Antonio T Smith Jr. is a name you may have heard of before. The best-selling author and podcaster has a devout fanbase on all major social media platforms. Expanding his education initiative, The ATS Business University, he let us sit in on one of his online marketing classes.
Titled ‘Guerilla marketing is oxygen for the small business’; the class was about different types of stunts one can pull as a small business owner to bring positive attention to his or her business. Here are some of the key ideas that shifted my perspective.
Make a shirt with something cool on it.
Many businesses are using this the wrong way. That is why when Mr. Smith brought up shirts, I thought, ‘Oh God. No,’ but he gave a unique strategy. Why does the shirt just have to have your logo? It could, and it should be something people want to wear independently.
The name cannot be the main message; it should be attached to an interesting message. If I release a shirt with just my name, that’s not guerilla marketing. That is narcissism. But if my shirt says, ‘I am tired of bad journalism,’ and mentions my website, people will want to wear the shirt. And that will generate traffic for my online portfolio.
Write a book.
Antonio put forth the possibility of writing a book to get one’s name out there. But I don’t think that’s feasible for all small business owners. I think his personal story of becoming a millionaire after growing up homeless is interesting enough to make his book a bestseller, but he does not really understand how hard it is to write a successful book for an average business owner.
Still, I include this because, as a journalist, I can write a book, and for people who can, this is a great tip.
Follow Viral Trends.
This is a very interesting take. I honestly thought companies were setting trends but realized that 90% of viral marketing is just highjacking trends. And the end result is the same. So it does not make sense putting hundreds of hours into creating a trend when one can just highjack a trend as soon as it starts to go viral.
Corporations are too slow to move on trends. Small business owners can really hop on trends in the first minute without facing the same consequences as corporations. I agree with Antonio that small businesses can be bolder and more agile in this aspect.
Partner with a local business.
Partnering can be powerful; I know this first hand. In fact, I remember syndicating my content to different publications only to notice that they all started getting more visitors who all read my content.
It is only after Mr. Smith explained the idea of cross-pollination did I realize the importance of joint-ventures for small businesses. I would add, though, that you should partner with businesses whose audience is very likely to be interested in your products.
In summation, the millionaire marketing mentor Antonio T Smith has some really powerful content on his business university. You may not agree with everything he says, but you will definitely come out with a wealth of insights.