Executive Summary Guerilla Marketing – an alternative marketing form that has been experiencing increasing importance in the advertising landscape, ever since customers are besieged with classical marketing communication via the traditional channels TV, Magazines, Radio and Direct Mail. Guerilla Marketing is a brilliant idea, involving the customer in a surprising, unconventional marketing activity. The term “Guerilla” (battle) roots back to the war of independence in Spain and Portugal, the revolution in Cuba, and the Vietnamese War.
Here “Guerilla” stood for an attack strategy based on the surprise effect and on acts of sabotage, which was used by smaller groups that stood against a massive military force. In the 1960’s US firms brought the “Guerilla” tactics to Marketing, when they needed new ways to outdo competitors. Then they merely attacked weak points of competitors by implementing preliminary injunctions for their campaigns for instance. Only in 1983 did Jay Conrad Levinson make the term “Guerilla Marketing” known as a philosophy for small and start-up companies to successfully market their business with a small amount of money.
He based the success of a marketing strategy on the use of non-traditional marketing channels, customer proximity, insistency, and patience. Through the drastic technological development until today and its complimentary change in the advertising market, Guerilla Marketing has developed into a marketing form mostly used for Promotion these days. New forms such as Ambush and Viral Marketing have evolved. The evolved Guerilla Marketing form is now used by companies of all sizes; Global Players such as BMW use it, and start-up companies do so to create brand awareness.
How this is actually done in practice, is illustrated by the case study of the soft drink producer Bionade Corporation in Germany, displaying various facets of the Guerilla Marketing principle. How such Guerilla Marketing activities are perceived by the actual prospect was researched through a customer survey. In fact a majority of the respondents stated that such advertisements do catch their attention and interest, whereas they consciously avoid traditional marketing as for instance TV advertisement. So Guerilla Marketing can find a way to actually V
BACHELOR THESIS Anna Druing ? Katharina Fahrenholz GUERILLA MARKETING – OLD PHILOSOPHY WITH FUTURE? reach the customer, at least in the first two steps of the AIDA Model1. This great potential of the Guerilla Marketing was confirmed by Marketing Experts in the course of an interview. They could imagine that the traditional Marketing Channels such as TV and magazine, who will also be at the forefront in the future, will take over characteristics of Guerilla Marketing in order to actually reach the customer.
Financially strong companies should use Guerilla Marketing as a complimentary tool to present the brand in a multimodal way. Smaller firms can make use of the cost-effective strategy to get the spotlight on their brand. Good co-operation with for instance the Public Relations department is essential to increase the Guerilla Marketing effect enormously. However its potential is used, it has to be done cleverly to stand out from the 3000 advertising messages a day with which today’s consumer is flooded.
Guerilla Marketing will adapt with the customers, find ways to surprise them and interest them by putting the idea in the forefront, not the brand. 1 Appendix: AIDA model VI BACHELOR THESIS Anna Druing ? Katharina Fahrenholz GUERILLA MARKETING – OLD PHILOSOPHY WITH FUTURE? Methodology Our research is based on diverse research methods in order to gain as many different perspectives on the topic as possible. Therefore we used primary as well as secondary data collection in combination with desk and field research.
Our first part concerning the history and development of Guerilla Marketing has a theoretical background. Since Guerilla Marketing has became popular recently, only very few authors have written books about the topic so far. Therefore we believe that one of the best sources for those research questions are the books and publications of the marketer Jay Conrad Levinson, titled the “The Father of Guerrilla Marketing”2 , who spread the knowledge of the Guerilla concept in the 1980’s and has updated his editions until today.
Al Ries’ and Jack Trout’s perception of Guerilla Marketing, as well as Philip Kotler were taken into account. For further analysis of the development of Guerilla Marketing secondary data such as articles, publications, and examples of activities were used. We also utilized selected case studies to underline our theoretical findings, especially on the example of Bionade. As a foundation for our section about the current use of Guerilla we used input from Marketing newspapers, trade journals and other publications.
However, since journalists just started to pay attention to this trend, we analyzed numerous Guerilla Marketing activities to formulate conclusions. For the conclusion of our report we wanted to find an answer concerning the future perspective of Guerilla Marketing. In order to bring additional objectiveness to our report we also included the results from expert interviews as well as from a customer survey. One of the qualitative interviews will be held with Bionade Product Manager Christian Rath.
Bionade successfully used the Guerilla Marketing approach in the past. Furthermore we were in contact with some Marketing professionals that already worked with Guerilla Marketing and showed interest in our work. They shared their experiences, opinions, and their publica 2 Guerilla Marketing International VII BACHELOR THESIS Anna Druing ? Katharina Fahrenholz GUERILLA MARKETING – OLD PHILOSOPHY WITH FUTURE? cles. ions on rather subjective questions for which the answers could not be found in public arti- Since we believe that the future of Guerilla Marketing will also be strongly determined by the current perspective and perception of the customers, we conducted a questionnaire that gave us some interesting insights into the perception of traditional and alternative marketing forms. VIII BACHELOR THESIS Anna Druing ? Katharina Fahrenholz GUERILLA MARKETING – OLD PHILOSOPHY WITH FUTURE? 1. Introduction
Guerilla Marketers can get you anywhere – on your way home from work, in the car, bus and train, on the streets, strolling or relaxing at a cafe terrace, in front of your house, or at major events. It is like love: You will find it at the moment you do not expect it at all! And at the moment you notice the advertisement and start thinking about its message they have what they want – your attention and interest. Guerilla Marketing distinguishes itself from other promotion tools by its surprise effect and it has become a very popular marketing strategy in current times.
The name “Guerilla” originally describes a group that uses a violent approach to achieve the implementation of their beliefs and ideology. Their opponents are often a tremendous force consisting of more people and even of more resources such as weapons or money. The Guerilla fighter’s only advantage is the fact that only they know where and when they will strike. The original approach of Guerilla Marketing is an alternative marketing strategy that suits small and medium-sized companies to act like the Guerilla fighters have in the past: hit vulnerable targets of larger enemies by taking them by surprise.
The unexpected and unusual Guerilla Marketing campaigns helped smaller companies to successfully reach their target group, even though their bigger market competitors had a larger marketing budget, more experience, and a better spread to advance the market by using traditional marketing strategies. Many small and medium-sized companies started with Guerilla Marketing and established their business lucratively. Through constant growth rates they have the means to also afford traditional marketing tools to gain more and more market share, continuing to attack the market leaders.
Those accomplishments drew the attention of larger companies to Guerilla Marketing. Now this alternative approach is used by companies of all sizes. Various agencies have specialized in developing Guerilla strategies. Within the advertising branch it is almost something like a remedy that every business can use successfully. 1 BACHELOR THESIS Anna Druing ? Katharina Fahrenholz GUERILLA MARKETING – OLD PHILOSOPHY WITH FUTURE? This development leads to some interesting questions: Is this trend going to continue? Will all companies be able to use it in the future?
Will customers still be surprised and show the desirable reactions even though many companies already use Guerilla Marketing today? Do small companies have a chance with their Guerilla Marketing approach when larger companies are willing to spend a fortune on their Guerilla Marketing activities? This report gives an insight into the origin of Guerilla Marketing as being a tool for small to medium-sized companies to achieve large impacts with little resources. Further it will show its development, focusing on the current market situation, where many Big Players use this alternative method as well.
The conclusion will answer the question if the developed concept of Guerilla Marketing can also be successfully applied in the future. 2 BACHELOR THESIS Anna Druing ? Katharina Fahrenholz GUERILLA MARKETING – OLD PHILOSOPHY WITH FUTURE? 2. 2. 1. 2. 1. 1. When did Guerilla Marketing appear and how did it develop? Roots of Modern Guerilla Marketing Terminology of Guerilla The term “Guerilla” first appeared during the war of independence in Spain and Portugal at the beginning of the 19th century.
It is a Spanish expression which can be translated as “battle”. Guerilla stands for a combat operation that was used by smaller groups that stood against a massive military force. The term and the connected operations became famous through Ernesto Che Guevara Lynch de la Serna (1928 – 1967), best known as Che Guevara, who used and defined this military tactic. He belonged to a small militia group which wanted to put their political concept through. They were clearly in the weaker position and their only chance to achieve a successful revolution in Cuba was to fight the national military.
Since Che Guevara and his followers did not possess as many resources such as weapons, money, or fighters as their opponents, they based their operations on the surprise effect and on acts of sabotage. Due to their size they had the advantage of being more flexible, having a quicker coordination and knowing the territory better. The usage of unconventional weapons and activities helped them to destabilize their rivals and led them to their final success. Che Guevara defined and shaped basic principles for his fighters and summarized them in the book “Guerilla Warfare” that he wrote in 1961.
These are the most important elements that can be pointed out: • • • Ultimate goal: victory over the enemy Usage of surprise effects Tactical superiority3 During the 1960’s the United States of America faced major difficulties in the Vietnam War. Even though Vietnam was theoretically much weaker, the US were not able to bring the enemy down. Especially the Vietcong force was unbeatable, because they used the Guerilla tactics that destabilized the American forces constantly. The Vietcong’s operations were 3 Guerilla Marketing Portal 3
BACHELOR THESIS Anna Druing ? Katharina Fahrenholz GUERILLA MARKETING – OLD PHILOSOPHY WITH FUTURE? similar to Che Guevara’s activities. They also used the surprise effect, were much more flexible than their enemies, fought on Vietnamese territory, and used unusual means. This was the first time that Americans got to know the principles of Guerilla. 2. 1. 2. “Guerilla” enters Marketing At the same time America’s marketing experts were looking for new approaches to gain the attention of customers.
The consumer’s behaviour had changed and businesses had to come up with offers that fit their consumers’ needs and not only their own. Consequently marketing experts had to find realizable concepts for businesses with limited resources; something that lets one company stand out in the crowd. The only promising way was to use an anti-marketing concept that included attrition and attack strategies in order to gain as much attention as possible and to weaken competitors considerably. This was not only realized by aggressive marketing efforts, but also through legal means such as preliminary injunctions for campaigns of competitors. 2. 1. 3. Guerilla Marketing Philosophers Levinson Of course Guerilla Marketing did not conquer the marketing world over night. The new strategy needed some years to develop and to become an integral part of business strategies. During the 1980s the US market was flooded with 11 million new founded companies. 10. 8 million of them were small-sized companies that needed a strategy to fight their bigger competitors with a small budget. In order to make the Guerilla idea accessible to everybody Jay Conrad Levinson defined the root idea in his book “Guerrilla Marketing” in 1983.
His publications provided not only an explanation of the essential marketing ideas, but also a philosophy for small business owners who wanted to follow the Guerilla Marketing idea. He introduced new ways of advertising and presenting a business well with a small budget and based the success of a marketing strategy on the use of non-traditional marketing channels, customer proximity, insistency, and patience. A company should create as many points of contact with customers and prospects as possible in order to stay in their memory. He further believed that a long-lasting campaign will bring the desired competitive advantage. Schulte 4 BACHELOR THESIS Anna Druing ? Katharina Fahrenholz GUERILLA MARKETING – OLD PHILOSOPHY WITH FUTURE? Levinson’s book explains the basic pillars of Guerilla Marketing in a simple way and made him the “Father of Guerilla Marketing”. It was sold over 1 million times and translated into 37 languages. Updated versions of the book are released every few years. The revised passages mainly deal with new technologies and marketing channels that change over the years and offer new possibilities. 5
Ries/Trout Only three years after Levinson released his first edition in 1983, the American Marketing experts Al Ries and Jack Trout specified the root idea of Levinson, but they also developed some opposed elements. Like Levinson, Trout and Ries believed that Guerilla marketing best suits small and medium-sized companies. Trout pointed out that the market size also has to be manageable with the limited and available resources. Therefore he suggests specializing and investing in a niche product and/or market niche. In general small business owners should use their advantageous flexibility even more.
Both Ries and Trout suggest that a small business should try to use every product and/or market niche that becomes available and furthermore not hesitate to change their approach in case they believe that another strategy would be more profitable. Therefore insistency and patience is not one of the essential elements anymore like it was in Levinson’s opinion. Furthermore Ries emphasized that a lean organizational structure with a centralized top management makes it easier for a growing company to continue to save costs and to keep their flexibility. 6
Kotler The marketing expert Kotler also analysed the Guerilla tactics in the 1990s. Kotler suggests that such a competitive strategy should be adopted by market challengers that try to increase their own profitability by gaining more market share from other companies in the same industry. A competitive advantage over the challenged company is the foundation for a good strategy, but also involves high risks, especially when the potential gain is high, warns Kotler. Mainly smaller and financially weaker companies are then using an aggressive Guerilla attack. Such a campaign can even be a tool to fight the current market leader.
Unlike Levin 5 6 Levinson Ries; Trout 5 BACHELOR THESIS Anna Druing ? Katharina Fahrenholz GUERILLA MARKETING – OLD PHILOSOPHY WITH FUTURE? son, Ries, and Trout, Kotler believes that the main purpose of Guerilla Marketing is to destabilize the opponent – or best to destroy the competitors with the help of attrition tactics. 7 7 Kotler, Wong, Saunders, Armstrong 6 BACHELOR THESIS Anna Druing ?
Katharina Fahrenholz GUERILLA MARKETING – OLD PHILOSOPHY WITH FUTURE? 3. 3. 1. 3. 1. 1. How is Guerilla Marketing defined and used today? What is Guerilla Marketing? Definition Around the globe, marketing experts, researchers, and discoverers eagerly try to find the allembracing description of Guerilla Marketing, since no official definition of the term exists so far. Many explanations have thus been created and even though they vary in their wording, they mostly have the following characteristics of Guerilla Marketing in common: Creative, unconventional, surprising and efficient. Guerilla Marketing is a marketing strategy, nowadays predominantly used for the Marketing Mix “P” Promotion. 9 It is a marketing form, which involves the consumer in the advertising experience. Guerilla Marketing campaigns display creative ideas dynamically with unconventional methods at places where advertising would be least expected. The aim is to irritate, fascinate, and animate the consumer. The surprise effect belongs to the root philosophy. It is advisable not to repeat a Guerilla action as it might not be surprising anymore, but rather annoying.
Guerilla Marketing should stand out from the saturated advertising landscape by being fun and not bothersome. Classical marketing communication via TV commercials, Newspaper Ads, Radio Spots, and Direct Mail does not really excite the customer anymore. Unconventional forms on the other hand can accomplish excitement. Guerilla Marketing, Viral Marketing, and Word-of-Mouth Marketing are concepts that gain rising importance, especially through one increasingly important marketing channel: the Internet. Significant for Guerilla Marketing is to reach maximum customer attention with minimal costs.
It is central to emphasize the brand’s strengths and minimize its weaknesses in order to attack competitors. Thereby the Guerilla Marketing strategy is based on imagination, unconventionality, and flexibility instead of market power, enterprise size, and marketing budgets. A false conclusion would be to think that the lower budget means the Guerilla marketing activities require less effort. The involvement for successful Guerilla Marketing is high. Energy and time are the main ingredients. 8 9 Guerilla Marketing Portal Bieri; Handschin; Siegenthaler; Spycher 7
BACHELOR THESIS Anna Druing ? Katharina Fahrenholz GUERILLA MARKETING – OLD PHILOSOPHY WITH FUTURE? So far the beginning and the current definition of Guerilla Marketing was described. In the 1980s it was seen as an integral part of the business strategy, while now in the 21st century it is mainly a communication strategy. The following part will link the two sides and explain what influenced the Guerilla Marketing to develop to its current usage. 3. 1. 2. Technological Development “Markets today are changing fast.
Price-sensitive customers, new competitors, new distribution channels, new communication channels, the Internet, wireless commerce, globalization, deregulation, privatization… the list goes on. And it is not only markets that are changing, but the technologies that support them: e-commerce, e-mail, mobile phones, fax machines, sales, and marketing automation, cable TV, videoconferencing. It is imperative that companies think through the revolutionary impact of these new technologies. “10 These developments have changed for instance the way customers behave.
Increasing transparency through the internet enables buyers to acquire product information, compare them directly with competitors, and easily make worldwide purchases. Businesses adapt their procedures according to the market and technology development. Especially in Marketing innovative ways of promoting products and brands have come up. An example are blogs, podand nanocasting in the online marketing scene. Within these developments Guerilla Marketing experienced increasing importance since more and more businesses demand practice oriented solutions for short term results. 1 In times of globalisation the competitive pressure is high and the free market economy is tough. Marketing has to carry out more and more tasks with tight budgets. Thereby it is a thin line between annoying and attracting customers. 3. 1. 3. Uniformity vs. Creativity It was always the aim of marketers to attract new customers and to keep the existing customers loyal, but since the market and the environment have changed so immensely, the way to get through to the customer has also changed. During the 1980s marketers – among them Jay C.
Levinson with his Guerilla Marketing strategy – supported the belief that prospects have to be exposed to the same marketing message as often as possible. Research showed that people need to see an advertisement up to 13 times before they understand what the product 10 11 Kotler, Jain, Maesincee Levinson, 2007 8 BACHELOR THESIS Anna Druing ? Katharina Fahrenholz GUERILLA MARKETING – OLD PHILOSOPHY WITH FUTURE? is and that it can be beneficial for them.
Consequently business owners were urged to publicise their name, logo, and message at every possible opportunity. To take the early forms of Guerilla Marketing as an example, small companies had over 200 different marketing weapons that allowed them to catch their customers’ attention over and over again. Furthermore a chosen strategy had to be kept for a long period even if it did not bring the desired success immediately. Levinson motivated this guideline with the fact that only a certain number of exposures can bring the customer to a final purchase. Simply put, Marketing takes time and consequently business owners have to wait.
A hasty change in strategy would reset the customers mind and the invested time and money would have been wasted. 12 Even though the explanation sounds logical it is not realizable anymore today. The market and the environment change rapidly and all companies try to get the attention of the customer as often as possible. As a result every customer is confronted with 3000 sales messages every day. What makes it even worse is the fact that advertising messages from the same companies are repeated several times a day – up to 50 times. Companies achieved what they wanted. Customers cannot go anywhere without being swamped with advertising.
Unfortunately customers are not interested in such classical marketing communication like they used to be. Consequently they do not perceive and remember the message afterwards. Of course for businesses this is a very costly activity that does not bring the desired success. 13 Still companies all over the world invest billions in traditional activities, which are often not affordable for smaller companies. The solution is a cost-effective marketing form that stands out in the crowd of advertisings and catches the attention of the customer even in the rapidly changing marketing world of today.
Marketers always have to come up with new ideas to spotlight their brand and protect the surprise effect of every Guerilla Marketing activity. In the end the surprise effect can create the most positive reaction from the customer. The aim is to create more brand awareness. The aspects of Guerilla Marketing also fit these needs of today – away from uniformity and insistency towards creativity and flexibility. 12 13 Levinson Marketing Partner 9 BACHELOR THESIS Anna Druing ? Katharina Fahrenholz GUERILLA MARKETING – OLD PHILOSOPHY WITH FUTURE? . 2. Guerilla Marketing Instruments Over the years Guerilla Marketing has developed and created many forms, so called weapons. These weapons should support the root philosophy of Guerilla Marketing which entails creative, witty inspiration. As we know Guerilla Marketing is a dynamic way to create brand awareness. Done with simple tools those actions should be spectacular and clever to catch the attention of a certain target group. To get an overall picture of the potential of Guerilla Marketing weapons we have classified them by categories: Out-of-Home, New Media, and Low Budget Weapons.
Again no official definition exists, but the following distinction by experts of Guerilla Marketing Portal (GMP) has been build up logically and is therefore referred to in this paper14: Guerilla Marketing Weapons Out-of-Home Weapons Ambient Marketing Guerilla Sensation Ambush Marketing New Media Weapons Viral Marketing Guerilla Mobile Low Budget Weapons Clever ideas for small and medium-sized companies Figure 1: Guerilla Marketing Weapon Categories 3. 2. 1. Out-of-Home Weapons As the name “out-of-home” suggests, these weapons refer to marketing ctivities that are actually realised at public locations. At best it does not only catch the interest of people who pass by, but media interest as well. Newspaper reports about the action can create extra publicity for the advertised company and stimulates that people talk about the product. The expansion of brand awareness is the aim. The most successful weapons in the category out-ofhome are Guerilla Sensation, Ambient Media, and Ambush Marketing. 14 Guerilla Marketing Portal 10 BACHELOR THESIS Anna Druing ?
Katharina Fahrenholz GUERILLA MARKETING – OLD PHILOSOPHY WITH FUTURE? 3. 2. 2. Ambient Marketing The term became well-known in the 1990s. Ambient Media refers to non-traditional out-ofhome advertising. While other out-of-home Marketers advertise on large-scale billboards, ambient advertisements are posted on manhole covers, cranes, pizza cartons, free postcards in bars and so on. They are all a little more unusual displays. Until today newer ambient media have come up, such as messages on large-format screens in subways or handles of supermarket trolleys. There are no limits to formats there. 5 The American Mark Hughes had what is probably one of the most profitable ideas concerning the placement of an advertisement. He used the blank backside of the fortune cookie slips given out in Chinese restaurants for an advertising message. These – in production cheap marketing messages reached 7 million restaurant guests in one week and were therefore very profitable. Mark Hughes has been able to make a lot of money by selling this noticed advertising space to companies. 16 The important aspect is to seek out the target group at their preferred location in an entertaining way.
Ambient Marketing tries to approach the customer individually through the place of contact. Some experts claim that Ambient Marketing does not belong to Guerilla Marketing, since it does not fulfil the typical characteristics of being surprising and dynamic. Indeed Ambient is more static, one-sided marketing. Still it can also be a medium with good potential to bring attention to a brand or product in a creative way. 3. 2. 3. Guerilla Sensation Guerilla Sensation is very similar to Ambient Marketing. Therefore it is easier to show the difference. As described above, Ambient Marketing positions advertising at unusual places.
Hereby the main focus is not necessarily on the idea, but on the advertising space itself. People are confronted with advertisements where and when they do not expect it. In general Guerilla Sensation works with the same principle, but it is only used on a very limited number of events and activities. The number of prospects that are exposed to the advertisement is therefore relatively small compared to a few million people that might get in 15 16 Webguerillas Streitz 11 BACHELOR THESIS Anna Druing ?
Katharina Fahrenholz GUERILLA MARKETING – OLD PHILOSOPHY WITH FUTURE? contact with an Ambient Marketing campaign as the example of the Fortune Cookies described above. But such Guerilla Sensation actions can gain further, non-regional attention by making it to the media. Often newspapers are looking for extraordinary, unusual pictures, which are often delivered by Guerilla Sensation activities. Through good Public Relations controversial or very original Guerilla ideas of a brand can be a widely discussed issue in the media as well. Of course the line between Ambient Marketing and Guerilla Sensation is thin.
Some Guerilla Sensation activities become an Ambient Marketing activity, because modern technologies spread the message. Guerilla Sensation characteristics are those described in the Guerilla Marketing definition. 17 3. 2. 4. Ambush Marketing Ambush means attack out of the blue, reminding at the Guerilla Attacks from Che Guevara. It stands for a sneaky out-of-home marketing method, which promotes a brand at huge events without paying a sponsorship fee. At many major events one brand of a particular category pays a high price to be the exclusive sponsor, which leaves their competitors be left in the dark.
Ambush Marketers then still find a way to make notice of their brand in connection with the event, since it attracts the attention of thousands of visitors and even viewers on TV. Pepsi for instance placed a huge oversize Pepsi bottle close to a soccer game which was sponsored by Coca Cola. Giving out company material on a fair without having a stand is also Ambush Marketing. The legal boundaries can be thin as Vodafone experienced in Australia in 2002. The rugby match between the All Blacks from New Zealand and the Wallabies from Australia was interrupted by two naked streakers whose bodies were painted with Vodafone logos.
The bizarre details unsheathed the wrongful behaviour of Vodafone. The CEO of the Australian Vodafone division knew that something provocative would happen and agreed to the proposal of an anonymous caller. He even agreed to take care of all arising costs and legal issues. Furthermore Vodafone was the sponsor of the participating Australian team, but his main competitor Telstra gave the arena its name. Apart from the legal difficulties that Vodafone had to face, the success of the campaign was arguable, since the match might have been influenced by the interruption and upset many fans. 8 17 18 Guerilla Marketing Portal Spiegel online 12 BACHELOR THESIS Anna Druing ? Katharina Fahrenholz GUERILLA MARKETING – OLD PHILOSOPHY WITH FUTURE? 3. 2. 5. New Media Weapons New technologies change our lives and they often make it easier due to mobile phones, internet, unlimited information, and shopping possibilities that enable customers to access the resources of the world with a click on the computer mouse.
Of course this also gives businesses the possibility to use the advantages that technology provides. Two very strong instruments that use the modern possibilities are described below: Viral Marketing and Guerilla Mobile. 3. 2. 6. Viral Marketing Viral Marketing is a very important weapon of Guerilla Marketing. The beginning of Viral Marketing in Germany is often linked to the computer game “Johnnie Walker Moorhuhn”, where the player gets to shoot grouses (German: “Moorhuhn”) in the Scottish highlands. The game was developed to promote the Scotch Whiskey brand Johnnie Walker in the German gastronomy sector.
In 1999 it was shown in some German bars and then offered as a free download on the internet. Unexpectedly the game became so popular that people of all ages actively played it. The clue which makes this example Viral Marketing is that the game players recommended “Moorhuhn” to friends by forwarding the link or by word-of-mouth. The game downloads had exponentially increased within a very short time and the brand name Johnnie Walker was spread free of charge to millions of individuals. 19 This example vividly shows how successful Viral Marketing can be.
The idea is to get an advertising message to as many contacts as possible and as fast as possible. This is realised by human multipliers who are animated to pass the message along for free. The challenge for a Viral Marketer is to build a motivation in a message for people to spread it. If that is successful, the snowball effect starts and the potential for the viral message’s exposure and influence is produced. The message rapidly spreads, similar to the way email jokes and software viruses are sent around to the online community. It has to be mentioned that Viral Marketing is not a computer virus, it is harmless.
Encouraging people to pass the message along to others for free is an art. A personalised message or a motivational prize are often successful tools. In any way, the campaigns should be smart and extraordinary, since a conventional advertisement might not be accepted and 19 Wikipedia 13 BACHELOR THESIS Anna Druing ? Katharina Fahrenholz GUERILLA MARKETING – OLD PHILOSOPHY WITH FUTURE? spread. Winning is often the usage of sex, humour, scandal, and provocation.
In the B2B sector downloadable White Papers are doing well. The Viral Marketing concept is not dependent on a certain media. Communication between two persons has always existed in various ways. Then the message often spread by word-ofmouth, but through the internet Viral Marketing has experienced a boom. The impact, coverage, and pace that this media offers today is astonishing. Especially Hotmail is often mentioned as the showcase for Viral Marketing. This free email service by Microsoft was one of the first to gain remarkably from Viral Marketing.
Hotmail’s brand awareness and market share increased rapidly, when they started to add a frank message to the footer of all E-Mails sent out by Hotmail users. For example : “Join the world’s largest free e-mail service with MSN Hotmail. http://www. hotmail. com“. 20 Hotmail users thus automatically became sales promoters for their e-mail service provider. From its start in 1996 to its 12 millionth user, hotmail only spend 500. 000 US-Dollar on advertising, while competitors spent 20 Million US-Dollar and did not nearly manage to attract that many customers.
Other successful viral formats are for instance Facebook applications and viral videos on YouTube. 3. 2. 7. Guerilla Mobile Not only the PC offers unlimited possibilities to marketers. Since the number of mobile phones exceeds the number of inhabitants in many countries, the cell phone is a permanent companion of prospects. Therefore it was only a matter of time until marketers took the opportunity to reach customers and prospects at any place at any time. The wireless connection provides the possibility to present marketing messages in different ways via SMS, MMS, Bluetooth, or Infrared. . 2. 8. Low Budget Weapons This Weapon refers to Guerilla Marketing for new, small, and medium-sized companies, who only possess a small marketing budget. Like Levinson already pointed out in the 1980’s that does not necessarily mean that those companies have a disadvantage compared to financially strong competitors. But since their capital is low, the top priority is to use it as efficiently as 20 http://www. viz. co. nz/viral? marketing. htm 14 BACHELOR THESIS Anna Druing ?
Katharina Fahrenholz GUERILLA MARKETING – OLD PHILOSOPHY WITH FUTURE? possible. Guerilla Marketing should put this into practice by focusing on the local culture with its geographical, sportive, social network, its rituals, needs, habits, norms, traditions, and values. Clever ideas appear through unconventional methods which are supposed to catch the attention of the target group. 3. 3. Guerilla Marketing in the Marketing Mix Guerilla Marketing changed over the years. In the past it was a business philosophy that influenced all aspects of the business equally.
Today Guerilla Marketing is often only used in the form of a campaign. Companies often operate according to their traditional marketing philosophy, but Guerilla Marketing for single campaigns is different. There the balance in the marketing mix shifts towards one of the 4 P’s. The figure 2 shows that 70% of the campaigns put their focus on promotion. The remaining 30% place their focus equally on price, place, and product. 21 Marketing Mix Promotion 70 % Price 10% Place 10% Product 10% Figure 2: Marketing Mix The following examples show campaigns where the focus is on one of the 4 P’s.
Here it is essential to outline that sometimes only one of these 10% of the Marketing Mix are designed according to the Guerilla Marketing principles. The remaining 90% can belong to a traditional Marketing approach. 21 Bieri; Handschin; Siegenthaler; Spycher 15 BACHELOR THESIS Anna Druing ? Katharina Fahrenholz GUERILLA MARKETING – OLD PHILOSOPHY WITH FUTURE? 3. 3. 1. Guerilla Promotion (70%) In most cases Guerilla Marketing appears in the form of promotion.
Even though Guerilla Marketing tries to be different than the traditional marketing strategies, it uses the same channels to bring the message across such as public relations, advertising, sales promotion, or direct mail as well as the specific instruments described before. Actually the possibilities do not have limits. The non-profit organization WMF supplies one of the numerous examples of Guerilla Marketing promotion with its slogan: “save paper – save the planet”. Figure 3: WMF Promotion22 By pulling the paper towel out of the box, the level of the overall paper towel pile decreases.
The user cannot only see the decreasing pile, but also the effects that the use of the paper towels has on the rain forests in South America. With this simple example WMF tries to redirect the attention of the user towards WMF’s interest to maintain the rain forests. 3. 3. 2. Guerilla Pricing (10%) The focus of Guerilla Marketing strategies can also be pricing. Even though we live in a world where prices play a big role within the purchase decision, only 10% of all Guerilla activities focus on price. It describes a new way to differentiate itself from the rest of the 22 http://images. oogle. com/imgres? imgurl=http://minus3. ch/blog/wpcontent/uploads/2007/10/mini_guerilla_marketing_2. jpg;imgrefurl=http://www. minus3. ch/ blog/;h=225;w=360;sz=116;hl=de;start=12;um=1;tbnid=g3DOMkCxNmw6nM:;tbnh=76;tbnw=121;prev=/images%3Fq%3Dguerilla%2Bm arketi ng%2Bmini%26um%3D1%26hl%3Dde%26lr%3D 16 BACHELOR THESIS Anna Druing ? Katharina Fahrenholz GUERILLA MARKETING – OLD PHILOSOPHY WITH FUTURE? competition. A competitive offer is still a success factor for some campaigns as the following witty idea shows.
Customers of the electronic retailer Media Markt were promised to get back their money if they bought TV’s before the Soccer European Championship in case that the German soccer team won the tournament. Many people took the opportunity and bought one or more TV’s. In the end Germany did not even get into the final round and the customers did not receive their money back. Media Markt was the winner. 3. 3. 3. Guerilla Distributing (Place 10%) The distribution of a product can also be a special experience for the customer. A good distribution can boost sales tremendously.
Even though books have a hard time to survive in competition with to other media, the famous Harry Potter series by J. K. Rowling showed that even books can make the day of retailers and delivery services. Especially young readers were waiting for the new book release and wanted to buy the book at the day of publication. Book shops, retailers, and delivery services in many countries offered customers to buy or to receive the book at midnight in order to be one of the first to own the book. A lot of fans even came in costumes to book stores to buy the first copies.
Others were willing to pay extra to get the book delivered to their homes at midnight. 17 BACHELOR THESIS Anna Druing ? Katharina Fahrenholz GUERILLA MARKETING – OLD PHILOSOPHY WITH FUTURE? 3. 3. 4. Guerilla Producting (10%) Also the packaging, the form, and the brand can be a vehicle for Guerilla Marketing. One example introduced Kellogg’s with its Drink ‘n Crunch cup shown in the picture below. Figure 4: Kellogs Drink n? Crunch23 The cup allows the customer to have cornflakes-to-go.
The one-person-portion in the cup only needs milk in addition to make it a snack that can be enjoyed not only at home. This makes the cornflakes an alternative to chocolate bars and other sweets. 3. 4. User Profile In the battle for customer attention small companies as well as Global Players want Guerilla Marketing to stand out from competitors in a cost-effective way. Thereby small companies focus on using a small budget, while big enterprises utilize Guerilla Marketing in combination with classical advertising strategies to make branded goods a real experience. Guerilla Marketing is a solution for companies of all sizes and all budgets.
The classical version of Guerilla Marketing that was mainly developed by Levinson is still usable for small and medium-sized companies that are looking for a philosophy that fits their financial limita 23 http://images. google. com/imgres? imgurl=http://www. frederiksamuel. com/blog/images/bananaj. jpg;imgrefurl=http://www. frederiksamuel. com/blog/category/p ackaging/page/2;h=462;w=450;sz=76;hl=de;start=43;um=1;tbnid=h64qrsAJSSAlKM:;tbnh=128;tbnw=125;prev=/images%3Fq%3Dguerilla%2Bpacka ging%26start%3D40%26ndsp%3D20%26um%3D1%26hl%3Dde%26lr%3D%26sa%3DN 8 BACHELOR THESIS Anna Druing ? Katharina Fahrenholz GUERILLA MARKETING – OLD PHILOSOPHY WITH FUTURE? tions and high desires. Little tricks and years of experience make a successful start for a company possible. On the other hand it is not only an alternative for smaller companies. Puma, Lycos, Vodafone, BMW: they all do it. Actually there is no size of company and no field of industry that does not try to use the advantages of Guerilla Marketing.
Even though the budgets of the companies that use Guerilla Marketing vary widely, they all find a way to get through to their customers. Furthermore low-budget activities can be extended by putting in more money than necessary, for example by placing advertisements in additional cities. Internationally the top 5 countries with the highest advertising expenditure are firstly the USA, then China, Japan, UK, and on the fifth position Germany. Over the last 10 years expenditures in those countries have all risen tremendously, in China for instance by 1218%, in the US by 53% and in Germany by 6%.
Guerilla and Viral Marketing concepts are mostly used in the US. In Germany 35% of the companies use unconventional advertising forms. The outcome of a Robert;Horst24 research was that 46% of the top 3000 Marketing Decision Makers in Germany have or will use alternative marketing forms in the future. It becomes clear, that they see alternative marketing forms as cost-effective means, since they do not want to invest much of their budget on such forms. One third is willing to spend 5% and only one fourth will spend 10% of their marketing funds.
The main difference between small and bigger firms, next to the size of their budget, is the way Guerilla Marketing is used. Global players and other established companies cannot inherit the philosophy of Guerillas one-to-one since the strategy is made for small companies and consequently addresses only a limited customer base. Some additional and personalized services cannot be offered by businesses that serve millions of clients. Consequently these enterprises only use Guerilla Marketing with all its facades for a specific time in the course of a campaign.
They use the main characteristics of Guerilla Marketing that are still important today. Creativity and flexibility, the surprise effect, and the unexpected are the main keywords here. A Guerilla Marketing campaign does not change the whole marketing strategy of a company. Larger companies do not have to opt for Guerilla Marketing like smaller companies some- 24 Robert;Horst Marketing GmbH 19 BACHELOR THESIS Anna Druing ? Katharina Fahrenholz GUERILLA MARKETING – OLD PHILOSOPHY WITH FUTURE? times have to.
They choose it as an additional way of promoting their products and it is used complimentary to the traditional marketing mix which works for the company. 3. 5. Case Study: Bionade So far the background, development, and usage of Guerilla Marketing have been outlined. To complement this progress, the case study will exemplify how Guerilla Marketing is implemented today. The company chosen is Bionade. They have used many facades of the strategy in the course of a campaign. Their example nicely illustrates how wit, creativity, and diversity can help a rising company to succeed in a saturated market.
In the following paragraphs it will be described why and how the Bionade Corporation implemented Guerilla Marketing to create brand awareness for their product: Bionade. To familiarise with the product, a company background will be given first. 3. 5. 1. Company Profile Bionade Corporation is a German company which sells soft drinks under the brand name “Bionade”. The product is currently available in 5 flavours. Bionade differentiates itself from common refreshments by being “the first and only non-alcoholic refreshment drink produced by a purely organic process. ”25 It is fermented like a beer, according to the German purity law