What Legend of Zelda Taught Me about Online Marketing

Marketing can be a world of adventure and discovery all its own, so there’s no surprise that we could pick up a trick or two from one of the most popular video game franchises of the past 25 years. What can Legend of Zelda teach you about being a better marketer?

We’re all a bit nerdy here at Kayak, but I’m the one who’s into video games, and I’ve had my favourite green-capped hero on the mind lately. I like to draw parallels between my leisure time and my work time, and like a lot of marketers I take inspiration from the world around me to improve at the office.

The Legend of Zelda is a series of adventure games where you play a hero named Link, exploring new lands and deep dungeons full of dangerous enemies to rescue Princess Zelda. Just like a novel, TV or movie series, the Legend of Zelda games all contain similar rules and play styles. 

The things that we do on our downtime can be refreshing and educating. The gameplay in Legend of Zelda can have a lot to say about keeping your prospects interested and engaged with your website. 

Four things the Legend of Zelda can teach you about being a better business marketer:

1. People Love to Collect

In the world of Hyrule, you’re trying to collect complete sets of things. The main goal of the game is to unite the Triforce – three triangles hidden on far-flung edges of the game’s world. The drive to finish a collection is a powerful one, in game and out, whether it’s the next ebook in a series or a missing puzzle piece. 

Business websites have great content set opportunities. A sales funnel should be a set of information you are giving to visitors. Look at all of your offers and see how they can work together so that each one is more useful than the next, leading the customer through to conversion. As they move through the process, ask for the information about your prospect and their business that helps you sell to them.

Blog post series are another way to offer sets of information to prospects. Blog posts are strictly top of the funnel, but a set of educational blog posts will keep visitors on your site and gives your content a lot of time to make a good impression. The longer someone is on your website paying attention, the more opportunity you have to impress them with what you have to offer.

2. Good Help Has Its Limits

As you take Link on adventure after adventure, you’re accompanied by a companion. Each game has a unique companion, and certain companions are more fun than others. The notorious Navi was by far the worst. Constantly interrupting you for no reason at all, Navi’s “Hey, Listen!” has become a gamer shorthand for in-your-face interruption.

Link and NaviNavi, a little fairy, made a fun adventure game feel like a chore, and your website could be doing the same. Interrupting a quality blog post halfway through with a loud CTA, chat boxes that automatically pop up over content and other forceful online marketing tactics can take a prospect from interested to searching for the exit button. Be helpful and know when to ask for attention – but do it too soon and you’ll have your prospects moving in the wrong direction.

3. Know the Right Time to Give Them More

You don’t start a game of Legend of Zelda with everything you need to win. If you did, it’d be too confusing to learn all of your new weapons and tools at once! As you explore new areas, you will earn a new tool, and be given ample time to practice before you have access to the next one.

At Kayak, arming clients with information is an essential part of our marketing process. We train, educate and coach the clients we work with to make sure they are confident using the tools and information we’ve provided them for their marketing. Marketing is always a learning process – teaching a prospect your process, your skills and the benefits you provide for their company and customers.

Teach too much, too soon, or teach the wrong thing at the wrong time and the result will be confusion, frustration and overload. You need to give your readers and customers confidence with one topic or product before you move on to teaching them the next one.

4. Keep them Coming Back

Maybe the most important reason you’re reading this blog post is that The Legend of Zelda games have been so interesting and engaging that I have always gone back to them and anticipated new releases. I have attended symphony performances of the music and have the soundtracks of my favourite titles in the game series on my iPod (they make great working music!). 

I know I can rely on the series to deliver, and your prospects and customers should look forward to interacting with you, whether it’s in the comments of your blog, replying to an aritcle you’ve shared on social media, or hiring you to work with them. 

In time, the Zelda series has become a tradition in gaming – with every new console announcement, Nintendo will release a new title in the series. As time has gone on, each game the series contributes to a larger whole, telling the story of an entire game world. Your offers can do the same – contribute to a full picture of your strengths and what you have to offer. 

Looking at your goals and business from a new angle can refresh the way you think about what you’re doing to try to achieve them, whether that’s video games or a hobby you like to practice in your own free time.


Randy’s Post on Social Media Today:

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Unfortunately, looking for a quick fix isn’t going to help, no matter how badly they might want or need one. To give you a sense of why, here are condensed descriptions of four real-life inquiries…

Read the rest of the article on Social Media Today

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