With today’s competitive marketplace testing the limits of traditional marketing strategies, brands large and small are looking for new ways to cut through the noise, set themselves apart, and attract new customers.
For some, the answer lies in a relatively new style of marketing – brash, edgy, and irreverent, focused on taking the consumer by surprise and leveraging the power of spectacle to get people talking. It’s called guerrilla marketing, and while you may know the term, perhaps you’re not familiar with all that it entails.
So, let’s go over the basics.
First popularized in the 1980s, the term “guerrilla marketing” takes its name from the age-old strategy of guerrilla warfare – and while the goals may be worlds apart, the guerrilla warrior and guerrilla marketer are guided by similar principles. Both seek to exploit the environment, disturb routines, and use the element of surprise to achieve maximum bang for the buck.
How do these principles come into play when executing a marketing strategy? Guerrilla marketing…
– Typically doesn’t look like a traditional marketing campaign, and takes risks that traditional campaigns would not
– Uses unconventional techniques to reach consumers – or, may use conventional techniques, but in unconventional ways
– Disrupts the landscape with unusual ad placements, installations, or impromptu live interactions
– Plays to the crowd, engaging the public in urban spaces with dense pedestrian or vehicular traffic
Following these principles, guerrilla marketing encompasses a wide range of tactics that can deliver a cost-effective signal boost for your brand – from sidewalk chalk, stickers, and temporary graffiti, to street teams, flash mobs, online treasure hunts, and much more.
Now that we’ve covered the basics, here are a few points to keep in mind if you’re thinking of “going guerrilla” for your next marketing campaign…
Creativity and originality are the keys to truly memorable guerrilla marketing. It’s fine to look to past campaigns for inspiration, but following what others have done beat by beat is a bad call. Instead, let your imagination run wild, and do your own thing!
Because its effectiveness is tied to the element of surprise, a guerrilla marketing action is meant as a one-time, short-term tactic. No repeats, no do-overs – and don’t wear out your welcome.
Good Judgement is Key
Unexpected and opportunistic marketing stunts may draw attention, but the brazen, in-your-face style of guerrilla marketing does carry some risk of blow back, which must be weighed alongside the potential benefits. Use your best judgement when deciding where to draw the line.
The “War of the Worlds” Effect
And finally, this should go without saying, but you should absolutely steer clear of anything that could cause a panic, compromise public safety, or bring legal troubles!
Want to learn more about what “going guerrilla” can bring to your next marketing campaign? Contact us at Rosie’s Creative. We’ll work with you to put together a head-turning plan that’s built for your brand – and by combining guerrilla tactics with more conventional techniques, we’ll give you the tools to turn curious passersby into brand-loyal customers.