Virus without a cure

Beeler, Amanda
April 2000
Advertising Age;4/17/2000, Vol. 71 Issue 17, p54
Trade Publication
This article examines the use of viral marketing, the Internet version of word-of-mouth marketing as of April 2000. The term is now being adopted by conference organizers and companies trying to turn the viral craze into a viable marketing industry. With incentives of free clothing, discounts and even cash for promoting products, marketers sometimes find themselves turning off the customers they expect to attract. Swedish furniture retailer Ikea recently removed an e-mail post card promotion from its San Francisco-area store's Web site after a handful of recipients equated it with spam. Ian Oxman, president of ChooseYourMail.com, said companies need to pay attention to how customers promote their products. Two types of companies tend to be most interested in viral techniques: early stage dot-coms that need to attract customers to get more venture capital and traditional companies launching on the Web, said Andy Raskin, CEO of Gazooba.


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