Don’t you just love an interesting – and provocative – quote? I think Jeff is spot on – but the challenge is to create – and maintain – a product or service customers can’t help talking about.
I noticed a great example of a company attempting to harness this today – a not quite “zero budget marketing” example… but a very bloody cheap one! The example comes from Freelancer.com, who are apparently planning to launch and Australian site. Their way to launch it? Run a competition, encouraging their existing 1.8 million members to promote the site FOR them.
The entire prize pool is tiny for a business of that size – $25,000. If they were to spend that on an online advertising campaign that would get them VERY little. But get 1.8 million eager freelancers around the world on the job, and I’d argue their $25k investment could net them 5, 10 or even 50 times the value.
It’s hard to get engagement – they’re actually asking for quite a bit of creativity and effort. But if only ONE HUNDRED people (which gives me such a small % of 1.8million that it’s not worth mentioning!) put in a decent effort, it will be money very well spent and provide a massive RETURN ON INVESTMENT.
So, not quite zero budget, but a good idea here to mirror if you have an existing community of engaged customers or members.