We recently published a great post over at Bizzebee.com (another site I help run) listing some Facebook marketing tips for local businesses to use. These tips focused on some Guerrilla marketing ideas and techniques that you can use to help raise the awareness of small businesses. Well that post got me thinking about some online Guerrilla marketing ideas that you can use to help promote your website and ultimately attract more traffic.
Before we get to that though, I’m sure some of you may be asking the same thing…
What Is Guerrilla Marketing?
Well, to quote Wikipedia’s Guerrilla marketing page;
The concept of guerrilla marketing was invented as an unconventional system of promotions that relies on time, energy and imagination rather than a big marketing budget. Typically, guerrilla marketing campaigns are unexpected and unconventional, potentially interactive, and consumers are targeted in unexpected places.
Guerrilla marketing is essentially cheap (or even free) ways of marketing your business/product to people in creative and effective ways.
Many people assume that the only way to promote a business online is by using tried and tested methods, such as;
- Paid advertising (i.e. website banner ads, AdSense ads, etc.)
- Social media (i.e. promoting your business/services on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, etc.)
- Guest blogging (i.e. getting your site mentioned on other sites in your niche)
There is nothing wrong with these methods, in fact when used properly they can be very effective, however, as the saying goes “there is more than one way to skin a cat.” Guerrilla marketing simply offers you alternative ways to reach new people simply by thinking outside the box. Let’s take a look at some.
8 Online Guerrilla Marketing Ideas
OK, technically this first one isn’t “online”, though it can be a good way to help promote your online business.
There are many businesses that have both an online and offline presence, yet the two seem very separate. T-Shirts that have your domain name printed on them is an extremely simple yet effective way of marketing your website. You and your employees can wear them throughout the working day and people will notice it. Remember, you won’t just be wearing it whilst “at” work, but also on your way to work, when you go for your lunch break, when you pop out for supplies, etc. You essentially become a walking billboard.
This doesn’t just apply to T-Shirts though. Depending on your business, why not get your URL printed onto your car/van, pens to giveaway, hats, coats, etc. anything that basically isn’t bolted down. Why do you think so many companies brand merchandise in this way.
2. Email Signature
If you are anything like me you spend a lot of time sifting through the mountain of emails you get every day. It can be a real pain at times, but you can actually turn that into a form of marketing. Whilst some of the emails you get will be from people who know exactly who you and your company are, many emails probably won’t.
Why not setup an email signature to automatically go out at the end of each of your emails. Here you can add a link to your website, as well as other important information (i.e. address, phone number, social media links, etc.). Essentially you are attaching an online business card to every email that you send out. Not only that, but it certainly makes your emails look more professional.
3. Giveaway A Free eBook
An eBook is a very unique product that you can create. Not only is it completely free to make, you don’t need to pay any publisher fees (as you can let people download it as a PDF from your site), but more importantly you can include as many links back to your site as you want within it.
Write up a simple eBook on a related subject to your business and allow people to download it from your site. Remember to email it out to your clients and share it with your colleagues as well. If people like it they can then share it with their friends, who can share it with their friends and so on creating a viral effect.
4. Run A Competition
Everyone likes the idea of winning something. Why not run a competition on your website giving away something for free to entrants. You could give away one of your existing products, perhaps offer your services to the lucky winner or giveaway something totally different.
Let people know about your competition though the usual channels (social media, email list, etc.) and that will naturally attract other people. The whole point of the competition is to raise awareness of your business, so it’s the people entering your competition who wouldn’t otherwise have found your website that you are most eagerly aiming for.
5. Online Forums & Groups
The internet is awash with forums and social media groups that specify on a whole host of different subjects. Get actively involved within these communities and you can raise the awareness of your brand. Not only is it a great way to interact with potential customers, but you can also learn a lot about what those people are after.
The marketing element comes in the form of you. Every time you leave a comment/post in one of these groups (preferably helping people out) you get recognised. If you can become an active member of that group, then you will be looked upon as an expert and someone that people turn to for that subject. Factor in as well that most forums allow you to add a link within your signature, then you begin to see how just being helpful to people can work in your favour.
6. Live Hangouts
Despite the fact that YouTube and the like has been around for ages now, hangouts still seem rather new. For anyone unfamiliar, a “hangout” (also known as a webinar) is a term used to describe a video conference that you can present live online where people from around the world can join and watch you.
You can use hangouts to talk to customers, promote products, run presentations, host entertaining shows, etc. Musicians are good examples of people who use this from of marketing well. Many up and coming bands will host live hangouts online in order to grow their fan base, essentially playing a live gig online.
What’s even better is that when hosting a live hangout on Google, you can set it to automatically recorded and uploaded to your YouTube channel. That way, you can turn a regular conversation/presentation into a promotional video for people to find whenever they want.
We mentioned before that social media is a tried and tested way of marketing your business. That, however, doesn’t mean that that is the only thing you can use it for. If anything, constantly using it for self-promotion can actually put people off rather than encourage them to buy from you.
Images are THE most shared type of media on social media. If you can incorporate more images to your online marketing strategy, then they stand a better chance of being shared. This could be funny images with your branding included in the bottom corner, a behind the scenes look at where you work, perhaps pictures of your products in unusual locations, etc. Be creative, unusual and try to have fun with it. Remember, Guerrilla marketing isn’t supposed to be as obvious as traditional marketing.
Everyone knows that the best way to get found online is via the search engines. What most people don’t realise is that YouTube is the second best way. Billions of searches are done on YouTube every day, meaning that you and your business can be found by a whole host of new people if approached in the right way.
Just like images, you don’t just have to create self-promotional videos (i.e. buy my product), it’s all about just getting your name/brand out there. Some companies create viral videos (a type of Guerrilla marketing) to help promote themselves in unusual ways. This often is done in a funny way, though can also be done in a poignant way.
Here are a few good examples that I found online. I bet you can’t guess what each of these videos is promoting until the very end (unless you cheat or have already seen them).
These are just a few examples that you can use to help promote yourself online. The great thing about this kind of marketing is that you can have fun with it and play around to see what works. Don’t be put off if something doesn’t work, just try something else and see what kind of reaction you get.
What other examples of Guerrilla marketing have you seen successfully used? What methods have you used that haven’t been mentioned here. We want to hear your opinions, so please feel free to leave a comment below.