The new Apple store opened in Nashville on
Saturday and a line snaked around the inside of the mall. All of this with no
advertising but word-of-mouth and

A new Apple store opened on Saturday in Nashville and the line snaked from one end of the mall to the other, and doubled back on itself.

It’s a pretty common story with the opening of these stores. However, what struck me as I looked at the line is the way the crowd was attracted. Apple didn’t advertise in any local media. What little it did was by e-mail. The rest was word-of-mouth.

Viral marketing is becoming a more refined way of marketing and Apple is one among the many who have found the way to make it work.

Traditional media won’t die from this, but they will change. Revenues from advertising are moving to different media. It’s a cautionary tale for those who rely exclusively on traditional media. Niche audiences can be reached more effectively and efficiently with viral marketing. It delivers results.

The proliferation of media segments audiences making this kind of marketing more productive. It’s a changing environment that advertisers will have to consider as they spend to deliver messages. It’s got great potential and it also carries great risk. It’s one more feature of a mediated society.

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