In 1984, Jay Conrad Levinson created the term “guerrilla marketing” to describe a strategy of implementing innovative tactics to create buzz. To Levinson, guerilla marketing campaigns were meant to be inexpensive, nontraditional, unexpected and memorable. When used by small businesses, these campaigns allow them to compete with larger companies that can afford more elaborate campaigns.
Many companies have used guerilla marketing with great success. Foursquare® raised their average check-ins from 250,000 to 350,000 by creating and inviting people to play a game of foursquare.
Keep reading to learn how you can build your business with fun, inexpensive guerilla marketing ideas for small business, coupled with small business swag.
Unconventional business cards
Add a twist to your business card by turning it into something that is remembered for a long time rather than filed away and forgotten. Pass out a business card box with two branded golf balls in it. Or watch your relationships flourish when you give out a business card that doubles as a seed packet.
Create a place to participate
Many of the best guerrilla marketing ideas for small business combine real-world fun with social media memories. Print a large graphic sticker for a wall or the ground and use it as a selfie backdrop. Include your logo and a hashtag and ask customers to snap and share. Labello lip balm (known as NIVEA® here in Canada) made a “kissing point” at a train station, creating a space where people could stop, smooch, and learn about a product that might interest them. Or ask customers to get creative through a selfie contest. Post the most creative selfies on your social feeds (with customer permission, of course) to attract attention.
Make them look twice
Large stickers also attract attention when used creatively. Salons could stick a giant comb on the sidewalk or in a window. Other stores could place floor stickers that look like the real thing—a pet store could put a sticker that looks like a bowl of dog food on the floor to attract pets and their owners. The possibilities are endless!
Make some art to spread the word
If you (or someone who know) has an artistic side, create art with sidewalk chalk in front of your building. Incorporate a bold design, directional cues and a message that invites them into your business. Once inside, you can pass out individual boxes of sidewalk chalk to remind them of your message.
Guerilla marketing lets customers discover you
Guerilla marketing tactics, coupled with small business swag, give you the chance to use your creative side to compete with businesses that have larger budgets. No matter what creative idea you choose, you’re sure to attract attention. Have fun!