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Discrete Dynamics in Nature and Society
Volume 2017, Article ID 9121032, 10 pages
Research Article

A Viral Product Diffusion Model to Forecast the Market Performance of Products

1School of Management, Harbin Institute of Technology, 13 Fa Yuan Street, Nan Gang District, Harbin 150001, China
2School of Economics and Management, Tongji University, 1500 Siping Road, Yang Pu District, Shanghai 200092, China

Correspondence should be addressed to Xiangbin Yan; nc.ude.tih@naybx

Received 17 November 2016; Revised 24 February 2017; Accepted 28 February 2017; Published 15 March 2017

Academic Editor: Ricardo López-Ruiz

Copyright © 2017 Ping Jiang et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


To investigate the diffusion of products in the market, this paper proposes a viral product diffusion model using an epidemiological approach. This model presents the process of product diffusion through the dynamics of human behaviors. Based on the stability theory of Ordinary Differential Equations, we demonstrate the conditions under which a product in the market persists or dies out eventually. Next, we use Google data to validate the model. Fitting results illustrate that the viral product diffusion model not only depicts the steady growth process of products, but also describes the whole diffusion process during which the products increase at the initial stage and then gradually decrease and sometimes even exhibit multiple peaks. This shows that the viral product diffusion model can be used to forecast the developing tendency of products in the market through early behavior of these products. Moreover, our model also provides useful insights on how to design effective marketing strategies via social contagions.