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Unusual Tips and Tricks for Small Business Marketing

Ethan Leonard
Categories: Small Business Marketing
Oct 16, 2023


In today's fast-paced and highly competitive business landscape, there's a lot of talk about "scaling up" and "going big" as quickly as possible. Conventional wisdom often propagates the mantra: "Go big or go home." But let's pause for a moment to appreciate the power of 'small.' Yes, you read that right—small is sometimes the new 'big,' especially when it comes to small business marketing. The good news is that your strategies don't have to be colossal or grandiose to be effective. In fact, it’s often the simple, unusual, and even quirky strategies that yield the most impressive results.

Why Small Business Marketing Matters

Before delving into unconventional tips and tricks that can give your small business a significant edge, it's crucial to understand why marketing is indispensable for small businesses in the first place. If you're a small business owner, you might think that marketing is just for big corporations with deep pockets. However, this notion couldn't be further from the truth. Here’s why:

1. Visibility

The first step in any business's growth trajectory is gaining visibility. It doesn't matter if you have the most groundbreaking product or service; if people don't know you exist, your business will struggle to survive. Effective marketing ensures that your business stands out and gains the visibility it needs to attract a steady flow of customers. Whether through digital channels like social media and SEO or traditional methods like print ads and word of mouth, visibility is the cornerstone of success.

2. Customer Retention

It’s an oft-repeated truism that retaining an existing customer is easier and more cost-effective than acquiring a new one. But customer retention isn’t just about keeping people coming back; it’s about transforming one-time buyers into loyal advocates for your brand. Good marketing helps in not only customer retention but also in encouraging repeat business. A simple follow-up email or a loyalty rewards program can work wonders in this area.

3. Branding

Branding is more than just a logo or a catchy slogan; it’s the emotional and psychological relationship you establish with your customers. Effective marketing creates a consistent brand image that evokes trust, credibility, and a sense of familiarity among potential customers. A strong brand acts as a beacon that guides consumers in a crowded marketplace.

4. Competitive Edge

In today’s saturated market, standing out is more challenging than ever. But through well-thought-out and effective marketing strategies, you can give your small business a significant competitive edge. By emphasizing your unique value proposition, you distinguish your business from competitors and become the go-to choice for your target audience.

Unusual Tips and Tricks

Now that we've explored the foundational reasons for why marketing is so crucial for small businesses, let’s dig into some out-of-the-box tips and tricks to take your marketing game to the next level.

1. Guerrilla Marketing

Think of guerrilla marketing as the David facing the Goliath of big advertising budgets. This unconventional strategy thrives on creativity, imagination, and the element of surprise. Imagine using sidewalk chalk to draw a treasure map that leads people to your shop, or creating a flash mob in a public square to draw attention to a cause your business supports. The primary investment here is creativity, not dollars.

2. Leverage Local Partnerships

One man's trash is another man's treasure. Partner with non-competing local businesses to create symbiotic promotional opportunities. If you own a gym, consider teaming up with a local health food store to offer cross-promotions. Customers who sign up for a gym membership could get a discount on health foods and vice versa.

3. Create “How Not To” Content

When it comes to content marketing, everyone seems to be creating "how-to" guides. Why not take a different route? A “how not to” guide can be both educational and entertaining. If you're a financial consultant, consider creating content like “How Not to Blow Your Retirement Savings” as a cautionary tale that can capture your audience’s attention.

4. Host a Meme Contest

We all know memes are highly shareable and relatable. Why not capitalize on this cultural phenomenon by hosting a meme contest? Ask your followers to create memes related to your product or industry and offer a prize for the best one. This creates engagement, spreads awareness, and injects some fun into your marketing strategy.

5. Upside-Down Marketing

This strategy involves turning the tables on traditional marketing norms. Instead of waiting for unhappy customers to come to you, why not reach out to them first? Look for negative reviews or complaints about your competitors and offer those disgruntled customers a better alternative. It's bold but can be remarkably effective if executed well.


The marketing world often leads us to believe that 'bigger is better,' that you need to spend enormous amounts of money and deploy elaborate strategies to succeed. However, as we've shown throughout this post, small businesses have a unique arsenal of tactics at their disposal that can be both cost-effective and extraordinarily impactful. Employing a well-thought-out marketing strategy is not just an option but a necessity for small businesses aiming to carve out a niche in today's competitive environment.

The power of small business marketing lies in its ability to be agile, hyper-focused, and deeply connected to the community. With the right approach, a small business can actually turn its size into its biggest asset. Unconventional marketing strategies like guerrilla marketing, leveraging local partnerships, and upside-down marketing are perfect examples of how small businesses can think outside the box to achieve impressive results.

Remember, marketing is not a one-off event but a long-term strategy. It is an ongoing process of building relationships with customers, understanding their needs, and adapting your products or services accordingly. Your business should aim to not only attract new customers but also to transform them into loyal advocates who will spread the word about your brand voluntarily.

In a world that is increasingly dominated by big corporations, your small business can still stand out by showing that you care, by being unique, and by offering value in a way that no one else can. Don't underestimate the power of human connection and the impact of community engagement. By forming genuine relationships with your customers, you're not just selling a product or service; you're creating an experience and a sense of belonging.

To cap it off, if you're overwhelmed by the ever-changing landscape of digital marketing, remember that you're not alone. Many small business owners are in the same boat. But also remember that help is available. Whether it's website design, development, or crafting a tailor-made marketing strategy, experts are out there who can guide you through the maze of modern-day marketing.

So, are you ready to take your small business marketing to unimaginable heights? As you ponder over implementing these unusual yet incredibly effective tips and tricks, know that the sky is the limit when it comes to your business’s potential.