Dynamic Marketing Communiqué

Create the MERRY: Check out how one social media platform engaged with Filipinos during Christmas 2021! [Thursdays: Gorillas of Guerrilla Marketing]

March 3, 2022

Miles Everson’s Business Builder Daily speaks to the heart of what great marketers, business leaders, and other professionals need to succeed in advertising, communications, managing their investments, career strategy, and more. 

A Note from Miles Everson:

If you’re looking for ways to engage with your target market and get them to talk about your brand, I suggest you do this one-of-a-kind marketing strategy: 

Guerrilla Marketing―a cost-effective marketing tactic that uses unconventional and inventive ideas to get exposure for a product or brand. 

As someone who’s been in the business and consulting industry for 30+ years now, I believe this is one of the best ways to effectively generate buzz and connect with your target audience. 

Allow me to share with you an example of an awesome guerrilla marketing strategy. 

Keep reading to know how a social media Christmas tree spread the holiday cheer in Bonifacio Global City, a financial and lifestyle district in Metro Manila, Philippines. 

Miles Everson
CEO, MBO Partners
Chairman of the Advisory Board, The I Institute

Gorillas of Guerrilla Marketing 

In a past “Gorillas of Guerrilla Marketing” article, we featured Heineken’s Social Christmas Tree in Singapore in 2011. 

There, we talked about how the beer company captured passersby’s attention, interacted with them via the social media tree, and created a twist to the “12 Days of Christmas” song. 

That’s such a refreshing, holiday-filled marketing campaign! 

10 years later… 

Did you know that one social media platform established a similar Christmas campaign in the Philippines? 

That platform is none other than…


TikTok is a video-focused social networking service owned by Chinese company ByteDance Ltd. The app hosts a variety of short-form user clips from various genres such as pranks, stunts, lifehacks, dances, food, travel, and other types of entertainment. 

As of 2021, TikTok has around 1 billion active users per month. 

Spreading the Holiday Cheer in Bonifacio Global City (BGC) in Taguig City, Metro Manila

During the Christmas season of 2021, a time when the Philippine government loosened its COVID-19 restrictions in the country, a lot of Filipinos went out to go to shopping malls and parks to relax, have fun, and bond with their loved ones. 

Several tourist attractions welcomed these visitors by creating their own versions of Christmas Villages, complete with colorful lights and other iconic elements of the holiday. 

As a popular financial and lifestyle district in Taguig City, BGC records an average foot traffic of 140,000 daily amid the pandemic. During Christmas 2021, it reached an average foot traffic of 200,000 daily. 

So… what did TikTok do to share the holiday vibes with those who visited the area? 

It created a guerrilla marketing campaign called, TikTok Tree! 

Similar to Heineken’s Social Christmas Tree, TikTok’s campaign team set up a giant Christmas tree made up of LED TV screens. 

The brand activation brought light to the city by continuously flashing exciting and fun holiday content that featured food, dances, fitness, gaming, and more. 

To promote the campaign, TikTok posted about the tree on its official Twitter account and invited the public to visit its huge Christmas setup in BGC. Those who went there took group photos with their companions and enjoyed the videos shown on the TikTok Tree. 

… and that’s not all that there was to the campaign! 

Apart from enjoying the videos created by content creators, visitors also had the opportunity to make their personal TikTok videos played on the digital Christmas tree. All they had to do was shoot their own holiday-themed posts using the different installations in the area and upload it with the hashtag, #TikTokTree

A lot of people took their chance to get featured on the holiday attraction alongside popular content creators. 

The TikTok Tree continued spreading the holiday cheer in BGC from December 21, 2021 to December 31, 2021. 

Was TikTok’s “TikTok Tree” guerrilla marketing campaign effective? 

Many people enjoyed the social media platform’s holiday-themed campaign. They even joined TikTok’s online Christmas party, which was conducted to celebrate the season and express gratitude to active users. 

The online celebration included performances by various Filipino artists such as SB19, Maris Racal, Matthiaos, I Belong to the Zoo, and Zion Aguirre. Those who joined the virtual Christmas party also had the chance to win prizes from TikTok’s “Mystery Boxes.” 

Here are the results of the social media platform’s Christmas guerrilla marketing campaign: 

  • TikTok’s Twitter post about the digital Christmas tree garnered 10,000+ likes and 500 retweets. These were recorded after the duration of the campaign. 
  • The hashtag, #TikTokTree, trended on Twitter for a week―from December 24, 2021 to December 31, 2021. 
  • Over 200,000 people interacted with the TikTok Tree and participated in the online Christmas party. 
  • The guerrilla marketing strategy was featured in articles from various media companies in the Philippines such as The Manila Bulletin, Interaksyon, Buzzsetter.com, Village Pipol, Underoneceiling.com, and more. 

Congratulations and thank you for contributing to a happy Christmas in 2021, TikTok! 

While the social media platform’s digital Christmas tree is not entirely new, what makes it unique is Filipinos’ enthusiasm to see their videos or posts aired in public. 

According to TikTok’s report on its 2022 audience reach, the Philippines is the 8th biggest user of the app. With 33 million Filipinos using TikTok, it was easy for them to participate in the holiday-themed campaign. 

That’s what TikTok took advantage of in 2021! It knew a lot of Filipinos are excited for the holidays and so to make things more exciting, it created the TikTok Tree alongside other installations in BGC―something both locals and tourists would love. 

This shows that having an in-depth understanding of your target market is important, especially in creating guerrilla marketing tactics that require a big budget. Knowing your customers and prospects not only helps ensure your efforts and resources don’t go to waste, but also lets you appeal to and engage with them. 

We hope TikTok’s Christmas-themed marketing strategy inspires you to make your own exciting and vibrant campaigns too! 

Remember: With a properly executed fun idea that’s tied to a season or a country’s culture, you’ll connect with your target audience and leave a lasting, positive impression on them. 

(This article is from The Business Builder Daily, a newsletter by The I Institute in collaboration with MBO Partners.) 

About The Dynamic Marketing Communiqué’s
“Thursdays: Gorillas of Guerrilla Marketing”

Jay Conrad Levinson (1984) said that Guerrilla Marketing “works because it’s simple to appreciate, easy to execute, and inexpensive.”

Guerrilla 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.

Guerrilla 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 about making a big impression and making that impression last a long time (if not forever).

Guerrilla Marketing can be 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 Thursday, 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 guerrilla campaign. You do not need a big budget to be successful. You just need creativity and a good imagination.

Hope you’ve found this week’s guerrilla marketing insight interesting and helpful.

Stay tuned for next Thursday’s Gorillas of Guerrilla Marketing!


Kyle Yu
Head of Marketing
Valens Dynamic Marketing Capabilities
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