A study by Sharpe Partners, an interactive marketing agency, revealed that 89% of adult Internet users in America share content with others via e-mail. This is excellent news for those companies who use self-propelling word-of-mouse” e-mail techniques to sell their products.
The study generated some interesting results regarding the type of content that is most often forwarded, as well. The most popular content is humorous material.
The second most popular category is news, followed by healthcare and medical information, religious and spiritual material, games, business and personal finance information and sports/hobbies… in that order. So it is easy to see that humor is the best content for your viral e-mail campaign.
Cartoons, jokes and funny video clips are among the things that can be added to an e-mail to ensure that it will go viral. People will want to pass along something that makes them laugh.
They are a lot more likely to hit the forward button and send your email to their friends and relatives if it is an “advertainment” rather than an advertisement.
Not long ago, about 35 million people got an e-mail containing a picture taken in Disneyland. It took a minute to see it but there was Donald Duck lying prone in front of the famous Cinderella Castle. The title of the picture was “Bird Flu has hit Disneyland”. It was a viral e-mail advertising Disneyland and used the edgy strategy of making light of what’s serious… and it works.
I’d guess that most people who own a computer have seen that picture… and thus the advertisement for Disneyland. The bird flu epidemic is newsworthy and has the potential to attract an enormous amount of attention to any brand that might, for whatever reason, associate itself with it.
Remember that people are much more likely to share a joke or a funny picture than anything else so you would be well-advised to include humor in your e-mail campaign.