Over the span of nine movies, multiple spin-off films and series, as well as a comic, there is a vast amount of wisdom to be found in the quotes from Star Wars characters.

Take, for example, the famous words of Obi-Wan Kenobi: “Many of the truths we cling to depend on our own point of view.” This basically reminds marketers that a change in perspective can solve a lot of the obstacles they may face, simply by approaching the problem from a new angle. Think of how campaign constraints can be sidestepped just by tackling them from a different point of view. See where we’re going with this?

So, when marketers face challenges in their daily tasks, what's better than turning to one of the most successful and iconic intergalactic stories ever told for inspiration? Or better yet, what fundamentals can it teach to make them a marketing master?

Here, media update’s Maryna Steyn dons her Jedi-robes to lay out what’s to learn from Star Wars.

1. All great marketers need to be exceptional storytellers

Everyone and we mean everyone, knows the famous intro to Star Wars: “A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away …” The franchise had no idea what they would be doing with this one line, as countless TV shows, films and even comics have adapted this line and used variations of it in their own content.

So, what does this tell us? Above all else, clever marketers need to be exceptional storytellers. As we mentioned in a previous article, stories evoke real emotional and behavioural responses. This is because stories are impactful and shareable, and they also humanise a brand.

Every marketer needs to know how to use storytelling effectively to persuade their audience to buy a product or service.

So with that in mind, what does the famous movie franchise teach us about a good story?

Setting the scene
Each film starts out with a screen crawl of what is happening, where it’s taking place and when that is. Next, the audience is thrust into introductions regarding who the main characters are. As we gradually get to know them, the story — the why — unfolds.

Marketers need to show audiences why they are marketing a product or service and on behalf of which brand (who). This creates context for your audience. What is being promoted is next, followed by the when and where.

Think, for instance, about the famous “Have a break, have a KitKat” line that tells consumers when to have a bite of chocolate. It’s important to add all these elements so the audience knows what you are talking about even if they’ve never seen a KitKat before. If you don’t, the message will get lost and, just like a Wookie, few will understand what you're saying.

Vibrant and memorable imagery
Star Wars remains one of the most memorable fandoms — partly because it has seemingly ordinary characters being called to extraordinary adventures. The other half is because of the unique characters and worlds. Whether it’s Darth Maul, R2D2 or Yoda, every character’s appearance, personality and actions give a lasting impression. That’s exactly what marketers need to strive for in their own creations!

Using distinct images makes your brand stand out and makes an impact on the audience. Making sure that your images are high quality, in line with the brand’s personality and are aesthetically pleasing all determine what your potential customers think of your brand. It also helps drive traffic to your website and assists in meeting your marketing goals.

Caption: Image sourced from PicClick

2. Marketers should never underestimate their capabilities

Any Star Wars fan would tell you: Never underestimate a droid. The same goes for marketers. And here's why:

Much like droids, marketers are excellent problem solvers
R2D2 always has a plan to get everyone out of a sticky situation. He fixed the shield generator on Queen Amidala’s ship, saved her from lava and delivered Princess Leia's message against all odds.

Marketers need to use their problem-solving abilities to overcome challenges. They also need to ensure that the right channels are used and that they understand their customers’ behaviour. This means that, ultimately, they will be able to deliver the brand message effectively and to the right people.

Droids are uniquely skilled and creative, and so are marketers
C-3PO is known for his vast knowledge about cultures, history and languages across the universe. This is because he is programmed in etiquette and protocol. His skills are useful to everyone he accompanies.

What’s more, astromech droids such as R2D2 and BB-8 are utility robots equipped to repair the hardware and software of starships. But throughout the films, they find creative ways to help their companions to escape dire situations and save the day.

Just like droids, every marketer has essential skills that they need to use in their creative endeavours. They need to be culturally sensitive and often might speak more than one language. They need to understand ‘marketing protocol’ and how it helps them to reach their — and their brand’s — goals.

Each member of the marketing team also has their set of ‘tools’ from their field of expertise that they use creatively to assist the rest of their team. These can both include traditional marketing and digital marketing savvy.

Caption: Image sourced from Popcorn Reviews

3. There’s no ‘I’ in ‘marketing team’

In a particularly famous scene, Obi-Wan Kenobi utters the bone-chilling realisation that what they are seeing in front of them is not a moon but a planet destroying space station. This superweapon was designed to let Emperor Palpatine (the leader of the baddies) control the Galactic Empire through fear. Known as the Death Star, it was built by the Imperial Military Department of Advanced Weapons Research. Yes, Geek-speak is in, folks!

So, what is the takeaway from this for marketers? We’ll give you a hint: “That’s no marketer. That’s a marketing team.”

A marketing team has strength in numbers
Whether you support the Dark Side or not, there is no denying that they conquered so much because of the sheer number of strong allies that they had (and a little bit of the Force, of course). Also, each researcher, lieutenant, clone or Darksider had a key role to play in the manufacture and operation of the Death Star.

And just in the same way, the strength of a marketing team lies in the strengths of the individual team members. This team can, for example, include a visual designer, copywriter, social media marketer, creative director and a public relations practitioner. Each person that is effectively playing their role contributes to the execution of a brilliant marketing campaign.

The devil is in the details
Ever wonder why the Death Star was so big? Well, it was designed to host a laser that could destroy a planet in a single blast. The station not only needed to hold the weapon part of the laser but also a reactor to power it. It also needed to house all of the operators, security and the ships they used to board it. However, despite its size and impression, the station was destroyed by the Rebel Alliance, due to a small hole that led directly into the reactor.

So marketers, take notes and remember to pay attention to the details. Key issues like the budget of a campaign or identifying the constraints of such a project are imperative.

Furthermore, research into the target audience, the campaign objectives and existing communication strategies within the brand is also important. After all, the aim is to avoid those small flaws that can ruin your entire plan.

Caption: Image sourced from Tenor

Which Star Wars quote resonates with your marketing the most? Let us know in the comments below.

Jedi Master Yoda once said that “In a dark place we find ourselves, and a little more knowledge lights our way”. Light your path with more knowledge and subscribe to our newsletter.

Do. Or do not. There is no try — but consider checking out our article about the Four lessons marketers can learn from each season.
*Image sourced from glorify.com