ME video viral marketing bollocks??


Either I completely misread this, or Marketing Experiments - recently acquired by Marketing Sherpa - by got it completely wrong.

In a study into video as a viral marketing technique, they:

- spent $9600 creating 28 videos for YouTube, Google Video, etc
- which over 60 days received 324,190 views
- which results in 4,162 clickthroughs
- which converted at 1.49% to newsletter subscribers

The article then goes on to laud video viral marketing as a success, and that it beats PPC hands down in terms of acquisition cost.

After all, the acquisition costs for new subscribers via the videos was $0.

But, hang on, what about the $9600 cost of the videos?

Maybe I'm being dumb here, but by my calculator, 1.49% of 4,162 is 62.

Which is $10k to get 62 newsletter subscribers.

I can't see any reason how this can be lauded as a success.



The real value will be in how the viral curve continues moving forward, it's likely there will be a residual traffic and how this pans out over 12 or 24 month could well make it a massive success. Sometimes virals can take months to really catch hold (find their wau onto into the right places) YouTube is designed perfectly to exploit this.


Marketing Sherpa was recently aquired by Marketing Experiments (not the other way around). Beyond that, I would have to agree with you. They estimate a cpa of $20.14 using PPC. If you factor in the cost of producing the videos (and I have no idea why you wouldn't) they ended up with a cpa of $154.84.

They did say, though, that October saw more views than the previous 2 months combined, so maybe they'll have something better to report down the line.

My bad on the error - would

My bad on the error - would be nice if I could edit the original post. :)

I also agree that viral can take time, and this isn't properly factored in.

What the study shows that syndication of content is basically a free vector - but instead of being implicit on that, they simply ignored their content generation costs in the first place.

What got my goat is that this is supposed to be for marketers by marketers, yet they made such an obvious omission as development costs.

No.. you're bang right!

I totally agree you have a point and the original article should take this production cost into consideration, not to mention the seeding process would carry an overhead. However they don't appear to take into consideration the life-time viral benefits, which for a company who just acquired Marketing Sherpa seems a little bit amaturish.

To say I'm a little dissapointed in the quality of this piece compared to the standard I've learned to expect from Marketing Sherpa would be an understatement.

I expanded a little about this post and the Marketing Experiments post over at

Marketing without

Marketing without Mathematics..... great catch Brian Turner!

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