Digital Communications Lead - Middle East & Africa, Talkwalker
We all have these crazy marketing campaign ideas that never see the light of day, because we don’t have crazy marketing budgets to back them.
New data reveals that only 9% of digital advertisers are using guerrilla marketing to grow their business in 2019. What a missed opportunity!
Here are three ways you can use guerrilla marketing to jump in on a global conversation or trend, without digging deep into your pockets.
1. Stealth marketing
This is one of the more subtle and clever ways of pushing your brand message across. When you work on a stealth marketing campaign, the main idea is to not pitch your product. Instead, get your audience engaged, and keep them on their feet. While this type of marketing does not always guarantee direct results, if executed well, it can really take off, and leave with you a highly engaged community.
Interestingly, Burger King’s Saudi Arabia Twitter account (@BURGERKINGKSA) has recently pulled this off. After suddenly deleting all the tweets on their account, Burger King KSA started cryptically tweeting out references to the Arabic noun "صياح" - meaning shouting or whooping. They even went as far as simply using variations of that word as replies to angry customer complaints on the platform, causing the audience to suspect the account has been hacked.
Ultimately, the brand shared a video which introduced their newest menu with the caption “introducing our new ‘we heard your spicy whoops menu’ - don’t be shy and order it.”
2. Ambient marketing
Ambient marketing is all about being present in as many places as possible. This is traditionally implemented through advertising on unusual objects in locations that are frequented daily, but that aren’t necessarily considered advertising spaces- for example, bathroom cubicles, stairs, metro ceilings, etc.
However, now that we’re heading towards an increasingly digital future, it’s time for marketers to start thinking of ambient marketing in a digital sense too. An excellent example of a brand that does that is Nike. With video predicted to take over web traffic by 2021, Nike are ensuring they stay ahead of the game by intuitively incorporating video in their social strategy. They regularly create ads specifically for Instagram - ones that are actually made for vertical and tease the audience to swipe up to complete the user journey Nike has strategized. With over 500 million users on Instagram daily, engaging Instagram stories can certainly be a form of ambient marketing as, like it or not, they are all around us!
3. Viral marketing
You’ve probably seen this type of marketing before. We all have. It’s the type that goes viral!
Using this approach, you rely on your audience to do all the work. At least when it comes to spreading the message. By creating a relatable and shareable piece of content, you might just strike the right chord. Humor, nostalgia, and emotion-driven ideas work particularly well for these campaigns and a simple caption or photo can spiral into virality.
Let’s take IKEA UAE as an example. They worked with their agency to create creatives where they IKEA products were used to recreate some of the most iconic living rooms from pop culture (The Simpsons, Friends, and Stranger Things) and these photos went viral. It was a very relatable post with the appeal of nostalgia, simplicity, and pop culture. Interestingly, the post that went viral wasn’t IKEA UAE’s post, but rather a tweet by content marketer, Matthew Kobach (@mkobach).
He did a deep dive into the elements that sparked the virality of his tweet and came to the conclusion that it was a mix of good timing, relatable copy, easy to consume content, striking imagery, and the compilation of three creatives in one post that attracted the different fan bases of the three shows to share the same tweet. There’s also the fact that his post didn’t require a click on a link. It was simply about exposure. A master class in viral marketing right there.
So: when you can’t change your marketing budget, just change your marketing approach!
For a more comprehensive guide that will inspire you to learn from some of the world’s biggest brands, download Talkwalker’s guerrilla marketing hacks here.