The impact of social media on viral campaigns has become apparent this summer, with the recently announced success of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, raising more than $200 million to aid in ALS research. The research led to the discovery of three different genes that can be linked to the disease, an unparalleled step forward in the race to find a cure.

Much of the success of the campaign can be attributed to the videos posted on Facebook and Instagram showing participants pouring large buckets of ice water over their heads. In a recent interview, D'Amore-McKim School of Business Assistant Professor Yakov Bart deconstructed the social media phenomenon, discussing the role social media has in campaigning, the risk of viral overexposure and how it will change the future.

“I believe that some of the most underestimated social marketing tools at the moment are the capabilities offered by Snapchat. While at first blush brands may find it unreasonable to allocate any part of their marketing budgets on sending almost-instantaneously-disappearing communications to consumers, they will soon realize that Snapchat is probably the closest any social media platform has come so far to imitating real-time conversations among consumers,” said Bart.

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