Face to face talk or talk over the phone has its limitations in reaching your audience. The Web 1.0 offered forums for a limited viral marketing opportunity. The social web has opened up avenues manyfolds expanded online reach. This article describes seven techniques for using the social web to achieve virality.

1. Before jumping to social websites to launch your viral adventure, make your site social web friendly. Provide a link on your site for users to invite their friends. When someone joins your site through an invitation, reward points to the inviter. Announce a contest on your site and reward the top inviter with e-books or a t-shirt with your site logo.

2. Spend sometime at Digg. This is a community based news popularity web site. If your blog article hits the front page of Digg, you will get thousands of visitors and some of them will eventually become your regulars. Study the types of articles that end up on the front page of Digg. Write your blog articles targeted to Digg users.

3. MySpace is the ultimate social website because of its sheer size in terms of visitors. If you have lots of friends who have their MySpace pages, create a niche network community in MySpace with common interests. Post teasers of your interesting blog articles in your MySpace page with links to your full article. Ask your friends to write comments on your blog postings.

4. Take a look at Delicious. Google Delicious to get the url because it is not a dot-com domain. It is a social bookmarking site to store your bookmarks online. You should build a network of friends at this site and study their bookmarkings to assess the type of articles they prefer to bookmark. Tailor your blog articles to mimic the article style your network appreciates.

5. Visit a site called Squidoo. At Squidoo you create "lenses" (a Web page) about any topic. You can create as many lenses as you want and you can embed external links in your lenses. Squidoo lenses also have a good search engine credibility. So, your sites will get some good external in-bound links for free.

6. LinkedIn is an online community of experienced professionals. Create your account at LinkedIn and network with professionals in your fields. Offer some free services for other professionals in your network and solicit their recommendations. All recommendations appear in your profile. LinkedIn provides great opportunity for someone to find your business or services.

7. YourElevatorPitch provides a free online spot to announce your business and services. User rates your ad pitches. This site also allows you to link back to your site.

Other sites worth exploring for viral opportunities are Flickr and YouTube. Both the sides accept multimedia (photos for Flickr and videos for YouTube) contents. These sites are good for establishing your brand by regular posting of theme oriented humorous contents.