Imagine starting work one day and a line of people are waiting to work with you. There are hundreds of people lined up out the front, with the line winding down the block, around the corner and out of sight.
There are even some people in sleeping bags or sitting on foldout chairs sipping coffee having just woken up from spending the night sleeping on the pavement. And all these people are waiting with cash in hand ready to buy that thing you sell.
Sounds pretty awesome doesn’t it? Also sounds a little unrealistic right?
Well the truth may be that you will never have customers sleeping out the front of your store, however there are some valuable lessons we can learn from Hollywood about creating buzz, excitement and a buying frenzy for your product or service.
Every year there is a blockbuster of the summer. A movie so in demand and popular that people go crazy over. Getting people so worked up with excitement and anticipation that they dress up as their favorite character, sleep in the streets just to be firsts in line to buy a ticket.
These movies will go to have hundreds of showings, thousands of DVD’s sold and they’ll even show up on the television. Yet people still feel they have to see it first and see it NOW.
Why is this?
The good news is it all comes down to marketing tactics that can be applied to your business!
So, let’s take a look at 4 common tactics used in Hollywood and how you can apply them to your business:
This does not mean the story in the movie, rather the story surrounding the movie.
For example, magazines and newspapers run many articles full of speculation and interest surrounding the gossip from the movie set. Is there tension between the lead actors? Is the starring actress refusing to leave her trailer before 11am? Has there been major issues with production?
People get pulled into the story that is happening and want to know what will happen next.
What story is happening for your business? Has there been major issues with suppliers, dramas at the factory or has something exciting happened that you can share with your audience?
A movie trailer may only be a few minutes long but in it they show the highlights, the exciting parts, the interesting bits, and all to make you go ‘I have to know more’.
In the online world this is the part where people give away cool free content. They give away a technique or idea that is working fantastically well. Sure, they might be doing this to be nice, but generally people give away the highlights to draw you in and to raise your interest.
You would think that there is no scarcity when it comes to movies. Once they are released, they are forever out in the world on DVD, Blu Ray, on the internet, at the cinema, on your TV. There is basically an unlimited supply of the movie yet people get so excited about being the first to see a movie that they do all kinds of crazy things.
Scarcity works in a number of ways. People want and crave what they can’t have, for example with the movies there is only one ‘first showing’ which creates demand as people vie to be one of the few that gets in first. The scarcity then breeds more demand as others want to get in on the act too.
How can you create scarcity in your business? A few well-known examples are the use of limited editions or free gift with purchase. If it is a physical good that is actually limited that is fantastic. If it is a service and you can only help 10 people at a time that is scarcity that works extremely well.
Perhaps the most crucial tactic is to have a release date or a launch date.
You can create all the anticipation, scarcity and intrigue you want but it all must culminate in a certain date or event.
In Hollywood this is the release date of the movie, in your business it can be the start date of a sale or the date you release a new product or service. One thing to remember is that there needs to be a corresponding end date as well. Your sale cannot go on indefinitely, your new limited and exclusive offering will not be around forever.
So, if you want to market your business like a Hollywood blockbuster be sure to create a compelling story for your prospects to get involved with, give away something useful and interesting but not everything and be sure to get a release date!