Editor's Note: Today's blog comes courtesy of Jeff Rummer, Manager of Demand Gen Strategy at Covidien. A certified Eloqua and RPM Master, Rummer works collaboratively with MarComm, Product Marketers, Sales and Sales Operations to build campaigns that deliver relevant, timely and compelling content to customers and prospects.
The person we have to thank for much of the superhero hype is Stan Lee, former president and chairman of Marvel Comics. He co-created Spider-Man, the Hulk, the X-Men, the Fantastic Four, Iron Man, Thor, and of course, Iron Man, among many others. He led the expansion of Marvel Comics from a publishing house division to a multimedia powerhouse. Here are four fantastic insights on modern marketing taken from the career of the king of comics:
1. Alliteration. Stan Lee characters were often alliteratively named: Pepper Pots, Doctor Doom, J. Jonah Jameson Jr., Reed Richards, Sue Storm, Silver Surfer, Peter Parker, Bruce Banner, Scott Summers, Matt Murdock (Daredevil) just to name a few. Eloqua Experience, Road to Revenue, and the recent introduction of Modern Mark follow in that same vein. Modern Mark even takes a superhero slant with a hipster style and a little less spandex (are those skinny jeans?) If you really want to take this concept and run with it, try using alliteration in your subject lines.
2. Content-Based Community. Before blogs and social media, Stan Lee transformed the way comic book fans connected with creators by crediting the creative team and publishing news about these Marvel characters and upcoming storylines on the Bullpen Bulletins page at the back of each issue. The combination of credit, candor, and community created powerful storylines and paved the way for Marvel to be a voice for social change. Get connected with your client community.
3. Marvel Method. Stan Lee recognized the skill sets of his team, their time constraints and implemented the collaborative plot script style to leverage creativity and increase efficiency. Kapost just released an excellent eBook titled “Blueprint of a Modern Marketing Campaign” on how to apply a similar “Marvel method” to your marketing planning and content creation using themes, also known as an editorial calendar and the “Content Pillar Approach.”
4. Know Your (or your team’s) Flaws. Stan Lee was the first to introduce a flawed humanity to the superhero archetype with the Fantastic Four. Fantastic Four’s immediate popularity led to the development of other flawed heroes like Hulk, Iron Man, Thor, the X-Men, and Spider-Man. The ideal marketer — much like a perfect superhero — is a challenging balance to strike, according to BtoB Magazine and Eloqua’s recently published Defining the Modern Marketer study. The data shows that marketers rate themselves at having only 65% of the ideal modern marketing skill set. Ask any Markie winner and they will tell you that their success is due to an effective team.
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