January 21, 2016
Star Wars kills it in the marketing stakes – it’s a real model of how to make the most of a brand. It’s always been the case, from the focus on selling merchandise that came with the first films, to the campaigns around the poorly received prequels.
The latest film has ramped this up again, thanks to the support of Disney and also the inter-generational love of the film. So, what should normal brands take from this success?
Reference Timeless Material
Have you ever thought of a hashtag as a marketing tool? Believe it or not, it is one. For example, when you include #throwback in one of your posts, more people tend to share it; it is an indication of nostalgia and it gets people excited. If you are looking for a real world example of this, look no further than the Star Wars franchise.
They put up an older picture of Darth Vader on Instagram. It showed the villain on set, and it quickly received more than 50,000 likes in less than a day. What does all this have to do with you? If you are getting ready to release a new product or service, go back in time a bit. Link your new product to an old one that was once very popular. Followers will want to share and/or comment. However, in order for this to work the best, the post must be very relatable.
It Takes Time
Luke wasn’t a great Jedi in the first movie that was released. He trained, he learned and eventually, he was able to battle with the best of them. Similarly, it takes time to be seen as an expert in your field. If you want to speed up the process, make sure that you are contributing interesting, useful content. Put up links to good content. Be a regular on social media sites. And, don’t forget to take the time to educate yourself on your chosen field. This isn’t going to catapult you to success immediately, but it will help you set up a blog that eventually garners attention.
Make Your Own Alliance
Many people were less than thrilled when Disney announced that it was buying the Star Wars franchise. However, with the release of the latest movie, this collaboration has proven that it actually works. It was about four years ago when Disney purchased Lucasfilm, a move that gave them the rights to Star Wars. It did not seem like a match at first; Disney makes family friendly movies. Star Wars featured Princess Leia in a gold bikini. Many people thought that this would mean the end of the Star Wars that they loved. However, it has not. Partnering with someone else may be nerve wracking initially, but it could make all the difference in the world in the end.
Use the Talents of Others
If Star Wars and its marketing campaign shows anything, it’s that using the power of other people’s talents and their interest in your brand can have significant benefits. Alongside the sheer wade of official merchandise, the film has also created a significant amount of buzz among brands looking to pop on the bandwagon and leverage the film’s popularity.
This has resulted in some absolutely awesome media being created independently around the film. SNL’s recent Star Wars Undercover Boss mash up with Adam Driver, who plays Kylo Ren in the films, has almost 10 million views within a week.
There have also been numerous other amazing efforts of brands trying to jump on the bandwagon – this infographic showcases a huge amount of detail on the logistics of building the Millennium Falcon for instance and is something that Star Wars geeks are bound to love.
George Lucas understood his audience. He knew what they wanted to see. That doesn’t mean that he never made mistakes (Jar Jar Binks is a classic example of this). However, he typically got it right. If you are running an Internet business, you need to look at your target market to determine where you need to go with your company. Make connections with your customers so that they want to refer you to others. Figure out what people are looking for and give it to them; your traffic will increase as a result.
Star Wars is an amazing success story and the above showcases this and is something brands should certainly take account of.
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