Guerilla Marketing in a War Zone: Creative Low-Tech Marketing Strategies for Ukrainian Maritime Businesses


The war in Ukraine has sent shockwaves through the global economy, and the Ukrainian maritime industry has been especially hard-hit. Ports have faced closures, shipping routes have been disrupted, and businesses are struggling to stay afloat.

Yet, amidst the devastation, Ukrainian maritime businesses are demonstrating remarkable resilience and a deep well of creativity.

Did you know that in March 2024, 11.8 million tonnes of cargo worth USD 3.2 billion were exported from Ukraine?

The reason behind this growth of businesses after the Russian aggression over the nation is the power of innovation and resourcefulness. I’ve spent over two decades in this industry, and recently, I’ve seen a complete transformation in marketing strategy utilization.

What’s the marketing trend that currently making a fuzz?

Guerilla marketing has become a trend among businesses to stay ahead of the competition. How does it help to attract customers?

Unlike conventional marketing, which relies on substantial budgets and extensive campaigns, guerilla marketing focuses on small, impactful actions that generate significant buzz and engagement.

For maritime businesses operating in a war zone, this approach can be particularly effective, allowing them to reach their audience in unexpected and memorable ways.

As a maritime entrepreneur, I’ve personally seen businesses thrive in war zones by utilizing guerilla marketing’s low-tech, high-impact tactics. These innovative strategies have enabled significant growth despite challenging circumstances, proving that creativity and resourcefulness can drive success even in the most difficult environments.

Therefore, let me share some of the strategies to help you reach new audiences and keep your business visible during the crisis.

Leveraging the digital sphere:

Social media platforms are powerful tools for guerilla marketing, offering a direct line to customers without the need for substantial investment. Here are a few strategies to consider:

Targeted social media ads and campaigns: Social media has become more than just a content-sharing platform. For businesses, it’s a significant tool that can attract customers. For that you have to utilize social media advertising platforms to target specific demographics, like international shipping companies or clientele in search of reliable maritime services. Customers often get bored with the same type of content. Therefore, you have to craft compelling ad copy that highlights your expertise, unwavering service, and commitment to navigating the challenges of wartime operations.

Hashtag campaigns: The follower count on your social media will not increase overnight without any effort! Have you heard of hashtag campaigns? It requires you to develop a unique hashtag that captures the essence of your message. Encourage your clients to share their experiences using your services by tagging them with this hashtag. This raises awareness and fosters a feeling of solidarity among your clientele.

Revamp your existing website: Your website is the mirror image of your brand’s personality. Don’t treat it with less importance! Ensure your website is up-to-date and mobile-friendly. To be honest, users judge your brand by going through your website, and if you take it lightly, more likely the customers will not be attracted to your business.

Since internet access may be limited, prioritize a website that loads quickly and provides all essential information clearly and concisely. Include high-quality photos and videos showcasing your vessels, crew, and safety measures. Most importantly, ensure your contact information is accurate and easily accessible.

Advantages you receive from guerilla marketing:

Let’s be honest, budget becomes a huge obstacle when it comes to traditional marketing strategies. However, guerilla marketing marketing offers a range of benefits that can help you achieve your goals without exceeding the set budget. Here’s how:

  • Cost-Effective: Guerilla marketing tactics are designed to be low-cost or even no-cost. By leveraging creativity and resourcefulness, you can reach a wide audience without expensive advertising campaigns.
  • High Impact: Guerilla marketing thrives on surprise and innovation. A well-executed campaign can generate significant buzz and brand awareness, leaving a lasting impression on potential clients.
  • Targeted Reach:Guerilla marketing allows you to target specific audiences within the maritime industry. Whether you’re looking to connect with international shipping companies or local port authorities, you can tailor your tactics to reach the right people.
  • Builds Brand Image: Guerilla marketing can showcase your company’s creativity, resilience, and ability to adapt to challenging circumstances. This can help you build a strong brand image and position yourself as a leader in the Ukrainian maritime industry.

Get Crafty with Traditional Marketing:

Flyers and Posters: Design eye-catching flyers and posters that showcase your services and communicate your brand image.  Distribute them at strategic locations around the port – think bulletin boards, cafes frequented by seafarers, crew waiting areas, or maritime training centers.

Word-of-Mouth Marketing: Encourage your employees to become brand ambassadors.  Positive word-of-mouth recommendations are invaluable, especially in close-knit maritime communities.  Train your staff on the key messaging and equip them with business cards or flyers to share with potential clients.

Remember, every action counts! By implementing these guerilla marketing strategies, you can keep your business relevant, reach new audiences, and demonstrate the USP of your company during this difficult time.

There’s more to guerilla marketing- Let’s discuss it over a call!

Understanding the core strategies of guerilla marketing requires foundational knowledge and proper training. As a professional trainer, I offer specialized training for seafarers, cadets, and maritime officials, including officers and managers. I can help you grasp the essential aspects of guerilla marketing, enabling you to enhance your customer base even in challenging market conditions.

Let’s discuss these marketing opportunities over a call. Gain valuable insights on strategies that can elevate your maritime business to new heights. Reach out today to transform your business through innovative guerilla marketing techniques.


Resilience, flexibility, and a hint of inventiveness are necessary to successfully handle the intricacies of a war zone. Guerrilla marketing gives Ukrainian maritime companies an effective toolkit for interacting with clients, cultivating brand loyalty, and staying visible during trying times.

Maritime businesses can not only survive but thrive by utilizing social media, working with local artists and influencers, participating in the community, putting creative promotional stunts into action, using conventional media, and maximizing word-of-mouth.

The innovative spirit and community support will be the guiding light that leads maritime companies through these difficult times. Accept guerrilla marketing and let your imagination lead the way to achievement!

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