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What “Lord of the Rings” Taught Me About Online Marketing

Inbound Marketing

The past three years I had the pleasure of working for one of the biggest players in Online Marketing, Google and as a company tradition we would go see midnight movies at a local theater. One of my favorite experiences was attending a screening for Lord of the Rings: Return of the King. We were all there in extravagant costumes, I came dressed up as my favorite dwarf, Gimli. Somewhere between my programmer friend dressed as Bilbo, the Hobbit, and a web designer I didn’t know dressed as Aerowyn, the Princess of the Elves, it hit me: we are the people that make Online Marketing work. We aren’t the old-style suit and tie marketers that we think of in the big Marketing firms, we are, simply put: nerds.

Respect the Crawl

So why does this matter? Inbound Marketing is all about getting potential customers to look at your page right? Wrong. Before we can even think about the customer, we have to think about the nerd who decides whether the potential customer should even have the option of looking at the content. The omnipresent search engine algorithm that is Google is changing more often and more dramatically than any point in its history and it isn’t enough to keep up with it like some of the biggest firms in the world do, a marketing firm needs to be able to anticipate where it is going. What will the search engine look like tomorrow, or a year from today? At Mojo Media Labs we have bonafide nerds working here. Nerds like me who understand the technical side of the marketing. Our employees understand the crawl, how Google’s massive army of computers look at your website, we understand how page authority works but more importantly we understand tomorrow’s culture of online marketing.

The Nerd’s Future of Online Marketing

  1. Communities
  2. Soft Sell
  3. Honesty
  4. Organic

So what do nerds like and what is the heart of Inbound Marketing? Nerds like communities; we get really excited about the idea of people collaborating. We like the soft sell, not the old gimmicks or pop up ads. Nerds appreciate it when you’re honest with us, don’t lie to a nerd, we never forget. We like it when content is organic, when we can find what we are looking for in a natural process.

Business and the Geek

So what does this look like for business? It looks like Inbound Marketing, the great equalizer. It puts the largest company in the world on the same plane as the smallest company in the world you’ve never heard of, yet. However, the key to all of this is understanding what the nerds are going to think of your site. Google and other large search engine even penalize websites that don’t follow their beliefs and some of the methods that big companies use will even get your site banned permanently. Practices like link farming and content masking that used to be the staple of the old marketing firms of the 2000s will literally extinguish your web presence. But it also rewards people that do marketing right. Companies that give searchers what they want find can have huge even triple digit percentage changes in web traffic. Understanding the nerd can even produce results as incredible as the coveted “viral” status.

So like any good quest, it is my privilege to reward you with something. I didn’t have any glowing blue swords lying around, so this knowledge will have to do. Online marketing today and more importantly tomorrow won’t be about tricking the nerds or the customers into trying something new, it will be about working with them to make something they want. This creates trust with sites like Google and what’s even better it creates lasting partnerships with your customers leading to loyalty and reinvestment.

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