The TV Series “Game of Thrones” is brilliant; in fact, it is much more than that.
The story, the plotline, unexpected endings, twists, backstabbing, friendships, honor, loyalty, love, lust, incest, battles, wars, beautiful and diverse landscapes; it’s got it all.
There are those who think it is gruesome and that is a valid case. Surely the best TV series in history according to IMDB is worth taking some lessons from. (Second on the list is “Breaking Bad” another one of my all-time favorite TV series.)
The lessons that drew us closer were from a content marketing perspective. The game is brilliant, the content brilliant and the content marketing even better.
GoT has a huge budget, an army of behind the scene helpers but surely we can learn how the content marketing arrow finds its target.
SPOILER ALERT: Beware of some Season 6 Spoilers.
Content Marketing Lessons we can learn from the Epic “Game of Thrones”
1. Grip Your Audience With a Compelling Story
GoT’s story is captivating – the compactness of the plot, filled with interesting characters and their pasts, with the hitches like conspiracies, fights, bloodshed, sex, nudity strike us from all points.
2. Valar Morghulis, All Businesses Must Produce Engaging Content
In the digital age, all businesses that want to prosper online must produce content but the content must be engaging to be successful and deliver benefits. There is simply too much content and you need to find ways to stand out.
3. Gather Facebook, Twitter and Instagram Armies; Form Alliances At Will
Facebook Followers: 14.5 Million
Twitter Followers: 2.3 Million
Instagram Followers: 393K
4. Symbolize and Visualize Everything.
Remember the Iron Throne or symbols for the Houses Like The Dire Wolf for House Stark? Visualizing things make it easier to remember.
5. Surprise Your Readers with The Ending.
Remember the Red Wedding or the Battle of The B**stards? Traditional content is predictable the ending is almost always the same. Find ways to conclude your content on a different note maybe include a bonus tip; you are only limited by your imagination here.
6. Each Piece of Content has to Serve a Purpose Like Each Character in GOT.
Hodor – Hold the Door or Giant – Break the Door. Treat each piece of content as a page in a book. The book has to deliver the overall story and each chapter must be helpful to that cause.
7. Don’t Forget Traditional Marketing and Outdoor Ads.
GoT’s Dragon ad on New York Times is a great example. This depends on budget and industry but tapping into creative paid promotion can pay rich dividends.
8. Give Your Audience an Inside Look
9. It’s Okay to Kill Some Content that Adds No Value
It’s also okay to bring some content back from the dead, Content Repurposing.
10. When You Need Help Send a Raven to Get Help in the Nick of Time.
Email outreach, guest blogging and social promotion can help spread your content.
11. Don’t Underestimate Your Competition
Remember, Stannis and Tywin; They were both victims of either underestimating or not knowing their enemy. There is a lot you can learn from your competitors.
12. Don’t Doubt Yourself – Self Belief
You never know if you can bring someone back from the dead or call the Dragon at will.
13. Intros Can Tell Stories
Map out your content and tailor it to each buyer persona. Remember the Intro and Map in GoT?
14. Numbers Don’t Always Win Battles; Loyalty and Alliances Can
Content quality wins over quantity. Try to build a loyal social following.
15. Strategy, Tools and Tactics can be Equally Important
Remember Tyrion and the Battle of Blackwater.
16. Learn to Play the Game, the Content Marketing Game and Be Adaptable
Arya and Sansa Stark are great examples of characters that are learning and growing. Similarly, the content marketing game is not something you can set and forget. You have to learn and be adaptable.
17. Become a Leader People Can Look up to and Follow
Jon Snow and Daenerys Targaryen have slowly become leaders in GoT. Similarly, when you become a leader in your niche people will follow you. Neil Patel, Brian Dean and Pat Flynn are great leaders in the online world in their respective areas.
18. Produce Diverse Content Types
Like the diverse landscapes and characters in GoT, you can produce diverse content types to keep your audience engaged – Videos and Infographics can all help.
19. User Generated Content
User Generated Content is huge when it comes to GoT so find ways to get your audience involved; this may be as simple as running a contest.
20. Break The Rules; Surprise and Shock Your Audience
GoT does this by using incest, violence and brutal betrayals. What you do with your content is up to you, how will you go about surprising your audience?
21. You Must Take Risks to Entertain Your Audience
Even if it means killing heroes or favorite characters. The game has evolved and changed, people have abundant choices when it comes to online content. So are you willing to take some risks to stand out with your digital marketing?
The game is on, so will you adapt and learn to play the content marketing game or perish like some characters in GoT?