Besides the viral coefficient, viral marketing also has a second important component, the viral cycle time. This metric tells you how long it takes a customer to invite another customer. That may take hours, days, or even months. Your viral cycle time begins when a user first discovers your service and starts all over when the invitation has been sent. The shorter the time, the better. Viral cycle time has a tremendous impact on enabling growth for your service and can help you get the early traction you are looking for. YouTube, for example, does an outstanding job at having a low viral cycle time. When you watch a video, you can share it with your friends and family. Therefore, people can quickly spread the word, which made YouTube the most successful video platform.
One caveat – having a short viral cycle time alone will not make the cut. A temporary peak in users might seem significant, but when your user retention is little, your joy will be short-lived. With that being said, the overall experience you provide will make people continue using your service.