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Get users to talk about you without them doing so

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What if you could get your users to talk about you without them actually doing so?

That's what Hotmail did in 1996 when they added the tagline “Get Your Free Email at Hotmail,” at the end of each existing user’s outgoing mail.

When a Hotmail user sent out an email on his or her account, the recipient could click on the tagline link, which would direct them to a page where they could set up their own account. Within 6 month, the email service userbase skyrocketed to 1 million users.

Nowadays, this tactic is still commonly used by websites builders, email marketing services and basically any tools that allows to embed content. It usually takes the form of a "powered by" link on a sticky widget or in the footer of a website.