Apparently, the phrase “guerrilla marketing” was established by a man named Jay Conrad Levinson in 1984. The expression describes unconventional, cost-effective marketing strategies that small businesses anywhere could use to get their company noticed. The idea is to use non-traditional advertising activities to connect your brand with your target audience at the “street level,” and disrupt the pedestrian life enough to grab people’s attention.
If you’re interested in trying out a new campaign, why not try one of these inexpensive guerrilla marketing strategies?
- Graffiti isn’t limited to what is sprayed—it refers to any writing (or image) on a public space. But be careful—there are risks when what you are posting is not explicitly allowed by the owner of the space. There is also temporary graffiti that can be done safely and legally (at least in theory), but be careful!
- Project a video onto a large outdoor flat space. All you’ll need is a great projector and a wall big enough to grab some attention. You will, of course, need darkness in a busy space.
- Stickers can make a big and very cool “street” level statement. Even simple stickers of the logo can get a lot of impact. Put them up all over the place and make sure to put them in the places your target audience will be. Additionally, you can put great stickers on all sorts of surfaces—garbage cans, temporary walls, abated buildings, etc.
- Flash mobs can work when you deploy an unassuming group of street performers that begin singing, dancing, or acting in a busy space and it feels totally unscripted. The performance can shock the unassuming crowd and, of course, they’ll quickly realize what’s going on. In an unexpected space, an open mall space area, for example, one person suddenly stands on her chair and begins singing a song. The key to a successful flash mob is the perception of spontaneity in a potentially busy space.
- Leverage and create your own public space that encourages audiences to participate. For example, the train station could be a great location to take a selfie as you say goodbye to a loved one and you could brand a specific spot on the ground!
There are risks, and there are rewards to inexpensive guerrilla marketing strategies! You have lots of freedom when you create a brand experience that is totally out of the box. The possibilities are as limitless as your creativity. Of course, there are no guarantees in this media space. But when your campaign works it can deliver incredible brand exposure well beyond what you couldn’t get any other way. Remember that this media space will take a lot of time to develop, great creativity, and has many unforeseen production elements that you won’t be able to predict, but the return on investment (ROI) can be dramatic.