As a busy entrepreneur, you’re probably limited in time and money, and looking for quick and easy ways to market your business. Enter guerilla marketing.
What’s guerilla marketing?
Guerilla marketing is a tried and true advertising strategy that uses unconventional, creative, and low-cost marketing tactics that gets results. It was officially introduced in the mid-80s as a way to stand out from the noise of mass media because TV commercials and magazines were so costly. Has much changed?
8 Guerilla Marketing Strategies to Grab Your Customer’s Attention
Establish a pop-up store as a fun and innovative way to get fast exposure. Ask a local business if you can set it up in front of or in their store, or purchase booth space at a popular local event. Bring only your best, favorite products (not your entire inventory), and think about including items that customers can’t normally get at your location to create FOMO, fear of missing out. Use social media to drive traffic and create a buzz, and include a contest with valued prizes – from your store, of course.
Create a geocache in front of your retail location. What’s geocaching? It’s basically a treasure hunt. A cache can be anything from a tube with a note to a large box with trinkets inside that people have left for you to find. Creating a cache is easy once you download the app. You will have to pay a membership fee of about $30 a year, but it could be a worthwhile investment, especially if you get a lot of traffic. There are more than 3 million active geocaches worldwide. How can you make yours stand out?
Along the same lines, geo-fencing marketing uses your phone’s GPS to give exclusive content based on your location and ad campaigns are meant to be hyper-local. It’s incredibly affordable, effective, and easy to do. If you were an auto dealer, you could set up a geofence aimed at pinging buyers at a competing dealership. Or, if you were a musician, you could create geofences around different tour stops along your route. The more locally targeted your message, the better, especially if you’re focusing on capturing a local audience.
- Library Business Cards
Go to your local library and head to the section that’s all about your business, or find books you think your audience would read. Put your business cards or special offers inside the books, in a chapter that makes the best sense. If you don’t want to use a card, create a ‘how-to’ piece with a strong call to action. Some readers may think it’s a message from the Universe. Librarians, if they find out, may frown on your ingenuity. Airline magazines work magic too.
- Sidewalk Chalk Art
Sidewalk art as a guerilla marketing strategy? Why not? Graphics in front of your store almost always gets attention, even if you aren’t a budding Rembrandt. Own a café? Use sidewalk chalk to draw a picture of a coffee cup with a short message – and don’t be afraid to infuse humor. “Have a latte to do today? Coffee helps!” Or what about a joke a day? Even writing your brand’s name on the sidewalk will create interest from people walking by. Maybe they don’t stop in today, but they’ll remember you. Joke books, inspirational sayings? What’s your style?
Stickers are great for branding and they’re extremely cost effective. We’re talking pennies, well, maybe dimes. The more stickers you distribute, the more people know about you. Print a bunch up with your logo and tagline, and give them away for free. Put them in with people’s orders before shipping them. Hand them out on the street and at events. Give them away to post everywhere (that’s legal); car windows, public bulletin boards, your kids’ school notebooks, your laptop case, anywhere people can see them. Entrepreneurial stick-to-itiveness at its best!
Want to put your business info even more places? Order brightly colored or customized post-its with your message. Strategically stick them, within reason, when you’re out and about. Negotiate with your local pizza shop to put them on boxes for delivery. Post-its are reasonably priced, easily removable, and you can hire kids to help with the task. If you’re promoting a local event or want to drive traffic, post-its could work especially well. Cable companies have used post-its and pizza promotions to create brand awareness for the college crowd, and they work.
Micro-influencers are active on social media have a large and dedicated following. And, they’re worth seeking out if they share your audience. Example: Forever 21 partnered with Kristal Heredia, a plus-sized fashionista with over 17k Instagram followers. Chances are, they give her clothes (and maybe money too), as long as she posts cool pictures of herself in a Forever 21 wardrobe, tagging them in the process. Try your luck and build trust and loyalty with micro-influencers. Do plenty of research first to be sure there’s a fit and check to see if there’s a charge.
Now, go to the drawing board and start brainstorming on how to add guerilla marketing to your promotions strategy. Get inspired by some other campaigns and then mix and match, or create your own. Just don’t shut down any cities in the process.
Let me know what worked for you. I’d love to hear your feedback!