How to use low-cost guerrilla marketing to push your indie game

Training pigeons encouraged but not required

How to use low-cost guerrilla marketing to push your indie game

"All you need to get your game in front of 9.2 million people is a pigeon."

So said Thomas Reisenegger, PR Manager at ICO Partners, during a talk at Develop:Brighton 2016 on how to market your game with a small budget through guerrilla marketing.

He defined guerrilla marketing as "low-cost unconventional marketing tactics", although he did note that you still need to hit the standard "news beats" alongside it.

Punching bears

As to why you should use guerrilla marketing, Reisenegger pointed out that it introduces a new news beat, costs less than regular advertising, and reaches a different audience than usual marketing strategies.

He used Punch Club as an example of a good guerrilla marketing technique, which required players to "play" the game on Twitch in order for them to release it, before writing an article on Polygon that suggested the developer did it all without the press.

Nice nonsense from Alphabear

Another example was Alphabear's use of nonsense phrases implementing words players made in the game, and allowed players to tweet these results, which they did in droves.

Grey areas

But Reisenegger warned that guerrilla marketing "does have risks", including the fact that these tactics may not be 100% legal, and may generate bad press if it goes wrong.

Though, while he offered numerous examples of bad PR stunts, Reisenegger pointed out that "the worst guerrilla marketing is the one you didn't do", and so you should at least try even a bad idea.

When it comes to thinking up ideas, Reisenegger recommended taking inspiration from other industries and businesses, as well as talking your ideas through with people, and not forcing yourself to come up with ideas.

As well as this, he said that the idea has to fit your game, as well as being a novel idea, as well as evoking some kind of strong emotion from the audience.


Ric is the Editor of, having started out as a Staff Writer on the site back in 2015. He received an honourable mention in both the MCV and Develop 30 Under 30 lists in 2016 and refuses to let anyone forget about it.