Guerrilla Marketing - Not Gorilla Marketing

Guerrilla marketing is not gorilla marketing. Yet sometimes entrepreneurs get the two confused. I’ll be the first to admit there have been times I’ve beat my chest and screamed loudly in an attempt to get noticed. And although gorilla tactics are noisy, it doesn’t take long to discover they are also annoying.

Guerrilla Marketing - Not Gorilla Marketing

from Flickr: Screwtape

In case you are unclear about the difference between the two, here it is in a nutshell. Gorilla marketing is equivalent to yelling, shouting, pushing, and shoving to get noticed. It tends to be expensive because it cost a lot of money to yell your message louder than all the other gorillas out there. Guerrilla marketing takes a different approach. Instead of investing boatloads of money, guerrilla marketers invest time, energy, imagination, and information to get the attention of their potential clients or customers. Volume has little to do with guerrilla marketing because the focus is on authentic connection.

With that said, an excellent guerrilla marketing tool that is neither noisy or annoying is referrals. Strong referrals allow you to market your services without beating your chest. In fact, raving fans end up beating their chests about you!

This begs the question: What are some of the best ways to gain solid referrals.

5 Guerrilla Marketing Ideas for Gaining Referrals
(None of Which Require You to Beat Your Chest)

Shock and Awe. Here’s a great strategy I picked up in this free course by Bill Glazer and Dan Kennedy. When a meeting planner contacts me about speaking, I send a “shock and awe” package. This package includes a copy of Who Wants To Be Normal, Anyway, a Show Up and Shine coffee mug, an E+R=O wristband, a hand-written note, and more. Notice this is sent BEFORE I am hired. It’s my way of showing prospective clients who I am and how I serve. This one act of kindness usually takes our dialogue deeper and begins to establish a real connection. Additionally, if the event planner decides not to hire me, the relationship continues to grow and I’m often put on the short list for next year’s conference. In fact, many meeting planners end up referring me to others who are looking for a speaker even if they have yet to hire me themselves.

Serve. Serve. Serve. And Serve Some More. I learned this from Dan Miller of 48 Days. He gives away 90-95 percent of his content through his podcast, blog, and newsletter. This creates an enthusiastic fan base of people who are quick to refer him to others searching for career help.  

Integrity. Mean what you say and say what you mean. Always tell the truth. Serve as if you are serving your family because, in many ways, your clients and customers are your extended family.

Seek forgiveness. Even if you strive to serve with integrity, you will occasionally misspeak or make a mistake. When it happens, don’t make excuses. Don’t even apologize. Ask for forgiveness. There are several people I do business with who have dropped the ball with me in the past. However, the way they responded to their mistake made me trust them even more.

Ask. Even if you develop raving fans, you still need to ask them for references and testimonies. Check out the Live It Forward testimonies, Speak It Forward testimonies, and the testimonies on my speaker site. In each case, individuals were more than willing to share a testimony, but we wouldn’t have received nearly as many if we didn’t ask.

In summary, wow your prospective clients by serving them before the sale. Keep surprising them after they purchase or hire you. Over deliver on your promises. Add value. Serve with integrity. Seek forgiveness when you make a mistake. Implement these guerrilla marketing strategies and watch your referrals grow exponentially!

Questions: Which of these guerrilla marketing ideas have served you the best? What other guerrilla marketing strategies have helped you grow your referral marketing?


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