3 Considerations for Guerilla Marketing

Guerilla soldier with thumbs up and sign that says Going Guerilla PROSAR.

We deal with a lot of small and medium sized businesses, and many are looking for the magic rocket that will quickly propel them to recognition, fame and fortune. They’ve heard of some fantastic event or promotion that made a start-up company a household name and driven 500% growth, and they want that. Who wouldn’t? Here are three important questions to ask when considering guerilla marketing.


How Does it Fit Into Your Marketing Plan?

Unfortunately, creating an Internet meme or popular guerilla marketing tactic is not likely; and not a realistic goal on its own. I certainly don’t underestimate the potential power of such a tactic, but the chance of being successful is remote… really, really remote. Before you start playing the marketing lottery, I suggest you invest in a good strategic plan. It sounds boring in comparison to a viral video or flash event, but it will focus your marketing efforts on tactics that will steadily move your company forward.

The advantage of a plan is that, well, its planned. It takes into consideration your current position, resources, your goals and where you want the company to be down the road. Growing your business successfully relies on planning your route to get there, and a strong brand [For more on Branding, check out: I Have a Website, Why Do I Need Branding?; Is Your Brand Relevant?] with structured marketing will accelerate that. True, some wild guerilla marketing would add an octane boost, but without the plan and marketing foundation, you might find yourself out of gas and coasting to the side of the road just as fast.

The benefits of a good marketing plan are numerous:

  • Build or support your brand
  • Clearly communicate what you stand for
  • Expand your market
  • Engage new audiences
  • Support sales goals
  • Improve the user-experience of dealing with your organization
  • Strengthen relationships with customers and leads
  • Provide measurable results to keep you on track

These are all important aspects in building a strong marketing foundation for your company. They allow you to project a professional image and provide targeted, clear communication to engage with your audience. They help customers to feel good about dealing with you and prompts referrals. They position your organization for growth and stability. And, they just might deliver a run-away successful tactic in the process.


How Much Can You Invest in Guerilla Marketing?

It may seem like success just happens miraculously, and all it took was a simple video. That can happen, but when it does it is a fluke. And, since no strategy is built around it, it is quickly forgotten when the next wave of cool videos and memes flow along the Internet current. Hard to ride the wave if you aren’t prepared for it.

On the other hand, companies have wasted large budgets on carefully crafted, wittily worded, and slickly sequenced videos and “impromptu” events that have gone no where. So budget alone does not determine the likelihood of success. Other than luck, the most important aspects are strategy and understanding. Strategy is main thrust of this article; understanding relates to your audience, social and societal considerations, the chosen media and communication. It’s a lot to understand and requires a team to gather the intelligence, decipher its relevance, integrate this knowledge and align it with your strategy and goals, design, develop and implement the magical event/video/meme that goes viral. Fortunately, both strategy and understanding are inherent in a good marketing plan.

It is a significant commitment of people, process and time, so don’t waste resources on trying to develop the rocket that will propel your brand to stardom, until you have your growth planned and a marketing strategy to get you there. It’s certainly possible that one of your planned and measured tactics designed to move you further along your structured marketing plan may go viral. And it makes sense to try to create such a tactic — as long as it is part of comprehensive plan and budget.


Besides Popularity, What is the Goal?

So, how would you leverage the popularity garnered from a run-away viral hit? Would it dovetail into your existing plan, or would you need new online workflows (landing pages, forms email campaigns, etc.), sales team strategy, PR campaigns, etc., to take advantage of this boost. If you’re fortunate enough to find success, don’t let it plummet away from you.

Be ready to respond promptly and positively. Popularity is wonderful, but usually fleeting. You’ll need to connect it strategically to your brand, processes and sales pipeline to successfully sustain your growth efforts. Again, it’s that boring plan that truly propels you to success, otherwise you simply have a really cool video that everyone watched for three days.

Planning is the key to business and marketing success. The better prepared you are, the more in-tune you are with your audience, media and environment in which you play, the more likely you will succeed. This gives you a strong foundation for sustainable growth, and makes it even more likely that a guerilla marketing tactic could work for you. But if it doesn’t, your organization is still progressing towards achieving its goals.

Guerilla soldier with thumbs up and sign that says Going Guerilla PROSAR.

Photo Credit: MichealJay/gettyimages.com

3 Considerations for Finding Better Blog Topics

Above view of business man working place. Cup of coffee, laptop, notebook and pen. Business, education or blogging concept.

Whether you’re just starting your company website or you’ve been in the game for a while, it’s no secret that blogging has become a central component of content marketing. And, the reason why it’s become so prevalent is because frequent and regular company blogging can significantly increase your page ranking. In today’s rich information world, however, simply maintaining an up-to-date blog is no longer enough. To attract and retain clients your blogs should be written in an engaging and meaningful style; they need to stand out and be deemed worthy of reading. After all, pretty much all your competitors are writing blogs too.

So, when it comes to writing blogs for your organization what’s the secret? How do you factor in both quantity and quality?

To get the most out of your blogs, to rank high on searches and convert more leads into sales, here are three important considerations

1. Get a vision for how you want to house your blogs

It doesn’t matter if you’re writing yourself or you’ve hired a team of experts. Before coming up with topics you should be prepared to ask yourself what you want in your blog and to do some research. If you’re stuck on this, go see what your competitors’ and others in your field are doing, you need to see what they already have that could appeal to your audience. This will help you see how you can make your blog page and content unique and more attractive. No matter what stage you’re in, if you’re in the midst of changing or revamping your blog page, aesthetics also plays a huge role in strengthening and building customer loyalty. Once you’ve come up with a good vision of how you want to structure and design your blog page, only then should you start fleshing out blog topics.

2. Find topics by looking within your company, and your staff

Your blog page should serve as an informative, interesting, and even enjoyable, user’s guide. Every aspect and angle of your service or product can be explored in ways that make them relevant and meaningful to your audience. Your blogs should be written in such a way that it clearly explains and showcases all the great qualities that your organization has to offer. And, what better way to pinpoint all the unique aspects of your company than to at look at your staff for guidance? Your employees reflect all the different units that make up your company. From first-hand experience, they typically know what benefits your service/product has to offer and how the organization meets clients’ needs on a day-to-day basis.

Ask your team questions like:

What are some frequently asked questions from our clients?

How do we enrich the lives of our clients?

What’s a memorable conversation that you’ve had with a client or supplier?

There are additional benefits in talking to your staff: it will not only help you choose some hot topics for your blog, this in-house communication will also increase your overall knowledge about your clients.

3. Go to the heart of your company – the clients

The secret of some the most successful company blogs is that they’ve managed to get into the mindset of their clients. Every communicator appreciates the need to know their audience! Reading your blog may be a potential client’s first impression of your company, so be conscious of starting a relationship and be prepared to carry on a conversation. The key to choosing informative and engaging blog topics that speak to your clients is to pick up on typical buyer cues. This will help you hone in on specific company messages to promote within your blog. You can also get a better idea of who your company’s clients are and flesh out their personas. With this information you can  connect more personally with your audience through your blogs, making it more likely to get referrals.

Writing company blogs regularly and effectively can seem like an onerous task. However, with proper planning of blog topics, it will prove to be an extremely rewarding marketing tool. Put in the time and effort in a strategic fashion, and it will surely pay off! If you are producing relevant and readable material, you can define your brand as a trustworthy and valued online resource; and that is something that your audience will appreciate.

Whether you’ve chosen to write blogs yourself or to hire a specialized marketing team, these are simple in-house tactics that will help as you strategize your blog topics. Read more on how to convert your topics into blogs so that they take advantage of blogging tactics like SEO and link building in “Blogging for Qualified SEO,” “Content Creation for Link Building,” and specific writing strategies in,  “Good Content is FRUITFUL: Your 8-Point Checklist to Writing Content Worth Reading.”

image credit: Dutko / gettyimages