Guerrilla marketing for Uni quidditch
What is guerrilla marketing?
“Guerrilla marketing is an advertisement strategy in which a company uses surprise and/or unconventional interactions in order to promote a product or service.” – Wikipedia.
We all know that recruitment this year will be hard. Not only have we had a year were recruiting players have been incredibly difficult due to restrictions, but we are now going to enter possibly the busiest fresher’s week that any of us have seen and with almost every sport and society jostling for attention of new members.
So how can you get a leg up and stand out? I wouldn’t discourage the usual rout of attending fresher’s fairs, handing out flyers and holding taster sessions. For many teams, this has been a staple of teams from the start. But this year it may take just that bit more effort to get your club noticed. That’s where guerrilla marketing comes in.
–Play in visible areas.
Playing in a space that is visible to freshers or where there is a high volume of student traffic is a great way to build visibility around your campus. Full games or smaller skirmishes (if you don’t have a lot of space) work just as well to attract attention, the main thing is to get at least 3 of your hoops up, people will know what the game is.
If possible, play as close to the fresher’s halls of residence as you can over fresher’s week and for some time afterwards, this will help to normalise the sport to new players and also by being close to the halls, allows freshers who may be interested in having a little try the chance to go to their flat to get their trainers on.
Remember to be friendly, talk to people who look interested and invite people to have a play with you. These shouldn’t be the full style trainings of the team or taster sessions, these “demos” should just be fun and active playing half or full pitch games.
(Shout out to Chester Centurions who do a great job at this)
-Signage at Training
You will often see, if you practice in a public place, people watching you or talking about what you are doing. Often the same thing will be heard by all teams “are they playing quidditch?”. It’s difficult to know how truly interested a passer-by is and can be awkward to approach them to make the first move to pull them in. A simple fix is to make a sign.
Making a simple sign to let people know that “yes, it is quidditch”, and that people are welcome to come and try it. You can add on a little detail about how the game works to help answer some basic questions and also remember to add the teams contact and social details.
An extra touch is to paperclip flyers to the sign so passers-by can take one to help them find you later.
-Strategically place flyers and posters
Flyers aren’t just for awkwardly handing out to freshers passing by your stall at fresher’s fair. Think carefully about how you use your flyers, they can be one of the more expensive marketing options for team, so you don’t want to waste them.
Think about placing flyers and posters in places that students are going to frequent. Like the SU bar, Uni reception areas and waiting rooms or even pubs/shops/bars that your team spends time at. If you ask staff, they will often be more than happy for you to put a few flyers on the tables or a poster up in a designated area.
Don’t just do this once. Doing this a couple of times a semester is a good way to keep your recruitment effort rolling while the new students become more settled. Push your luck with where you place your flyers, but be courteous to the venue and staff when doing it, if you’re polite and don’t overdo it, they are more likely to support you.
Pro tip, a simple way to get your poster noticed is to hang it upside down. People’s eyes will naturally be drawn to it and it becomes a talking point as people wonder if it was a mistake.
Socials and Events
-Running events for other societies
There can be hundreds of societies and clubs at your university, all trying to find fun and creative activities to keep their freshers entertained and active. This can be a perfect “in” for you and your club to get noticed by a wide range of students.
Try and find clubs that have a similar demographic to your player base or share interests that link into quidditch. In the past, I’ve found that drama societies, harry potter societies, gaming societies and LGBTQ+ societies are often having a good overlap of freshers who would be interested in trying quidditch. Try reaching out to these societies to see if they would be interested in you running a freshers/team building event.
By creating a simple and fun taster session style event, you can use the opportunity of to introduce quidditch to new players in a relaxed setting while they try it with friends. Don’t take the sessions too seriously, the main thing is to facilitate the society’s members having fun, but always make sure that they all know that there is a university quidditch team that they are welcome to come to. Coming to have a laugh with some friends will actorly do wonders for how individuals, who may never have considered trying the sport originally, view quidditch.
If you would like some ideas on how to run a fun activity day for other societies, feel free to message the Olympians QC and we will do what we can to help. We will also be releasing our own take on an activity day event, soon.
You don’t always have to keep with quidditch to advertise your quidditch club. There are a large variety of events you can hold to attract attention to your club. SU bars will often allow clubs to host charity events, such as quiz nights.
Charity events can be a great pull for a wide range of people to come and socialise. Not only will you get your name out there and promote your club, you’ll also be able to raise a bit of cash for a good cause.
The best way to market quidditch is to talk to people and make friends. Join societies that interests you and while enjoying yourself you will naturally find people who are open to trying out quidditch with you.