7 Unconventional Marketing Tactics That Work

zoo bus

Why do you spend money on marketing? It’s to get visitors to your site, right?

If you think about it, getting visitors to your website is great, but what you are really doing is spending money to make more of it. From a business standpoint, it doesn’t make sense to spend money on marketing unless it helps you generate more revenue.

What are the best places to spend your marketing dollars? Maybe Google AdWords, SEO, or social media? Those are all great channels worth leveraging, but they are crowded.

So, where should you be spending your dollars? It’s on unconventional tactics because the ROI from them is typically higher.

Here are 7 unconventional marketing tactics that will help you make more money:

Write guest posts

You already know about guest-posting, but are you actually leveraging it? It works extremely well, and it isn’t competitive. It’s working so well for me that I am guest-posting roughly five times a week.

That’s right, not only am I posting on Quick Sprout three times a week, but I am guest-posting five times a week as well.

Why should you guest-post? No, not for SEO purposes. Do it to drive more business to yourself.

As long as you can write good content, it will be extremely easy for you to get your content published on authoritative sites. It doesn’t matter if you have guest-posted before or not. Sites like Forbes, Huffington Post and Entrepreneur Magazine are all looking for more high quality content because it helps them boost their traffic, which increases their ad revenue.

The way you can generate revenue through guest-posting is by writing on topics related to your business and naturally mentioning your company within your author bio and, possibly, within the post.

A good example of this strategy in use is Buffer. They guest-post multiple times a week, and it drives signups for their service.

If you are wondering how effective guest-posting is, I can tell you that each guest post I publish is worth roughly $4,139 in revenue. The revenue is collected in the form of leads and new customers. Of that $4,139, roughly $385 is generated in the first thirty days. The rest is collected over a two-year period.

For me, the key to successful guest-blogging is writing for authoritative sites as they tend to rank well on search engines. Beyond that, I blog on topics that are broad enough to capture a decent amount of search traffic yet still relevant to my business so that they can help generate revenue.

Throw lavish parties

Have you ever been to a party that is so much fun that you still remember how great it was? Or, better yet, you still discuss it with your friends?

We all have been to parties like that, but I bet you haven’t been to a party that had mermaids…

mermaid

fire breathers…

fire breathers

people walking on water…

bubble girl

and fireworks.

fireworks

An entrepreneur by the name of Dan Fleyshman is well-known for throwing parties like the one depicted above. He’ll spend anywhere from $25,000 to $100,000 on a party every three months and invite his friends and business colleagues to attend.

It may sound crazy to spend that much money on a party that only lasts five hours, but it helps him create a lot of goodwill. People want to do business with him, and the revenue that he generates indirectly from each event more than pays for the cost of the event.

It may sound ridiculous to you to throw an extravagant party, but if you truly go over the top, people will talk about it and want to attend it. This will cause people to try to associate themselves with your brand and your company, which will lead to more revenue.

Personal branding

Have you noticed that I spend a lot of time building up my personal brand? I monitor how many people search for my name each month through Google Trends.

google trends

Every month, I try to get more and more people to search for my name, which isn’t an easy thing to do.

Can you guess why I do this?

No, it’s not because I want to be famous. And I don’t do it to boost my ego either. I do it because my personal brand helps drive millions of dollars in revenue each year.

How so?

Well, chances are you first found out about me on Twitter, Facebook, or my blog. From there, you learned a bit more about me and my companies, and eventually, you tried out my products, which helped me generate revenue.

If you want to build a personal brand that helps generate income for your business, you need to focus on helping others. Consistently, give people advice and feedback for free. Indirectly, this will cause your business to grow.

You can do this through blogs, emails, conferences, or networking events.

Show off

This strategy won’t work well for everyone, but it can work for certain types of people and businesses.

One person who has a habit of showing off is Timothy Sykes. From pictures of his vacations…

vacation

to his fancy watches…

watches

and his sports cars,

lambo

Tim continually tries to show how wealthy he is and how great his lifestyle is. He even has Facebook status updates that tell you how much income he makes or how much he spends on taxes.

His online persona makes him seem like an obnoxious guy who thinks money is all that matters in this world. But if you get to know the real Tim Sykes, you will see that he is not like that at all. He is a family man, who spends time taking care of his parents, who loves helping people in need and who even donates a lot of his income to charitable causes. He just never shares that information with the world.

He only has this online persona because it helps him generate new students for his Trading Challenge program, which brings him millions of dollars.

instagram comments

As you can see from the image above, one person is already in communication with Tim’s employee Ryan and is on his way of becoming a paid student.

If you are in the business of helping other people succeed or in consulting, showing off may help you generate leads and income. You just have to be careful with this strategy as it can also backfire.

Create software…and give it away for free

That’s right, you should spend thousands of dollars on software and give it away for free. It might not sound reasonable, but it works extremely well.

Just look at Quick Sprout. Its homepage features a tool that helps you grow your traffic. In total, I’ve spent over $100,000 on that tool, but the traffic increase this tool helped generate resulted in more income than it cost me to build it.

Within the first four days of me launching the tool, 17,747 people ran 22,562 URLs through it. Since then, its popularity has been growing steadily.

The increase in traffic has lead to additional revenue as more people signed up for my premium membership package because of it.

In addition to that, I tested charging for additional features in the tool, and the test was very positive: you were willing to pay for additional analysis.

In the end, I decided not to charge for the features as my goal is not to use Quick Sprout for revenue – it is to help you out. But if I wanted to make money from Quick Sprout, it wouldn’t be hard for me to generate a few hundred grand a month in income.

Invoke curiosity through design

Have you noticed that many people these days are creating complex websites that go into vast detail about their products and services? I’ve been guilty of this myself with my personal site.

long design

As you can see, my design goes into great depths about the services I offer. For fun, I decided to invoke curiosity by creating a version that doesn’t go into much depth.

short design

Can you guess what the difference in the conversion rate was? The design that invoked curiosity resulted in 318% more leads. And the best part is the lead quality didn’t change.

Not only that, but the new version also drives 129% more direct traffic, meaning more people are now visiting the site.

If you want to grow your traffic and increase your conversion rate, try doing something unconventional with your design. Doing the opposite of what everyone else is doing in your space is a great way to generate some buzz, traffic, and revenue.

Work for free

The best thing I did for my career was to help out A-list web celebrities for free. When I did this, I didn’t have a well-known brand, and no one cared about who I was.

My strategy was simple. I emailed the well-known entrepreneurs and gave them free advice. In exchange, I asked them to tell their friends about me and refer business.

Not only did my revenue go up, but my reputation as a good online marketer improved as well.

If you are wondering how you can leverage this strategy for your business, you can just copy the steps I took.

For fun, I decided to add up all the income this tactic helped me generate. Can you guess how much revenue it brought? From the first deal to the last one, it helped generate $2,850,750. That’s not too shabby for sending out 46 emails.

Conclusion

If you are looking to grow your business, start thinking outside the box. The popular marketing tactics that you already know, such as Google AdWords, are great, but they aren’t always profitable. For this reason, you need to get used to trying new tactics that others haven’t used yet.

Test out some of the methods above. Some may work for your business, while others may not. You will just have to test and adapt different tactics to the needs of your business.

What are some other unconventional marketing tactics that work?

Comments

  1. Thanks for providing the posts. I just launched my new Bridging loans website for which i was looking to research some good marketing tactics that would really work my way. I will surely try these methods and will provide you a feedback too.

  2. Christina L :

    Thanks Neil, as a recent convert to your university, I am eternally grateful for the help both free and paid you provide. I shamelessly use your information to help my business, it is a massive help, and has made a real and lasting difference. Great post again. Very glad I found you and your site.

  3. Parties, hunh? I’m on board with that.

    Added bonus PR tip: If the party is truly over the top and a spectacle, you can invite your local news outlets to attend and maybe they’ll throw some free publicity your way – journalists like to party too – they’re some of the most under-appreciated bunch around.

  4. Wes Brodsky :

    Neil,

    Keep in mind, that most of these concepts are only possible if you’ve always established. “personal branding”.

    It will do you no good to throw parties without A-list guests, no good to “show off” unless you have a following, and will get no traction on “guest posts” unless you have cache that will be enticing to the publisher.

    Of course, there’s the proverbial “chicken-and-egg” issue of how to gain traction on personal branding without employing tactics like the above.

    A good stepping stone in bridging the gap is associating with people that already have a brand that can vouch for you and get your foot in the door.

  5. Rob McNelis :

    How about this one… Stop blogging! I’m trying it on my site and I’m still getting subscribers.

    Great post Neil! Love unconventional tactics.

    Rob

  6. Fakharuddin :

    Hello Sir,
    Thanks for the great post. Found some new points for Marketing and hope using those Tactics helps to grow more audience to my blog.

  7. Michael Bely :

    Hey Neil,

    That was the sexiest post I’ve seen on QuickSprout 😉

    Thanks the marketing tips and advice. Here is just one thing I’d especially underline in addition to them.

    One need to have a business (e.g. a selling) offer.

    Otherwise all the traffic generation/ brand establishing efforts may turn out pointless.

    It seems very obvious, but it seems to be a very wide-spread mistake among beginners.

  8. Tom @ Raise Your Graden :

    We have been doing this Buffalo gardening blog for not quite three months now. Your posts have really helped us prioritize our time since I have a full time job and my wife is busy with the kids at home. Thanks Neil!

  9. Matthew Scott K :

    As always Neil, your value exceeds expectations.

    Thanks for the seven tips outlined. I will be using a few of them, specifically, ‘work for free.’ I have always hesitated on this as my little voice yells out ‘how will you have time?’ ‘when will it come back?’

    Well, no longer. I will just move forward. Thank you!

  10. Love these marketing tactics. Fantastic post, Neil.

  11. Laura @ Raise Your Garden :

    I just lit up like the 4th of July when I read this post.

    Work for free. That’s what struck a chord with me the most out of all your suggestions.

    When you work for free and help someone with a problem they have, wow, bam, cowabunga, they want to help you back. That person then is personally invested in you, your success in theirs. When you are pulled up, likewise are they.

    Thanks for another epiphany.

  12. Tushar Thakur :

    Another great post Neil.

    I wonder how you manage your time in writing such long useful post and replying the comments. Hats off.

  13. Neil,

    How are getting on Entreprenuer, Forbes, and Huffington Post? I have tried to reach out to some of these editors and have heard nothing back? Have you made personal relationships or are you using content marketing platforms like OutBrain?

    Thanks!

    Daniel

  14. You don’t do things FOR free.
    You do things FREE.

    If you want help with grammar, which you obviously need, email me. We can set something up.

  15. Neal Taparia :

    Nice post, Neil (from fellow Neal).

    I noticed a theme in the post was the idea to give first, before you ask for something in return.

    If you have a valuable product, what’s the right balance of giving that for free without seem like your promoting it?

  16. Thanks for sharing! The offering things for free made me realize that it’s online version of gift exchange. You give people content in exchange for their attention (and opinions) and that’s what you start building and expanding your relationship on.

  17. Peter Kanayo :

    Rob, I can see you are one of those who are envious of people success. If you want to provide value- go ahead and tell people why that statement is wrong.

    As far as your approach goes I doubt Neil is going to reply that reply of yours.

    Decency matters. I am no English guru and perfect English will never and quote me never earn you that kind of money.

    I was looking to see if you have a site and I discovered you have none.

    So I rest my case.

  18. I’m trying to break into the business of consulting for the fitness industry – I’m thinking working for free is a good first step to build a resume. Thanks!

  19. Victoria Ipri :

    I don’t believe Neil’s advice is “work for free”. (Apologies to the English guru.) I think his advice is to freely give value to others without any expectation, and you will be rewarded. It’s the principle of reciprocity, and a building block of social media success.

    When I began my biz years ago as a total newbie, I literally worked “for free”, but in exchange for things that were valuable to me – recommendations, testimonials, and other items that would, at some later point, equal $$ in the bank.

    I believe this is Neil’s point. Don’t everybody run out there and work for no compensation! Another principle comes into play: Give your talent away for nothing, and people will assume it is worth nothing.

  20. 2 things:
    1) Most of these tips are for people who are already well established; almost fells like you are showing off
    2) Your comment replies are automated? How rediculous is that.

    • Kevin,
      1. I think these can work for anyone. It’s all about working on models of scale.
      2. Kevin, they aren’t automated. Thanks for your feedback 🙂

      Let me know if you need help with anything. Looking forward to hearing more from you!

  21. Iain Dooley :

    Hey Neil, do you personally write 8 articles per week?

    I would love to learn more about how you systemise content creation

  22. Sabih Ahmed :

    Great post, Neil. I am in a process of building my own website and these tips are definitely going to help me in building my business presence. Like you said, not all tactics will work for every business so one should analyze which of these could be effective. Thanks!

  23. Nazrul Islam :

    Hey Neil I am your regular visitor. Really an awesome and incredible writes you have written. Just something different tactics and it would works. People are now a days feel happy if they get something without any hassle !
    Yes…Focusing and Helping Others, Is now the perfect Branding for Someone (Person/Company),
    This will consistently grow ones Brand and creates incredible user feeds that people never thoughts !

  24. Prasenjeet Kumar :

    A very interesting article, Neil. I consider myself an Author Entrepreneur. I write and sell my books. Some of your tips seem very interesting to me. I’ ll try guest posting as you mentioned as one of the unconventional tactics.

    We authors are used to writing our books and spending a lot of energy and then giving away this for FREE. You seem to demonstrate the power of FREE.

  25. Chirag MIshra :

    Great post! Glad to know about your journey and suddenly I am feeling motivated after reading these. I am also an internet marketer and daily I read some posts and articles to find out “how to increase the visitors”. After reading these 7 Unconventional Marketing tactics I would say, it can be done. Thanks for sharing!

  26. Kristy Bernales :

    Nice post, Neil you’ve always come with great ideas. Where did you get that. Thanks for posting interesting & useful tactics.

  27. To be brutally honest… best post in a long time!
    I bet the pretty girl pictures a the beginning of your post kept many readers going till the end (great trick 😉

    Insanely practical tips to get more visitors, I’m going to tweet this post.

    Speaking of tweeting posts; I ran quicksprout.com through your free seo analysis tool and it shows under Social Media Impact the magical number of 0 tweets? That can’t be right.

  28. Great post! I’m starting to notice that some of the strategies that work best are those that are more difficult to implement.
    Unsurprisingly, fewer people will do guest posting. Too much effort writing that original article. Same goes for creating software. Or throwing a lavish party. Don’t even mention working for free! So nowadays, I feel especially encouraged when a strategy I’m implementing takes more effort e.g. creating an affiliate program that provides a number of promotional tools. Fewer people jump on the band wagon. But the payoff can be huge!

  29. Jasper Oldersom :

    I agree with you. Not enough people realize that helping others can actually benefit them. And you don’t have to throw an expensive party to do so. Sometimes the small things can create a lot of goodwill for your company.

    Let’s say you have a niche in quality headphones, and someone is ready to pay for a $250 dollar headphone, but it turns out he’s $5 short. You could either see a problem, or decide to help him out.

    Those $5 could make him an advocate for your company ánd a returning customer!

    Cheers Neil.

  30. Thanks for sharing this article. It is great information about these 7 unconventional marketing tactics that work. This is the most effective way to learn and help you in making money online. Read all the 7 marketing tactics and you will get a brilliant idea. I will share this information with my friends. They will certainly love to read your article. Very informative, I’ll definitely give these 5 stars.

  31. Hello neil , I read your post and thoughts but now its turning into influencer marketing and Organic search engine optimization turned into tactical marketing. Do you think such trend will lead industry on correct path?

  32. Neil,

    Good stuff except for the latent misogyny of the parties idea… I’m uncomfortable with the vocal support of the objectification of women.

    Other than that, clever post with clever ideas.

    Evan

  33. Codrut Turcanu :

    Hey Neil

    Quick q for you… on an interview project (I have also emailed YOU about it)

    With only $100 in your Paypal/bank account, what would you do in the next 90 days to launch a profitable Internet business? What niche would you tap? What would you sell or promote? What would you avoid? Why?

    thank you!

    • Codrut, I would try to make that money stretch as long as possible. Focus on all the right things that wont cost you money 🙂

  34. Wow, you’re new personal website design looks fantastic!

    Oh, and good post on unconventional marketing tactics I guess 🙂

  35. LOL, the throwing a party bit is one expensive idea.

  36. No words Neil, You always put the things very smartly. One second I thought, I came in any party blog. but these are awesome points. I loved your whole concept. but throwing a party may be some costly for business start up but throwing free advice and work may work wonders.

  37. William Kim :

    Neil, one question…

    When will I get my invite for your lavish party?! Great article.

  38. Nice Post Neil, Can I choose two niches like Online Marketing and Financial growth?

  39. HI Nail!

    Say some thing different. Your blog post is quite interesting. You could help 😛

  40. Great blog.. what kind of tools or software we can offer to visitors on our website or something different which they enjoy for packaging industry. I have website which sells all packaging products like boxes, rolls and sheets. Please advise.

  41. Alvin Clint :

    Hi Neil,

    About “Invoke curiosity through design”

    Just curious if you can see the data, on whether
    (a) visitor(s) did check out the other pages of your personal site before opting in?

    (b) visitor(s) right away opted in before going through the other pages of your personal site?

    If you can get both data (if ever possible), which of the two has the higher percentage?

    P.S. As always, great post!

    • Alvin, thanks for the additional tips 🙂

      • Alvin Clint :

        Hi Neil,

        Sure but that was actually more of a question since I’m curious if there’s a way to get those data and if so would like to know the result 🙂

  42. I’m having a déjà vu…

    Oh wait, Musonda already posted the exact same words in a reply above. What gives?

  43. Hello Neil,

    I am really learning a lot from you. I just joined the internet marketing band about 5 months ago. I always anticipate to receive your emails and I even created a folder for all your mails.

    Keep it up!

  44. With the right company some of these would work, but not for small businesses. Narcissism, for instance, would go down very badly for us. Flaunting fancy cars etc. There’s enough arrogance online as it is, no need to add to it further. Timothy Sykes – I’ll be avoiding him!

    The party idea’s a good one, though. Again, depending on the company.

  45. Hi Neil,

    Great article! I’m learning a lot from your posts.

  46. I like these marketing tactics, great post, thank you for sharing.

  47. Great post, i learn lots from your website, thank you Neil

  48. robux cheat codes :

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  49. I feel, making useful application for the customer plays great role in marketing; specially in case of B2B business.
    Followed by guest post and authority.

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