Guerilla PPC

In a world of ever-shorter attention spans and when the ad space is ever more polluted with “me too” messages, it’s hard to get a message out to lots of people at short notice and low cost.

One method is what I’m loosely calling “guerilla PPC” – something we’ve been trialling ourselves with interesting effects.

The principle runs thus:

  1. Take the day’s biggest news story
  2. See if anyone is running PPC against it already
  3. If not, fire up a quick and dirty campaign
  4. Try and tie it back to brand messages
  5. Take some exposure, some traffic and (perhaps) some links / coverage

For a direct example, Thomas Cook have used this method this week with an amusing skit on the Carlos Tevez situation (HT: Stu Bamforth).


  1. You can get uncontested presence on big volume terms at relatively low CPC levels
  2. You might get a little bit of positive buzz within the industry
  3. You associate your brand with humour and wit


  1. Might not fit with your existing brand messages
  2. Some news stories are just too risky to touch
  3. Response rates are likely to be pitiful unless backed up with landing pages/actions etc
  4. Must be repeated over time to get the necessary exposure to actually build a brand

Should you bother?

In the main, there is little actual tangible benefit, but a little skit can put the brand in front of tens of thousands of people for an actual cost of a couple of quid. It drips a brand message in front of them and every little helps when you’re in the establishment phase.

But perhaps most importantly of all, it gives you a little something to smile about on days full of horrible news.


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