Guerilla marketing

We’ve heard it time and time again: How do I compete against the 800 pound gorillas of the industry? If they are continuously advertising on TV and are easily found in online searches, how do I get a customer to choose my security company over theirs?

We say have faith and put your trust into the purple cow. Now lets mooove on to some ideas.

Something you have over your national competitors is that you are local and know your city better than any of the giants. So when it comes to your messaging, touch on the fact you grew up there and care about the people in your community. Use local landmarks and local lingo in your creative material. For example, Chicagoans don’t call their city Chicago; they call it Chicagoland. By doing so you will gain interest over another security company that only cares about one thing — adding to their RMR.

Besides having the home field advantage, here are some “out-of-the-octagon” ideas that will help give you an edge over those gorillas of the industry:

Ride their coattails. The largest security companies do a great job of advertising, so naturally there will be some local searches for them around your area. For many of our clients we created a PPC campaign built around the national companies. For example, if your security company is located in the greater Los Angeles area we would purchase local keywords, such as national company name first, then each city, such as Pasadena, Altadena, Alhambra, etc. When a potential customer types in these keywords, your ad shows up on top of the national brands. Your ad should contain the home field verbiage as described above.

Use guerrilla marketing. Guerrilla marketing is a fancy word for “being different.” We typically throw out ideas to our clients about what can we do that will have an impact, what would make someone remember your company? One idea we are currently beta testing is advertising on moving boxes. We got the idea when a client told us he had received a lead from a moving company and the light bulb went off. Why not create free moving boxes to give away to people who are moving into a new home with a message from your company. Picture the last time you moved. You spent all day packing and moving into your new home only to have tons of boxes just sitting around your home. How long did it take to unpack them — days, weeks, months? Now imagine your company’s ad on every single one of those boxes. That’s guerrilla marketing at its best. Should you use this idea, send us an email about how it worked for you.

If you can’t beat ‘em join ‘em. This idea came from an existing client. When you’re canvassing or speaking with a potential customer on the phone, ask them “Did you see our commercial where you can control your home from your mobile device?” Chances are they will say yes 95 percent of the time. That’s because more than likely they saw a TV commercial, but most of the time they don’t remember the name of the actual company. What this does is open up the dialogue to connect with the potential customer about the great automation features your security system has. This idea actually works; we’ve seen it firsthand.

Form alliances. What businessperson in their right mind would turn down the opportunity to do practically nothing to generate more income? We recently have been creating campaigns that reach out to other companies that already have their foot in the door to form an alliance or join an affiliate program. These are HVAC companies, plumbers, moving companies, cabinet installers, pool cleaners, and more. Some of these existing companies have hundreds or even thousands of accounts they frequently visit. Reach out to meet on the possibility to help each other out. You would be amazed how quickly you will start to see results by creating a strategy to soft sell their existing clients to use you as their “preferred partner” to install their security.

Don’t take our word for these out-of-the-octagon ideas; try them for yourselves and see what happens. If you have an idea, try it out and measure it. Some of it is bound to work!


David Morgan and Alex Chavez are co-founders of Security Dealer Marketing, a full-service marketing agency for the security industry, servicing dealers, integrators, manufacturers and other industry professionals. Visit Security Dealer Marketing at