The World’s Best Guerilla Marketer
By Daniel Murray
|Ryan Reynolds is the best guerrilla Marketer on the planet.|
I know, I’m starting the lesson off hot here. But it’s true.
A dashingly handsome, uncannily funny movie star is THE BEST guerrilla Marketer on this planet.
|The legend of Marketer, Ryan Reynolds, all started when studio execs were hesitant to move forward with a film dedicated to the quiet red-suited superhero, Deadpool. |
Reynolds was infatuated with the possibilities of the Deadpool character and was determined to get the green-light from Marvel studios.
The initial script didn’t get any traction with Marvel. But *inexplicably* (cough cough) the script and test footage were leaked to the public and received a HUGE response.
|This was enough social proof for Marvel to give the go-ahead for Reynolds and Deadpool. |
I know what you’re thinking, that’s not a feasible Marketing strategy, but hold your horses. What ensued next was legendary.
Reynolds and his team began Marketing Deadpool with quick-hitter commercials and posters that gave absolutely nothing away about the film.
|Sounds like literally the worst Marketing strategy ever, right? Well it worked. |
The commercials and posters were all hilariously funny and built a mystery around the movie.
If you wanted to get to the bottom of the mystery, you had to go see the movie.
|The first weekend Deadpool grossed $132M, setting a box office record. (Yes I went to go see it LOL.) |
After securing a big pay day from the film, Reynolds set out on his next adventure, gin. In 2018 Reynolds bought a stake in Aviation Gin, an American gin struggling to grow.
|As he did with Deadpool, Reynolds pulled Aviation Gin up by its bootstraps and marketed the brand by himself. |
This led to a series of ads posted on Ryan’s personal YouTube that drew loads of attention to Aviation Gin.
When Peloton ran an ad that was criticized for being sexist and dystopian, actress Monica Ruiz (“Peloton Girl”) became a meme on Twitter.
|Reynolds immediately cast her in a jokingly-deprecating Aviation Gin ad where her friends toast “to new beginnings”. |
To top that, before Nick Cannon was due to have his EIGHTH child, Reynolds produced an ad in which Cannon shows the audience how to make Aviation Gin’s signature cocktail, “The Vasectomy” to celebrate Father’s Day.
Each of these ads were incredibly raw, they didn’t feel like ads. Being that they were all originally posted on Reynold’s personal YouTube, that feeling of authenticity and personal touch was accentuated.
|This built Aviation Gin into an approachable, relatable, and intriguing brand. Just 2 years after Reynolds purchased a stake in Aviation Gin, it was sold for $610M. |
To announce the sale and contribute one last guerrilla marketing effort to drive eyes to the brand, Reynolds shared a “leaked” email.
You can’t help but laugh at the email.
|Reynold’s unique brand of humor is woven into everything he touches. |
His ads don’t have taglines, they have punchlines. As if he couldn’t top a $610M sale, Reynolds bought an ownership stake in telecom startup Mint Mobile.
Following his proven strategy of authenticity over everything, Reynolds launched another series of ads to his YouTube channel.
|But don’t overlook his humor for lack of Marketing prowess. In each Mint Mobile ad he subtly conveys all vital pieces of info consumers need and the brand wants known. |
Like their $15 monthly fee compared to competitors.
Any traditional ad could compare prices with competitors in a boring commercial, but it’s Ryan Reynolds’ wit that grabs your attention and has you on the edge of your seat to hear what he says next, even if it’s just their new premium wireless service.
|To add one more trophy to his already loaded trophy case, Mint Mobile was sold for $1.35B to T-Mobile in 2023. |
Ryan Reynolds is the best guerilla Marketer on this planet.