This paragraph, deep down in a Fast Company article questioning the fundamental reasonings behind The Tipping Point summed up the argument nicely :
Perhaps the problem with viral marketing is that the disease metaphor is misleading. Watts thinks trends are more like forest fires: There are thousands a year, but only a few become roaring monsters. That’s because in those rare situations, the landscape was ripe: sparse rain, dry woods, badly equipped fire departments. If these conditions exist, any old match will do. “And nobody,” Watts says wryly, “will go around talking about the exceptional properties of the spark that started the fire.”
So successful campaigns are just pot luck then? Explain that to the customer you’ve just sold your ideas on viral internet marketing campaigns.
Read the Full Article.