The term “guerrilla marketing” refers to less-popular low-cost marketing and advertising activities that make a huge impact. With the marketing tools below, your startup can potentially stretch a limited marketing budget and reach many more people than you might expect.
These techniques are especially important in the context of startups because most ventures lack larger marketing budgets in the beginning. Given that the earlier you raise awareness of your brand, the better the positive multiplier effects will be, it’s important to look into tried-and-tested guerrilla marketing methods as well as other less-used methods.
Here are some low-cost guerrilla marketing tools that you may not have considered:
1.) Give away high-quality branded lanyards
If your target market consists of people who need to wear IDs, such as students or white-collar workers, then giving away quality polyester lanyards with your logo can be a good way to share your brand within that demographic. If the lanyard has an appealing design as well as features for holding keys, access, cards, smartphones, or other daily essentials, people may prefer to use them rather than the regular lanyards they were supplied by their school or office. This potentially gives you countless brand impressions within a very defined target audience over several years.
2.) A witty social media presence
People generally dislike being marketed to on social media. People are on social media to connect with friends and family. Generally speaking, they don’t want to be marketed to on social media, even if they implicitly accept or tolerate it most of the time. However, a witty or humorous brand is bound to be remembered and develop a genuine following. While this approach may not always work for all brands, injecting some warmth into your social media presence can go a long way into both extending your reach and making your brand far memorable than its competitors.
3.) SEO and content marketing
The internet is the biggest equalizer there is for startups hoping to compete with larger businesses. However, this is only true if people can find your brand online — a problem that SEO and content marketing directly addresses. Provided that you work with experts who know their stuff, focusing on these areas can give you a great return on a relatively low investment. A strategy that focuses on on-page and off-page SEO can potentially be the most cost-efficient marketing tool available to your business in terms of going toe-to-toe with larger competitors.
4.) Sticker tagging
Provided the design is distinct, a sticker can carry an extremely powerful emotional punch and provide countless brand impressions for years, if not decades. Given that stickers only cost a few cents each to produce, this makes them great for giveaways and freebies, as well as for “sticker bombing” in areas where there may be high foot-traffic.
5.) Email automation
The humble email is often overlooked as an effective way to cultivate brands and ramp up sales. Thanks to the availability of free or low-cost email automation tools, it takes relatively little effort to reach out to thousands of potential customers in a meaningful way.
As with your social media presence, having a warm, human approach in your emails (and perhaps a quirky signature) is a great way to get recognized and stand out from the spam messages your customers get every day.
6.) Photo-sharing on social media
By now, it’s obvious that Instagram and Pinterest can increase interest and drive sales for many brands. However, you don’t need to have a particularly “IG-worthy” product line to benefit from these apps. Pictures can be incredibly powerful, and one good image can be of more value than a 10,000-word blog post. And you don’t need the most expensive camera either. Chances are the one on your smartphone will do just fine.
By sharing the day-to-day happenings in your startup and sharing posts by satisfied customers, you can tell a compelling story that gets people interested. By showing off a human side, you can get a stronger emotional response and a deeper bond between your startup and those you’re reaching out to.
Guerrilla marketing works best when you use it to show your heart and passion for your startup. People tend to respond positively to genuine passion. As a small startup, this passion is communicated through guerrilla marketing far more believably than if it was attempted by a larger competitor. Of course, it helps that the methods we described above are either free or cost very little money, which leaves your startup with more resources to experiment or do other things it does well.
What other guerrilla marketing methods have you tried? Tell us!