Guerrilla Marketing: Ballin’ on a Budget for Entrepreneurs


I’m Alex Berman and you’re watching SELLING
BREAKDOWNS. Some tactics are so much a part of business
that you’d think they were just a logical thing that came about naturally. And there’s no better example of this than
guerilla marketing, where you try and make a lot of impact with a very limited budget. But, we actually have one man to thank for
this; Jay Conrad Levinson. Today, we’re going to look at his book “Guerrilla
Marketing”, released in 1984, and see the influence it’s had. We’ll show you the various methods so you
can see what would best suit your business and your budget. Jay Conrad Levinson was born in 1933 in Detroit
and he studied psychology which gave him groundwork to work in advertising. He learned the trade in London and then came
back to US, to run further campaigns and to teach at Berkeley. He worked on some of the most famous campaigns
of all time, such as the Marlboro Man, Tony the Tiger and the Jolly Green Giant, all of
which are now a part of cultural history. But his greatest achievement is his book Guerrilla
Marketing, which sold 21 million copies and was translated into over 60 languages. The core concept is that if you are a small
business up against major corporations, like the jungle guerilla groups taking on a huge
army, then you need to find a new way to fight. And your best weapon is surprise. Levinson showed that in his experience, a
campaign that meets consumers in an unexpected way can have a much larger impact and help
generate a real buzz through word of mouth. It’s also important to be very direct. The aim is to generate a big sales boost and
quickly, before the buzz dies down. For giant companies, the metrics involved
can be quite vague, looking at things like “interactions” or “awareness” because
they can afford to play the long game, creating slow growth. Not for guerillas, for them it’s all about
sales. So, although you need to be innovative and
original, you also need a crystal clear message which pushes sales immediately. Okay, so the question is: how do you do this? Guerilla marketing has a number of specific
tactics. First, Ambient marketing. This is where you put advertising in a place
or a format that is highly unusual. There are some great ones like this example
from Gold’s Gym. There’s a lot of inspiration you can take
from street artists like Banksy here; people really notice things that play with the environment. Next, there’s stealth. As the name might suggest, there’s risk
here. You’re trying to market without seeming
like you’re marketing but if people realise this, there can be a negative backlash. Product placement used to do this but most
of us are wise to it now so it’s hard to do it subtly. A great example, albeit a very cynical one,
was when Blackberry gave attractive women their phones and they sat in bars. When guys asked them out, they handed over
their Blackberry so the guy would type in his number and experience using the device. You can see that this example could have easily
gone wrong and Blackberry could have been labelled sexist or exploitative or something,
but they got away with it. Viral marketing is really a subset of guerilla
marketing too, but we have a full video on Viral Marketing and it’s creator Tim Draper
– I’ll leave a link in the description. Ambush marketing is when you try to create
a connection between your brand and a bigger event, so that you can piggyback on their
promotion. You obviously need to be very careful about
the legal aspect of ambush marketing. You will see this every time there is a major
sports event like the Olympics or the World Cup. In the London 2012 olympics, the official
sponsors got temporary ownership of words and phrases such as “gold” and “London”
and “games”. One wine seller, Oddbins, found a way around
the rules by creating ads that said: “We can’t mention the event. We can’t mention the city. We can’t even mention the year. At least they can’t stop us telling you
about this: Rococco Rose £17.” It’s smart. They managed to link themselves to the Olympics
and branded themselves as an underdog to root for, exactly what many people love about sports. There are plenty of other tactics but hopefully
this will give you an idea of what you can achieve with a bit of outside the box thinking. Wanna learn more about business theory and
history? Be sure to like and subscribe to be notified
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