When you dig deep enough, you will always uncover a unique story behind every successful brand. Entrepreneurs and small business owners often look to different elements in everyday life for inspiration when it comes to building and running a business, whether it’s the need to solve a problem in the community or to establish a brand that will outlive the individual.
No industry has mastered the art of inspiration like the film industry. Many Hollywood productions often leave us with some form of life inspiration – like reconnecting with your lost love after watching The Titanic or trying harder at work/business after watching The Pursuit of Happyness.
For small businesses, movies offer a lot of inspiration for success, mainly because they have been created by people who have been there or know someone going through the same thing.
Here are a few Hollywood-inspired lessons entrepreneurs and small business owners can learn about running a successful business.
1. Double-down on customer service
Ghostbusters (1984) wasn’t purely about taking the supernatural out of homes and the streets. It was also about great customer service. Dr. Stantz and his team were available 24 hours a day, were knowledgeable in eliminating the supernatural, and always knew how to handle their clients.
Even if your business has specific hours of operation, always ensure your lines of communication are open to customers 24/7. Always be on the lookout for phone calls, emails, form submissions, live chat requests on your websites, and mentions on social media to ensure your brand is always reachable. If your customers can’t reach you within hours, ensure your website has a FAQ page with helpful information that they can go through when you’re unreachable.
2. Use technology effectively
Hollywood has always been a regular source of inspiration for many of the tech innovations we see today.
The heavy investments in bringing out some of these technologies even before real-life production had begun illustrates how much of a differentiating factor technology can be for any enterprise.
There are so many disruptive technologies you can use to start and grow your business. You can use technologies such as artificial intelligence, machine learning, and cloud-based tools in the fields of accounting, inventory management, and CRM as core technologies to ensure your business stays tech-friendly.
3. Invest in content marketing
Movies have a lot to teach us about content. Marvel, the production company that gave us Spiderman, Iron Man, Hulk, and many of our favorite superheroes, is one of the best places to draw inspiration for new content. Marvel has built their brand almost exclusively via a robust content marketing strategy. They have also invested in multiple formats for content presentation to suit the needs of their wide and varied fan base.
Content marketing is one of the biggest differentiating factors for successful business. Without a robust content creation and marketing strategy, your business will lose out on a massive opportunity to bring on board new clients and service existing ones.
A good content marketing strategy should be visible across multiple platforms, including social media. It should also be customized for mobile since a big chunk of your audience will probably access your content via their smartphones and tablets.
4. Stick to what you do best
Shrimp. That’s the first word that comes to mind when anyone mentions Forrest Gump. In the movie, Mr. Gump pushes through difficult times with an obscenely simple business idea and finally manages to convert it into a sustainable business.
When starting out with a new business, there are probably a million ideas you had to choose from before settling on one. Once the business takes off, avoid the temptation to branch out into unrelated businesses just because the first one panned out. Focus on growing the current business by investing in marketing, improving the range of products or services, and catering to the needs of your customers efficiently.
So, if you are an aspiring entrepreneur who’s stuck somewhere along the entrepreneurial journey, maybe it’s time to kick back, relax, and sample a selection of movie titles on Netflix or Hulu. It might just be the jolt you need to take your entrepreneurial journey to the next level.