As a marketer, I’m always looking beyond the typical business and marketing circles for ideas and inspiration. And celebrities and the entertainment industry can certainly provide great ideas for marketing dos and don’ts. They know how to create a buzz, deal with being in the public eye (or not) and everyone can take a lesson from their favorite celebrities.
Since Jennifer Lawrence burst onto the scene in Winter’s Bone, (which earned her a nomination for an Academy Award for Best Actress in 2011) she has become one of the most powerful women in Hollywood. Not only is she an extremely talented actress, she’s also a complete marketing powerhouse.
Here are 8 marketing lessons I’ve learned from Jennifer Lawrence:
1. There’s No Such Thing as an Overnight Success
Before Lawrence was cast in Winter’s Bone, she was a working actress and left high school early to follow her dream. She appeared on episodes of Monk, Cold Case, and Medium, and then 30 episodes of the The Bill Engvall Show, along with acting in several independent films. While it may have seemed that she came out of nowhere, she’d been working steadily since 2006 in TV and film roles.
When it comes to marketing and business in general, there truly is no such thing as an overnight success. Dig deeper for the backstory to learn how things came to the point they are at today, and don’t expect your venture to suddenly hit the big time. It takes hard work and hustle to get where you want to go – and it may take years.
2. Consistency is Key
As an actress, Lawrence is consistently amazing and delivers the goods. She also works consistently, taking on a wide variety of roles. If you look her filmography, she has been working continually since 2011 taking on roles in the Hunger Games, X-Men, Silver Linings Playbook and more. Audiences, directors and producers all adore her because they know they can count on her performance and she stays top of mind.
With any marketing initiative your audience needs to know that you won’t pull a disappearing act. It’s important that you show up consistently and you exceed their expectations every time .
3. You Don’t Always Have to Be the Lead Actress
While Lawrence is one of the most powerful people in Hollywood right now, she chooses her roles thoughtfully and carefully. She doesn’t always have to be the superstar and excels in ensemble casts, such as those in The Hunger Games Trilogy or American Hustle.
Working in a team and finding the right support gives marketing more impact. Look at how you can hire additional talented people or team up with other companies or individuals to make your performance stronger.
4. Carve Out Your Own Niche
When Lawrence appeared on the scene, she was compared with Best Actress nominees such as Carey Mulligan and Rooney Mara. Since then, Jennifer has essentially created her own niche where no other actress is in the same league. Her star power and talent is so strong that she’s landing roles that are tailor made for her.
Creating your own niche is one of the most effective ways to set yourself apart in your industry and in your marketing. You can eliminate competition quickly by clearly creating a niche where your performance or product is so superior that no one can even swim in the same pool.
5. Stay Classy
Jennifer Lawrence is young, yet you don’t see pictures of her hitting the clubs or partying it up with friends. She understands that she is in the public eye, and unfortunately will be judged by her actions. By keeping it classy she shows that she is reliable and worthy of the accolades she receives.
Keep your marketing classy by not bashing the competition and staying out of things that could be perceived as unprofessional or questionable. You and your organization’s brand and reputation is at stake.
6. Be Authentic and Accessible
A big part of Lawrence’s appeal is the fact that she’s so likable. Her persona is very much that of someone everyone wants to be around, she’s your girl next door, your best friend, your quirky cousin. She’s shamelessly authentic showing off her goofy side (tripping at awards shows – anyone who’s ever worn heels understands) and staying very accessible (bringing her childhood best friend as her date to awards shows). Many stars win the public over with mystery, but Lawrence does the opposite by simply being who she is.
Look at how you can make marketing more human and tap into the fact that people do business with people. If you can create an experience where customers or clients feel that your organization is accessible, they are more likely to continue doing business with you.
7. Know When to Step Back
There’s no denying that Lawrence has a well-oiled PR machine that goes to work with the release of each film, but in between films, you don’t see a lot of Lawrence. She understands that PR is best done when you have something to say and that it is not effective when you are consistently out there angling for coverage. Unlike many of her contemporaries who are out there posing hard on every red carpet they can find, Lawrence only goes for PR when it is appropriate.
PR is a powerful tool, but you want to take a page from the Jennifer Lawrence playbook and only pursue it when you really have something to say. Focus on doing PR when you have your best news or stories to share. Your efforts will be much more effective as people will want to hear what you have to say.
8. Tackle Sticky Situations Head On
The recent nude photo scandal where hackers shared photos obtained illegally – including ones of Lawrence – was an unfortunate, but apt example of how to deal with a situation when things go bad. Lawrence was swift in her response, issuing a comment via Twitter.
Things will go wrong at some point, so you need to be ready to communicate in a timely manner as they happen. Too often companies duck and run for cover, which only leads to rumors and speculation. Have a solid crisis plan and team in place so you can deal with sticky situations head on.
Jennifer Lawrence delivers many marketing strategy lessons that we can all learn from. What celebrities have inspired your marketing strategy? What can you learn from them? Comment below.
Featured photo credit: Mingle Media Tv via flickr.com