This past Saturday morning, the good folks at Rovio formally announced the new Rio Edition of the Angry Birds game . There has been lots of other Angry Birds news as of late, but you can be sure that the promise of new levels got fans more excited than any board game or line of plush toys ever could. Myself included. But because of a few web projects I'm currently working on, it also got me thinking about how effective the pig-bludgeoning attitudes and tactics of the Birds are when it comes to building out effective web content. For your see, not only is the kidnapping of their eggs easy to identify with and remarkably human, but there is no better blueprint for online marketing success than the methods of the Angry Birds.
5 Things Angry Birds Can Teach You About Online Content1. Define a Strategic Process
When you're first shown a new level in Angry Birds, you likely spend a minute analyzing the set up of the board. How many pigs are there? How are they positioned? Any boxes of TNT, or other fulcrums you should try to hit? The birds did this before you got here. They've surveyed the scene - gotten a lay of the land - and assembled themselves in a strategic order. They are lined up Red, Yellow, Yellow, Blue, Black for a reason. They know what needs to happen for you to be successful - and for them to get their eggs back. Use this model and define a strategic order for how you publish your content online. Consider how writing a blog article, optimizing the content and sharing it effectively in social media can have the same obliterating effects for your article as sailing a red bird into a wooden board, bombing a black bird into a joint of stone pieces and spraying some blue birds into a barricade of frozen planks can have on the Pig Army. There should be a inbound launch (pun intended) plan in place for all your web marketing initiatives.
2. Identify and Attack a Point of Weakness
We've probably all wasted a Yellow Bird at least once or twice in our playing. You make the second tap accidentally as he's coming out of the slingshot, and he redirects off into space at warp speed. Depending on what progress you've made against the pigs, that misfire can be costly. Just like spending time on a blog article or website offer can be if it doesn't have a target. You never shoot a bird just to watch it fly (though their flight paths are graceful and beautiful) - you're always aiming. Likewise, never write, approve or publish a blog article unless you can point to the long-tail keyword bullseye you're aiming it at. Don't spend time planning a webinar and creating the offer button/landing page/web-to-lead form conversion path unless you know it's something your customers and prospects want.
3. Don't be Afraid to Use the Eagle
Having trouble getting through a level? The Angry Birds recruited the Mighty Eagle for exactly that purpose. Toss a sardine can out onto the pitch, and he'll swoop in violently and decimate everything in a 2-thumb radius (article written to smartphone scale). Use Pay-Per-Click advertisements like you use the Eagle - to wipe out your search engine competition on a per-keyword basis. Doing so will let you see what type of traffic that keyword will get you, and understand if developing more content along those lines for organic ranking will be worth it for you.
The Pigs are a worthy foe, for sure - what with their hard hats and clever fort construction. But whether it's the Old West in Ham Em' High or a spooky forest in the Halloween Edition, the Birds' greatest strength remains their ability to reset, regroup and mount continuous attacks. Employ this same resilience with your blogging and social media efforts. Tweet and use Facebook wall posts in support of all your marketing events; publish blog articles twice or three times weekly; have a news section on your site to promote company and product news. Drop content on your competitors like the White Bird drops explosive egg-bombs.
5. Assemble a Cross-Functional Team
The Yellow Bird splinters wood into a million pieces. The Blue Bird's projectile children take care of ice. Black Birds detonate and reduce concrete pillars to rubble. All the birds have their own talent. They all bring something unique to the table. Recruit your content creation team in a similar fashion. Just having marketing brains will limit what you're able to come up with, so branch out and include people from other departments in your company. Solicit some sales folks - they'll be able to write out answers to questions they know customers are asking. Sign up some engineers - they'll be able to represent things from the technical perspective. Maybe an executive can pen thoughts on trends and where the industry is going? The effects can be devastating when teams work together to cover all the angles. Just ask a pig.
Have you learned any other marketing lessons from Angry Birds?
Photo Credit: Denis Dervisevic