Guerilla Marketing – Jay Levinson [Book Summary]

by Nick

What is the word “marketing” associated with?


Newspaper ads?

Have you ever thought about what “marketing” actually means? How about guerilla marketing?

Marketing consists of details that shape the consumer’s perception of the company: logo, product packaging, brochure, etc. The purpose of marketing is to manage people’s impressions by adjusting these details.

Marketing determines what products are presented to the buyer: exclusive or in the form of an optimal price/quality ratio.

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Marketing is an Ongoing Process That Encompasses All the Ways a Company Presents Itself to the World

Marketing is an ongoing process, not an isolated event. The marketing campaign is carefully planned and launched. This may include distributing leaflets on the street, sending out e-mails, or advertising on television.

At the end of the marketing campaign, one cannot rest on one’s laurels. The revenue earned through the campaign must be invested in marketing again. Why?

The world is constantly changing, new competitors are constantly appearing on the horizon, so you need to regularly attract the attention of consumers.

Marketing is aimed not only at attracting new customers but also at retaining existing ones. No matter how satisfied consumers are, they need to be reminded of their existence – through marketing.

Marketing can not be translated into the status of “completed”, you must constantly launch new campaigns.

Innovative and Affordable Guerrilla Marketing Ideal for Small Businesses

The term “guerrilla marketing” is widely heard.

But how does it differ from the traditional?

Most marketers believe that success is due to large investments – expensive television commercials and full-page magazine ads.

Partisan marketing is looking for new and innovative methods to attract customers, which is especially useful for small organizations with a small budget for marketing campaigns.

Traditional marketing is aimed at increasing sales or Internet traffic, and guerrilla marketing is focused only on financial results. That is, the success of a campaign is measured solely by the profit it brings.

This is reasonable, as other metrics may mislead the organization. Often, marketing campaigns of large enterprises break sales records but remain unprofitable. Partisan marketers simply cannot afford it.

Traditional marketing is a monologue, and partisan marketing is a dialogue.

Example. Classical television advertising is a pure monologue: a marketer sends a message, and consumers accept it “as is” without the possibility of expressing their own opinion.

In guerrilla marketing, both sides interact.

Example. Suppose you are organizing an online competition in which people are asked to leave feedback about the company. You can answer this review and start a dialogue with the client.

Dialogue gives small businesses an advantage over corporations – the ability to respond to every consumer.

You Must Position the Campaign Correctly

Marketing campaigns are diverse, but they are all aimed at positioning the organization. Positioning indicates a problem, determines the target group and the benefits of your product in solving this problem.

Positioning is the main element of a marketing strategy, it is constant for all campaigns.

Think carefully about every aspect of any campaign, because this represents the organization’s positioning. David Ogilvy (advertising guru and prototype of Don Draper’s hero in Mad Men) states: “Positioning is much more important than the design or wording of the advertisement.”

Example. Immediately after the opening of the JetBlue airline, the September 11 terrorist attack occurred, which reduced the popularity of air travel and greatly damaged the airline business. But positioning itself as a low-cost premium airline with pleasant amenities (screens in the backs of seats, comfortable leather seats), JetBlue was able to succeed.

The choice of the target group largely determines the positioning of the company. To make the right choice, you need to consider demographic indicators.

Example. A significant trend is the rapid aging of the population. To attract the attention of a consumer group such as older people, emphasize the mobility and independence that your products provide. Also, choose a large enough font for the advertising text.

Guerilla Marketing Campaign Must Make Seven Key Decisions

One of the success factors of guerrilla marketing is creativity. But there are certain rules for developing a marketing campaign.

You must answer seven questions about the campaign. Consider them by imagining that you run a bookstore specializing in freelance guides.

  1. Determine what physical activities target customers should take if the campaign succeeds. Example. You want people to visit the store and buy books.
  2. Identify your competitive advantage. Example. The valuable content of your books that people will want to pay for.
  3. Identify the target market. Example. Your market is freelancers and people who want to become them.
  4. Decide which marketing tools you want to use. Example. You can advertise in magazines, seminars and online forums for freelancers.
  5. Define the main activity of the company and its market niche. Example. The bookstore provides freelancers with valuable information.
  6. Determine your business personality based on the true nature of your business. Otherwise, customers will be disappointed when their expectations are not met. Example. A bookstore identity can be built on experience in the field of freelance and quick response to customer requests.
  7. Determine your campaign budget. The amount depends on how much you can spend and what results you expect.

Solving these seven questions will lay a solid foundation for your campaign.

For Marketing Success, Choose the Right Data Channel

To be effective, advertising must go through channels, each of which has its own advantages and disadvantages. Here are the most common options.

Printed magazines attract customers to participate. Readers of magazines pay much attention to each page, while newspapers are designed to quickly obtain the necessary information. Therefore, you can confidently post more information in magazines. Advertising should correspond to the general style of the magazine so that readers can easily move from the article they are interested in your ad.

Television not only demonstrates the benefits of the product but also combines visual and auditory stimuli, helping consumers remember the product faster. A television can catch the attention of millions of people at the same time if you advertise during prime time or broadcast the World Cup. But such an advertisement is too expensive for partisan marketers.

Internet marketing (e-mail advertising, chats, blogs, video cards or websites) appeared not so long ago. This channel allows you to communicate with customers for a long time, which opens up great opportunities for marketing. Fill your site with quality and interesting content to attract regular visitors.

Remember: channel selection should be the basis of a marketing strategy.

Internet Marketing is an Effective Weapon for Any Company

Internet marketing is a major part of the broader marketing category known as electronic media marketing.

Do not think that this does not apply to your company if it does not sell digital products. Every company should invest in internet marketing.


US consumers spend more than $ 632 billion on purchases of goods found on the Internet. Even if you do not have an online store, the World Wide Web can make you profit. Enough to put on the website their products and directions to the store.

Let’s say you want to use Internet marketing and have allocated funds for this.

How to distribute them correctly?

  • Allocate a third of the budget for developing a website that is interesting and useful to customers.
  • Even an ideal site is useless without visitors. Therefore, spend the second third of the budget on its promotion.
  • Pay attention to the site: update and develop it. This will go to the last third of the budget.

The second main channel of Internet marketing is email: it helps strengthen customer relationships. Even if you send the same letter to thousands of people, each of them will feel an individual attitude towards themselves, which will positively affect the company’s reputation.

Keep a list of the mailing addresses of satisfied customers, as they will be more willing to read what you send. But let customers decide for themselves whether they want to be on your list, for example, by offering a free newsletter on the company’s website.

Consumers Love Free Bonuses

Why do many companies send customers free product samples?

Because people love free bonuses.

This also applies to information. To attract more customers, provide them with free information about your business. This is called information media marketing.

Potential buyers will find out about you and your products and will feel safe when purchasing your product. Organize free seminars that highlight your expertise in your industry.

Example. A person owns a company that trains people to work with computers, and can not find new customers. He organized a free seminar for those who knew absolutely nothing about computers and attracted 500 visitors, thereby expanding his client base.

If people realize that it’s worth paying for a service or product, many will become real customers. Spend 15 minutes of an hour seminar on an advertising presentation or set up a stand near the exit where people can purchase your products or order a service.

Consumers also love free social events. Art galleries often take advantage of this when opening new exhibitions. You can invite your friends and acquaintances to a party with food, drinks, and music at your expense and at the very height of the fun, succinctly and enthusiastically talk about your product, while distributing free samples. The pleasant surroundings allow you to complete several trades that evening.

Marketing Without Media is Not Expensive, but Effective

The third option of guerrilla marketing is marketing without media (all marketing methods except paid media). But it will take time and creativity.

A well-known type of marketing without media is public relations (PR). An article in your newspaper about your company is part of PR because it helps build relationships between you and your readers. Such an article may be more effective than advertising.

The advantage of PR is the lack of cost. PR is more credible than paid advertising. How to publish articles about your company in newspapers, magazines, and blogs?

Meet the reporters.

Many companies do not do this and simply mail them a press kit or non-personalized information packages, hoping that they will write an interesting article on their basis.

But 80% of such materials go to the trash.

After meeting with reporters, you can invite them to dinner and hand over your press kit for a meal. So much more likely to succeed.

Another method of marketing without media is to engage in social activities. People like to do business with friends rather than strangers.

It is necessary to invest time and energy, demonstrating a sincere concern for society. Organize competitions, sponsor charity events, offer your product or service at public events for free.

When people see how you work for free for the good of society, they will decide that you work twice as hard if you get paid for it.


Guerilla marketing uses innovative and inexpensive methods to attract customers.

To successfully apply it, you need to find media that matches the marketing strategy of your company. This may be Internet marketing, public relations, free provision of a product or service.

Before launching a campaign, consider guerrilla marketing channels.

If you want to organize an expensive advertising campaign on television or in print media, take your time. Find out how small companies selling similar products or services advertise themselves. The small size of the business forces partisan marketers to develop innovative concepts that can inspire you to be creative.

Give consumers a product for free – it will pay off.

Having tested free product samples or versions of your services, people will understand how they will benefit from working with you and why you should pay for it. So you can significantly expand your customer base.

Why You Should Read “Guerilla Marketing”

  • To be able to advertise and marketing products or services without much spending
  • To master viral marketing principles
  • To stand out from the competitors and earn a unique image

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