The pursuit of cultural impact in the age of virality : measuring long-term brand impact

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Mixter, Emily
Lukens, Alex
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Thesis (B.?)
Honors College
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Virality used to be a term rarely used outside the medical field, but today it has become a commonly used phrase in the digital marketing industry to describe content that gains a rapid amount of attention within a short period of time. How does this attention accumulate so rapidly; is it mere chance or is there a strategy behind it? Through a historical overview of the development of digital marketing, and the analysis of three viral campaigns, I will attempt to show that virality is achieved through a variety of creative methods, but is ultimately not controlled by advertisers alone. However, there is also a more effective way for digital marketing professionals to evaluate the effectiveness of their campaigns: their long term cultural impact.