7 Passive Marketing Ideas You Can Implement Today

Discover 7 effective passive marketing ideas for immediate implementation. Boost your brand visibility effortlessly with these actionable strategies.

Business Marketing

As a small business owner, chances are you have spent more than a few hours looking at different marketing strategies. Typically, marketing falls into two main categories: active and passive marketing. 

While neither option is better than the other, both have advantages and disadvantages and can be highly beneficial for small companies looking to reach as many people as possible and get new customers on board. 

With this in mind, it pays to know the difference between active and passive marketing options to help you decide what is best for you and how to mix the different options. 

Passive marketing is a method of marketing that is more subtle and understated and doesn’t overwhelm the customer. It’s more natural and less abrasive than active marketing, and if done correctly, the customer won’t even realise you are marketing to them. 

As you can guess, active marketing is the complete opposite and is a more aggressive approach to forcing your company and brand into people’s faces. Good examples of active marketing are pop-up ads on websites, media advertising blasts, email campaigns, and similar options. 

This post will explore passive marketing campaigns and some great options you can use to your benefit without being too forceful. 

7 Passive Marketing Ideas You Can Implement Today

Social Media Ads

Social media ads are one of the most natural options for passive marketing. The ad you craft is embedded seamlessly into the feed of the platform you are advertising on and comes up on people’s screens as if it were just another post by a company. The only difference is that it will be marked as sponsored content. 

However, the sponsored tag isn’t enough to be overpowering on people’s screens, and the type of content you choose should represent the site itself and the type of content people expect to see. 

Plus, you can set a reach and demographic to help you target your ideal customer based on your preferred audience and their online browsing activity. 

If you need suggestions on how to integrate native social media ads, you can use the specific platform for tips and guidance or look at sponsored ads that pop up in your personal feed to see how other brands approach this marketing angle. Then, you can take notes on what appears to work or doesn’t quite hit the mark. 

Branded merchandise 

Merchandise can be an excellent passive marketing source, mainly because there are many different options available to help you spread the word. You can tailor your message and choose providers and items that align with your brand. 

For example, if you are a surf shop, branded items can include boards, wax, towels, sunscreen, water bottles, or wet suits for people to buy and use, as well as putting your logo on packaging and even staff uniforms. If you are an insurance provider, the type of branded products you use might differ slightly depending on what you do. You might choose custom pens, mugs, or notepads. You can add your logo and details on coasters, letterheads, or even to the side of vehicles. While some might argue this is a more active form of advertising, the time it’s infiltrating a person’s consciousness is fleeting, meaning it can pop in and out of their minds and build up visibility more discreetly. 


SEO is still one of the best passive marketing strategies for both physical and digital businesses. However, it isn’t one of the easiest. Done correctly, SEO can massively boost your visibility online and can help you play the long game when it comes to marketing. The idea is that when people are searching for keywords and phrases relating to your businesses, your SEO work will boost your presence and allow you to appear at the top of the search results, thus driving people to your website.

For the most part, it can be tricky and time-consuming, especially if you don’t have much knowledge or experience in the industry. Knowing what to implement and how to implement good SEO can make or break your web visibility. For this reason, many business owners use it to outsource SEO to help them avoid mistakes.

Good SEO tips you can consider include;

  • Link building
  • Content marketing using search terms
  • Mobile responsiveness
  • Using FAQs
  • Targeting low-search-volume keywords
  • Writing featured snippets
  • Crafting compelling titles
  • Alt tags on images

Autoresponders for Emails

This doesn’t mean having automated emails go out to people who send you emails, but this can be hugely beneficial if you’re busy so people know you will chase things up with them.

It means adding something of value to your emails that requires a person to respond to you.

Crafting engaging emails and newsletters can be time-consuming, and finding the sweet spot between being too aggressive and giving people a gentle nudge is a fine line. However, the one thing that offers the reader value and gives them a reason to provide you with the details you need is vital. You need to make it clear, visible, and easy to post; i.e., do not hide it in the bottom line, especially for a longer email. Make yourself as attractive as possible and ensure that you get the click-through you are after and that people feel compelled to respond.

This can be a simple line or question in your newsletter that is otherwise non-promotional, adding your information to your tagline so people know who you are and why they need to contact you, or writing a compiling header to your email that entices people to open it in the first place, where you then deliver the hook.

Print Ads

Print ads are much like digital or social media ads in that they aren’t glaringly obvious at first glance; instead, they are placed in well-positioned areas in media publications or as leaflets and even business cards if you so wish. Print ads are essentially a way you can spread the word of your business in a physical way and fly under the radar without it being glaringly obvious or disrupting what a person is doing. The trick is to seep into their line of thought and then leave again.

Used in conjunction with other advertising methods, print media can be an effective route for smaller or local businesses to take, as they can be distributed around the local area. It can be that you get your ad printed in a trade magazine targeting other local companies to boost B2B contacts, or you can put your leaflet or poster on a board in places that allow this type of advertising or anywhere at all.

Radio Ads

Radio used to be considered the gold standard of passive marketing in that the ads you create and put out to listeners would play to them as they tuned into their favorite station in a way that could catch their attention but not stop them in their tracks. While these days it isn’t considered the preferred option for marketing, it can still be effective, especially for those advertising on smaller local stations or those with massive listener figures.

To put it into context, in 2022, 82% of people aged 12 and over in the US listened to terrestrial radio, according to Nielsen Media Research, making it still one of the most potent mediums for advertising in the US. What happens is that you put your ad out for a specified amount of time and at a certain frequency, depending on your budget and agreement with the station. The longer people listen to the radio, the more often they will be exposed to your ad and this is where it will work its magic because even if they aren’t actively listening. The radio is on in the background; subconsciously, they will have heard it, and this will put you in the minds of people looking for what you do.


The more reviews you garner for your business, the better it will be for your reputation; you know this. However, encouraging people to leave reviews on popular review sites as well as your social media and website via testimonials will reinforce your marketing effort.

Let’s say people are searching for a company that sells the same type of food that you do in your local area. But you’re not ranking high enough against completion. Suppose a review site that has a more significant online authority has reviews featuring your brand name and any relevant keywords. In that case, if applicable, this can help boost your online visibility even if your website isn’t making it to the top pages. It can also help you pop into people’s minds if they use review sites to find retailers or service providers rather than search directly. 

Good reviews by independent parties and current and previous customers can help push people in your direction, especially as these sites usually have a way of directing people to your brand.

In Conclusion

Passive marketing can be an extremely effective method of marketing when used in conjunction with other methods and can really help you to boost success in a low-cost and low-effort way that continues to reap results for you time and time again.

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