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Sure, advertising is easy if you’re Pepsi or Apple, but what if you don’t have millions of dollars to throw at TV and print ads? Any business owner out there looking to cut their marketing budget should look no further than Guerrilla Marketing for FREE – Dozens of No-Cost Tactics to Promote Your Business and Energize Your Profits by Jay Conrad Levinson.

We’ve all heard examples of businesses that spend nothing on marketing and yet never seem to be lacking in customers (Krispy Kreme Doughnuts comes to mind), but how do they do it? On the first page of the book Levinson lets you know that it is possible to grow a business without spending a dollar on marketing, but that it takes a lot of energy and time. Each of the simple tactics the book discusses (there are 100) are deceptively simple and, according to Levinson, have proven track records.

All that you need to get started is a telephone, a computer, a printer, business cards, and access to the internet. After that you will not spend another dollar. Techniques range from the relatively obvious, such as “write a marketing plan” and “have a website”, to not-so-obvious things such as “establish a referral program” and “get involved in your community.”

Many of the tactics involve giving to receive. In addition to doing volunteer work in your community, Levinson suggests joining local networking groups, giving away your product for free to non-profit organizations and schools, and doing free presentations on your area of expertise to local organizations. Levinson’s tactics will not just help improve your bottom line, they’ll help you become a more altruistic entrepreneur.

If there’s one downside to the book, it’s that some of the techniques involving computers are outdated. For example, Levinson suggests advertising on free online classified sites. That may have worked years ago, but these days those sites are covered in spam and I doubt that any business would gain anything from listing on them. The book was written in 2003, so most of the techniques are still pretty valuable, but there’s just a few that stand out as infeasible in 2006.

When reading Guerrilla Marketing for FREE by Jay Conrad Levinson, I found myself constantly putting it down and jotting down ideas that could help supercharge my business. Levinson truly invokes your creative juices. And the best part is that all of the techniques cost you NOTHING. This is a no-brainer purchase for all entrepreneurs and small business owners.

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