Creative guerrilla marketing: how to use promotional items to market your brand

By February 8, 2016General

Guerrilla marketing is incredibly effective. So is promotional marketing. From USB sticks to branded golf clubs, promotional items are an integral part of businesses marketing plans across the globe.

Millions are given away each year at trade shows, conferences and meetings, making it a multi-million pound industry.

To see why, you only have to look around your own house: the chances are; you’ll have a Barclays Bank biro or an All Bar One box of matches somewhere.

Businesses invest in promotional marketing because it works.

Now that you’re sold on the importance of promotional marketing – an off-shoot of guerrilla marketing, here are some guidelines for choosing the right promotional product for your brand.

Connect your brand with each promotion

Almost any product can be turned into a promotional item, but make sure the item you choose is connected in some way with your brand. If you’re a tech company, think branded card readers or smart phone cases. Tape measures might be the perfect fit for an estate agent.

Choosing a product that reflects your industry can help build brand association in the mind of consumers.

Choose functional items

People keep promotional items that they can use. To successfully market your brand, your promotional item has to be of some use to your consumer.

Biros tend to accumulate in offices, and bottle openers in kitchens. If you have the budget, think about a bigger item that’s used frequently, like an umbrella or high-quality item of clothing. Choose a product that feels like a useful gift rather than a throw-away advertisement.

Make it stand out

Promotional items should be well designed, but should also be unique and interesting.  After all, guerrilla marketing needs to be memorable. What products would you keep around the house? What would you show to your friends?

Eye-catching and unique promotional products are more likely to stick around and be shown off, increasing the prominence of your brand – and the likelihood of new customers seeing it.

Consider your promotional item’s exposure

Along with being functional, tied to your brand and of high quality, your promotional item needs to have maximum exposure. Exposure is integral to guerrilla marketing. Think about how long it can be used. Avoid perishable items or fragile items that can break easily.

Also avoid seasonal items, as they may only be used a short amount of time.

The goal of using promotional items to market your brand is so that each piece can be seen — and that won’t happen if your promotional item is tucked away in a cabinet or drawer!

Hotcow is a non-traditional creative agency that specialises in experiential marketing that goes viral. Our campaigns generate buzz through crowd participation, PR and content sharing. Contact us on 0207 5030442 or email us on