Wednesday, 22 January 2014

How to Make Your Report Viral

Can you do so too? And how? To answer this question, you have to understand what viral reports are and what makes the viral reports viral.
A viral report is an interesting mix between a computer and mind virus. Like a computer virus they are spread from computer to computer, taking up disk storage. Unlike computer viruses they are not using flaws in PC software. Instead, like mind viruses, they are cheerfully spread around by volunteering humans, because the ideas in these reports are mind viruses that find home in people minds.

Don't get scared by the term "mind viruses." There are tons of good symbiotic mind viruses that help those who carry them. In fact, the language you speak is a swarm of mind viruses originally passed to you by your parents and then complemented by your friends, family, TV, radio, books, whatever source of information you consume.

To spread around, a mind virus must have two things:
* An anchor: the reason why people want to get it in the first place and why people want to keep it.

* A carrier: the reason why people want to spread it.
To be successful, your viral report must have both these components. There is no way around it, you just have to provide both. So, what are they?
Let's start with the anchor. What can you use as an anchor? The generic answer is value. However, there are different kinds of value. When dealing with reports, people normally expect educational value. Ideally, it means that you should provide an "aha moment" for your readers, when they realize something new that makes total sense to them, and that tells them what they can do to reach their goals.

Keep in mind, educational value is not the only kind. For example, viral videos usually rely on entertainment value, personal videos and photos provide social connection value, etc. However, reports normally use educational value as the baseline. If you can stack more value on top of that (entertainment, social status), so much the better.

The carrier is a little trickier. In some cases, you may stack up so much value that it will also become a carrier. People will share your report just because it's that good. That's what Rich Schefren did with his famous "Internet Business Manifesto." However, that's extremely hard.

If you are just starting in viral marketing, do what everybody else does: allow the distributors of your reports to put their affiliate links in it. Money is a great carrier that not many things can beat.


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