Turion's Marketing Strategy Series: The Guerilla Marketing

Marketing and Advertising Guide Resources
Guerilla Marketing: Wild success sometimes isn't so far-fetched. What's the catch?
If you have never heard of guerilla marketing, think of some unique marketing campaigns that made everyone talk about it. The ones that also live in people's memories for a long time. The ones that are unexpected.
Let me give you an example. Remember the "clown in the sewer" movie? It (2017). To promote the release of the movie, red balloons were tied to sewer grates, creating an unsettling atmosphere. Some people liked it, some people don't, but at least no one was hurt. The interesting thing was that everyone was talking about it on social media.
Another iconic example is a campaign created by Frontline Flea and Tick Spray. A large poster of an itching dog was put on a mall's floor. While it may look normal, everything changed when people started walking on top of the poster normally. All the people walking on the poster turned into "fleas" that are crawling on the big itching dog. People on higher floors of the mall saw it and it made their day.
Image from Google
The essences incorporated into the two guerilla marketing examples: word-of-mouth (social buzz), unexpectedness, creativity, perfect delivery of a message.
So, how do you make your own guerilla marketing campaign? Well, although we can't give you specific plans for your guerilla marketing because everyone's scenario is different, but we can help you get there a lot easier with this guide.
Always remember: You need to track and measure your results. Find a good way to do so!
Guerilla marketing stems from "Guerilla Warfare", which means a form of unexpected, irregular form of warfare against a larger group of enemies, often surprising the larger enemies with a series of well-planned and coordinated actions. If you understand and remember this, it will make it easier for you to develop a good guerilla marketing plan.

Stage 1: Information

  • Your Goal: This is the place to start. What do you want to achieve? Be SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Timed) with your goals. (SMART is a goal-setting approach that helps us really narrow down our goal.)
  • Your Audience: Go beyond demographics. Understand their online habits, preferred social media platforms, what content they engage with, and even their sense of humor. This will help tailor your tactics for maximum impact.
  • Competitive Landscape: Conduct a competitive analysis, but with a guerrilla twist. Identify not just their marketing strategies, but also any potential gaps or areas where you can surprise them (and their audience). Sometimes, you might find some inspiration from competitors too.
  • Data tracking: There are many types of data you can track. What you need to track will depend on your goal. People often think of the shiny guerilla marketing buzz that they can create, but forget about tracking and measuring results. Even the wildest guerilla tactics need to have solid proof (numbers) that it works.
  • Needed Permission: While the element of surprise is key, always be mindful of legalities and potential disruption. In some cases, seeking permission (or at least informing local authorities) can prevent problems and garner support. You don't want your guerilla marketing campaign to backfire on you.

Stage 2: Brainstorming

  • Think Like Your Audience: Put yourself in their shoes. What kind of surprise or interaction would genuinely grab their attention and leave a lasting impression?
  • Brainstorming Techniques and Key Points: Utilize techniques like mind mapping, role-playing, or even "worst idea wins" scenarios to spark unexpected and creative ideas. You can try to lay them all out and slowly eliminate unsuitable ones, until you get the best few left.
  • Location/Platform: Consider the potential impact of location- or platform-based tactics. Could you utilize a local landmark or high-traffic social media platform for a unique stunt? If you can manage, it should be where you audience gathers.
  • Partnerships: Think beyond traditional marketing channels. Partner with local businesses, artists, or even community organizations for a unique collaboration that leverages their reach and audience. It can potentially maximize your reach.

Stage 3: Testing

  • Pilot Test: Before unleashing your full campaign, conduct a small-scale pilot test of your chosen tactic. This allows you to refine your approach and identify any potential logistical challenges.
  • Iterate: After your test runs, jot down anything that you might need to fix or change. You shouldn't aim for the perfect marketing campaign, but you should minimize the chances of issues happening. We suggest 2 or more test runs, but no more than 5, just so you don't end up getting caught in unconsciously trying to make the perfect marketing campaign. It might end up causing you to get nothing done.

Stage 4: Deploy and Spread the Fire

  • Deployment and Execution: If your test runs are good enough, all there is left is executing the campaign as you planned.
  • Social Media Amplification: Create a dedicated campaign hashtag and encourage audience participation. Promote user-generated content and behind-the-scenes glimpses to build excitement. Sometimes, you can omit glimpses and teasers to maximize the element of surprise.
  • Influencer Outreach: Partner with micro-influencers in your niche who have a strong connection with your target audience. If you don't have a budget for large influencers, go for smaller ones, and offer them a unique experience or early access to your product/service in exchange for promotion.

Stage 5: Debrief and Documentation

  • Track Key Metrics: Follower/subscriber/customer growth, traffic, new unique visitors, and conversion rate are some good metrics for most marketing campaigns. Depending on your goal, you should find the right metrics to track.
  • Analyze and Adapt: Debrief your team after the campaign. Identify what worked well, what could be improved, and how you can adapt the tactics for future campaigns.
  • Documentation: Document your successful campaign with case studies and showcase the results. This will not only serve as a learning tool for yourself/your team but also potential inspiration for future endeavors.
That's it for our basic guide on guerilla marketing! If you love to read more about our marketing guides, feel free to subscribe to our newsletter! We will send guides directly to your inbox.