MK College | Alien Guerrilla Marketing Campaign

Devising and implementing a successful guerrilla marketing campaign is something of a tricky art to master. Not only do they take a large amount of event planning, they also need a core idea that will not only capture the public's imagination, but also draw them in and make them part of the campaign.

Milton Keynes College approached us when they wanted to create a marketing campaign that would boost application numbers and generate a real buzz with the public in Milton Keynes and the surrounding areas.  MK College had already done a lot of conventional marketing with limited success; but seeing our previous achievements with guerrilla marketing campaigns such as Aylesbury College's 'SwervBoi', they asked us to come up with something radically different to any advertising campaign they'd done before.  With a free reign to really let our imaginations run wild, we came up with a plan to introduce the people of Milton Keynes to Reko Tao Zion: An alien visitor from the future!

The idea for Reko was to have an instantly recognisable and different-looking individual roam popular areas of Milton Keynes leaving mysterious 'Business Cards' with a future date that had been laser-cut into a unique material.  We would also use a combination of makeup, bespoke clothing and viral websites (including 'fake' Facebook accounts) to really get Reko noticed and to get the general public trying to figure out what he was all about and if he really was an alien from the future.  We used an actor to play Reko Tao Zion and during every appearance in public, he would not say a word; heightening the mystery behind what he was all about.

After several appearances in & around Milton Keynes, and thanks to a phenomenal reaction from the public, Reko appeared on Milton Keynes' largest digital radio station MKFM to deliver his message about the future.  Shortly after his appearance, we staged a very public 'snatch & grab' by Men in Black-style agents in full view of the general public which simply added to the huge amount of interest Reko had gained on various social forums. If you're interested in any Guerilla Marketing services please visit our sister brand Garilla

The campaign ended with a big reveal on MKFM and via Milton Keynes College.  Despite this being a high-risk campaign, the reaction from the public was simply tremendous.  By the time the campaign ended, there was one Facebook community with over 500 members whilst Reko’s own page had over 350 followers; not to mention the various fan pages that also cropped up throughout Facebook with 1000’s of comments! Reko was also featured in prominent local papers and in YouTube conspiracy videos; one fan also created a delightfully odd animation about him - truly astonishing stuff.

The Time Traveller campaign has been a massive success for both MK College and us here at TFA.  The meticulous planning, organisation and implementation of the guerrilla campaign created a huge surge in public awareness for MK College and also led to the campaign going viral on Facebook and other social media channels. 

By the end of the campaign, the Reko Tao Zion microsite we created had over 400,000 hits in just over two weeks; Milton Keynes College were also inundated with enquiries and overcoming their shortfalls in applications.  This equated to over 500 additional applications to the college - on top of their original target of 2,300 - that were worth an additional £250,000 in additional funding from the British Government.  For an overall campaign investment of just £10,000, this is simply staggering and represents a fantastic return on their investment. 

We are also immensely proud to have created something that has been the talk of Milton Keynes for weeks and genuinely caught and enthralled the public's imagination.  It has also lead to an ongoing partnership with MK College to create and build a brand new website for 2014 and TFA being nominated for a prestigious Marketing Institue Award by The Drum magazine.  Simply outstanding!

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Project Tags

  • #guerrilla
  • #marketing
  • #campaign
  • #design
  • #promotion

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