Jonah Peretti encourages the Mormon Strategy for Viral Media

Mormon missionary work is seen as a key viral media strategy

by Life-Engineering on January 25, 2011 · 3 comments

This is cool.

Mormonism got a social media shout out last Friday from Jonah Peretti, cofounder of the Huffington Post and founder of BuzzFeed.

He was speaking at the inaugural “Viral Media Meetup”, covering his history of viral success, and key strategies for viral marketers.

He began by explaining the differences in the old media model (below), where the media giants determined what we consumed.

He then explained the new media model (below), where what we consume is instead determined by our peers.
This proliferation is exacerbated by what he calls the BWN, or the “Bored at Work Network”.
He goes on to describe key strategies in creating viral media, including
  1. Viral Media Strategy
  2. The Mullet Strategy
  3. Big Seed Marketing Strategy
  4. The Maniac Strategy
  5. The Mormon Strategy

For this last one, he throws up this slide:

Then points out that while Judaism seems far more well known (or more generally liked), Mormonism is crushing it, whereas Judaism is showing flat growth (his chart only shows up till 2007, which is too bad, ’cause we were just taking off).

That’s right, Jonah Peretti’s strategy #5 for viral growth… Learn from the Mormons

His recap:
I’m happy that we’re so widely well known for our missionary work.  Evangelism, sharing the gospel, and bringing others unto Christ are core elements of the Lords true church.
It’s kinda funny that here is this social media pundit, at the first ever viral media meetup event, talking about Mormonism as one of 5 key growth strategies.
Still, he missed one critical element.  His talk (and his strategies), were on how to get a message to go viral (get people to talk about it).  But the growth of the Mormon church (check this out), requires far more than people just perpetuating a message.  It requires real commitment.
You don’t get people to give up drinking and smoking, commit them to pay 10% of their gross income in tithing, commit people to living the law of chastity, etc. by just passing along a message.  That message has to be true, it has to ring home to their very spirits.  The growth of the church speaks more about the truth of the message, then the mechanism for sharing it.
Still, our missionary work is inspirational, even to industry pundits who specialize in spreading messages.
To me, that’s cool.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Wyman August 16, 2010 at 11:23 PM

I ‘stumbled’ across your website, and like what I see. However, I don’t see any way to email a particular article I like to my email address, that way being able to share with my ‘networking’ group of selected friends or family. Please excuse my desktop weaknesses, but how can I do that- – or do I just copy and paste into a word document to save in one of my folders? You have lots of sharing links, except by good ol’ fashioned email. Thanks for your help.


2 Rusty Lindquist August 17, 2010 at 9:08 AM


Thanks for that, I’m glad you’ve found some stuff you like. And you know, you’re absolutely right, it’s funny, I totally thought I had that on there. I’ll add it today to make it easier for people to share by email.

In the meantime, you can just take the URL at the top (highlight it, then copy and paste it) into an email. You could also just select all the content then copy and paste it into the email itself. Most email tools will accept web-clippings like that pretty well.

Either way, thanks for the tip. I’ll get that added. And I hope to see you back.

P.S. Thanks in advance for sharing the content with others.



3 the hormone diet September 4, 2014 at 1:00 AM

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