Hitting the streets: 6 killer examples of guerrilla street marketing

Published on 12 September 2017

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Nike running bench guerrilla marketing campaign

Guerrilla marketing works because it’s easy to understand, easy to implement and usually really cheap. But getting it right and expecting it to go viral takes real skill – an no little luck. Take a look at our collection of guerrilla street marketing examples, where promotions costing no more than a few quid can have a big effect on the consumers…

1. “It’s” red balloons

IT movie guerrilla marketing campaign

A crafty guerrilla marketing campaign for horror movie It has been met with both delight and horror on social media, with users saying it was “awesomely creepy”.

Last week, a number of red balloons appeared attached to drainage grates around Sydney, accompanied by a stencilled chalk note saying, “It is closer than you think”.

Social media users quickly cottoned on to the guerrilla marketing stunt for the movie adaptation of Stephen King’s famous It novel, involving Pennywise the clown, who is often seen holding a red balloon. A number of murals were also painted around Sydney featuring artist’s impressions of Pennywise’s face. An undeniably budget-conscious marketing campaign which garnered considerable social media attention.

[credit: Mr Glasses Agency]

2. Folgers Coffee steaming manholes

Folgers Coffee steaming manholes guerrilla marketing campaign

Created by Saatchi & Saatchi, Folgers Coffee created a creative guerrilla marketing campaign by covering manholes in New York with images of a top of a cup of coffee. When the steam rose up from the sewers below, it appeared that a fresh cup of coffee was steaming up. Unfortunately, according to passers-by, the ads had the right look, but they didn’t have the right smell. The “unjava-like aroma wafting through the steam holes” smelled like the sewer from which it emanated, the New York Post gently pointed out. Oops.

3. IKEA’s bus stop sofas

IKEA bus stop sofa guerrilla marketing campaign

Waiting for a bus is a pleasure in Sydney and Perth thanks to IKEA. The Swedish retailer has marked the launch of its 2018 catalogue with a guerrilla street campaign collaboration with Adshel, placing full size sofas and cabinets in bus stops across the Australian cities.

Following similar successful installations in Paris and Istanbul, the full size ‘street furniture’ living rooms appeared on Enmore Road in Sydney’s Newtown and St George’s Terrace in Perth. IKEA representatives handed commuters copies of the IKEA catalogue and gave away Opal and Smart Rider cards.

4. Nike’s running bench guerrilla marketing

Nike running benches guerrilla marketing campaign

Nike ads and activations have never failed in providing a motivational jolt of energy, and their New York bench guerrilla campaign was no exception. Real benches were set up in parks with the swoosh logo and “RUN” on the seatback, while the seating panel has been removed because … well, you can’t run if you’re sitting. Simple, effective, and with a loud and clear message.

5. Jeep car-parking space stunt

Jeep parking spaces guerrilla marketing campaign

This is one of our favourite guerrilla campaigns for cars because it is so simple and cheap, but so effective. Across Copenhagen, Jeep put car parking spaces in areas normally considered to be no-parking zones, to underline the vehicles durability. Though the campaign was short-lived – just a few weeks – and used only social media to share the story, it was wildly successful and generated considerable media coverage and social shares.

6. Ballet classes

Ballet classes guerrilla marketing campaign

Something so simple to finish, and without an agency in sight – a self-promotional poster for ballet classes posted on street lights, with the phone number tags bent to look like a tutu. Sometimes less is more…