3 Marketing Lessons From The Hobbit

the hobbit and digital marketing in santa barbara

(SPOILER ALERT—go read the book you bum!)

Let’s get our nerd on! Last Saturday morning I went to see The Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug. Sure, there were some obnoxious additions, but they didn’t crap all over the book like certain niches of the Internet seem to think (do you hear the fanboys crying?). Hollywood does whatever it wants, so what do you expect, but that’s not the point.

I bet you’ve never thought about what The Hobbit can teach us about marketing! Get ready for 3 marketing lessons inspired by the nerdtastic adventure from the man, the legend, J.R.R. Tolkien.

Teamwork Is Essential, But Not As Essential As A Leader
The band of dwarves is unstoppable when they work together (except when it comes to trolls), but what would they be without their leader and king, Thorin Oakenshield? The answer is nothing but a bunch of crusty, out of work, artisan dwarves.


Sometimes it’s Bilbo, sometimes it’s Gandalf, but the fact is that someone always steps up and leads. A team needs those members who aren’t afraid to step up. This is universal.

An online marketing team in Santa Barbara is no different than a sports team or a business team; it’s known that a team without a leader festers with indecision. Your work force needs a leader, just like the dwarves need Thorin.

People Don’t Know What They Want. Time To Tell Them

“Sorry! I don’t want any adventures, thank you. Not today. Good morning!
But please come to tea—any time you like! Why not tomorrow? Good bye!”
-Bilbo Baggins

Oh but how you do, Bilbo, you just need some convincing.
tumblr_inline_mg7yaiCHlZ1rc05fl Marketing is about striking a balance between demands and persuasion. A marketer must answer unspoken questions like “why should I follow you and why should I share this?” or “how can web design benefit my Santa Barbara business?”

Gandalf uses trust and prods Bilbo’s courage to convince him to adventure, but there are an infinite number of tactics that can be used to quell reservations; tactics that takes decades to perfect, but one that is both bold and effective is honesty.

Put on your big boy pants and stop asking. You are the expert, so tell your customers what they need. “We don’t need web design and development for our Santa Barbara business.” Actually you do because the Internet is local and infinite! Let that soak in.

If Something Works, Run With It:
If you found a ring that made you invisible, wouldn’t you use it all the time to get out of trouble? Duh! Except if mine whispered to me in the Black Speech, I might be a little hesitant…

Frodo the Ring

The Ring works, so Bilbo uses it again and again. The same can be applied to any facet of business. When you find a technique that bolsters massive traffic, stick with it! Run with it until your feet are blistered, and then keep running and keep repeating that technique.

Web design that works in Santa Barbara will work anywhere. A successful online marketing strategy out of Santa Barbara will work anywhere! Find a business model that works, and don’t look back.

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