A mysterious red-headed woman hands you a card. Would you take it? How consumer curiosity can make you millions. [Gorillas of Guerilla Marketing]
It was a normal day in the streets of Toronto, Canada.
March 1, 2018.
Yonge-Dundas Square has always had heavy foot traffic. It was considered a central area, and it was near one of the major cinemas, so a lot of people were always around.
It seemed like a regular day, until it wasn’t.
Nobody expected what was going to happen next.
A beautiful yet very mysterious red-head dressed in all black entered Yonge-Dundas Square and started handing people business cards with a kiss mark.
People were confused; they didn’t know what was happening.
Out of nowhere, more red-headed women wearing the same black outfit started to hand out the same kiss-marked business cards.
Strange and mysterious…
Those who received a card quickly looked at what was written on them.
Red Sparrow Movie Premiere
+ All the showtimes in the nearest movie theatre
A gimmick well-played.
This stunt definitely got everyone’s attention and 100% made a buzz on the streets and online!
Twentieth Century Fox Canada worked with Zenith Media and Eat It Up Media to set up this genius guerilla marketing campaign.
The campaign was to promote the movie Red Sparrow, starring Jennifer Lawrence, an action-thriller that revolves around a former ballerina turned Russian spy turned double agent.
They hired “Sparrows”—20 models to walk around downtown Toronto dressed up like Jennifer Lawrence’s character, in an all black outfit, with a red wig on and red lipstick.
Their goal was to promote the movie and appeal to a wide target market of heavy movie-goers (demographic: 18 to 49 years old for both genders).
“The whole element of mystery is very important to the film. We have our radio, television, digital, out of home, all the traditional media. But this is the cherry on top that we really think was missing. It helps make it a little more slick, a little more interesting to the general public.” – Costas Andreopoulos, VP of Marketing, Twentieth Century Fox Canada
“The notion of mystery can be difficult to bring to life in the flesh, but we think this activation really hits it home.” – Ivan Lee, Senior Account Executive, Zenith Media
In reviewing the numbers…
- Cost of Production (estimate): $69 million US
- Opening Weekend in US Alone: More than $16.8 million US
- Gross Box Office Sales in US Alone: More than $46.8 million US
- Total Gross Box Office Sales Worldwide: More than $151.5 million US
…this marketing stunt was indeed effective.
Leading brands (and even the biggest film companies) use guerilla marketing to induce shock and create a lasting impression on their target audience without having to spend massive amounts of money.
It looks easy BUT it takes a certain level of creativity and skill to be effective. This is not just something you can easily do that’s 100% successful 100% of the time. It has to be planned out well and executed properly.
Guerilla marketing helps businesses generate an intense amount of buzz among consumers while remaining profitable.
It could benefit your business or marketing projects—you could go viral, you can build partnerships, it’s great for low budgets, and it will make your campaign memorable.
The question remains.
If a mysterious red-headed woman walks over to you, says nothing, and simply hands you a business card, would you take it?
“Fridays: Gorillas of Guerilla Marketing”
Jay Conrad Levinson (1984) said that Guerilla Marketing “works because it’s simple to appreciate, easy to execute, and inexpensive.”
Guerilla Marketing is unconventional.
Looking beyond the traditional ways of advertising, marketers and advertisers need to spice things up in order for their brand to have campaigns that not only make an impact but also stick to their target market’s mind.
Guerilla Marketing usually aims to have direct contact with consumers.
This type of direct contact should spark an emotional reaction that leads to consumers effectively remembering the brand.
It’s making a big impression and making that impression last a long time (if not forever).
Guerilla Marketing is inexpensive.
The effect of this is being able to create a buzz around the brand, and the strategy used to market it. Almost everything is passed around through word-of-mouth.
Word-of-mouth is one of the greatest outcomes and it usually doesn’t cost anything.
This is every business or brand’s dream!
Every Friday, we publish tips, examples, and other useful content on unconventional ways of marketing and promotion.
Learn more about how to grab your target market’s attention and make an amazing first and lasting impression without having to spend a lot of money.
Businesses don’t really need to spend much for a guerilla campaign. You don’t need a big budget to be successful. You just need creativity and a good imagination.
Hope you’ve found this week’s guerilla marketing insight interesting and helpful.
Stay tuned for next Friday’s Gorillas of Guerilla!
Kyle Yu and Joel Litman
Head of Marketing & President and CEO
Valens Dynamic Marketing Capabilities
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This content is used with permission from The I Institute and The Business Builder Daily.