A New Treat From The Harry Potter Universe – How Content Serialization Can Help Your Marketing
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Potterheads from all around the world – unite! It is time for yet another exciting thing from the wizarding world! No, sorry, it’s not your Hogwarts admission letter, but it is the long anticipated Fantastic Beasts -The Crimes of Grindelwald, so that’s like the second best thing!
The second part of the Harry Potter prequel will hit the cinemas on 16th November and from what we’ve seen from the trailer, it will be amazing!
Sequels and prequels are something we are used to seeing in the world of entertainment. However, serialization initially referred to books. Imagine having to fit all seven Harry Potter books into one. You would either end up with an incomplete story that would omit a lot of details, characters, and events, or a book that if you place on the floor and stand next to it will stand taller than you. The first option will not be appealing to readers because it will be underdeveloped – readers won’t be able to create a bond with the characters, there will be major plot holes, and it will be very vague. The second option, well, let’s just say it will be highly impractical not only for reading but also for carrying it from the bookstore to your home if you are a fan of hard copies.
The wizarding world created by J. K. Rowling is a truly exceptional masterpiece that lived past the pages of the books and took different forms – movies, action figures, theater plays, theme parks – all of them supported by the loyal fan base. But can your content marketing strategy learn a valuable lesson from the Harry Potter phenomenon?
Why Is Content Serialization a Good Idea?
The story of Harry Potter is spread over 7 books or 8 movies. Initially, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them was just a thin book of notes made by Newt Scamander describing the beasts he encountered that Harry needed to go through. However, fans were hungry for more and J. K. Rowling gave them more.
The first part of Fantastic Beasts made a whopping $814 million worldwide, which is nearly what some of the Harry Potter movies made in the box office.
That brings us to a very important point – if you lay the foundations right it will be easier for you to build a good name for your business. Content serialization is what will keep your customers coming back for more if you give them high-quality content.
The beauty of content serialization is the fact that it works both ways: for you, as a content marketer, it means that you wouldn’t have to worry about an article being too lengthy or underdeveloped. You can lay out a plan of how to tackle a vast topic and break it down into a series of smaller pieces of writing. For the customers, it would mean that your website can be a one-stop place where they can explore different aspects of the subject in detail.
Additionally, delivering high-quality content in the form of series over the course of time will build anticipation – if the customers liked the first article in the series and you already announced the second, they will be eager to see what else you have to teach them.
A good content serialization strategy can spread over a longer period of time, as much as you need to cover all angles of the topic. This brings us to the next lesson…
Don’t “Milk It For All It’s Worth”
After the original Harry Potter series was wrapped up, people were hoping that the wizarding world would live to see another day. And it did – J. K. Rowling wrote two additional books that were made into the two-part theater play Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. This sparked up a lot of speculations that the franchise will carry on following the stories of Harry’s children. However, back in April, J. K. Rowling closed all room for discussion by stating that there will definitely be no more Harry Potter books.
NEW YORK – NOV 10, 2016: J.K. Rowling attends the premiere “Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them”
As much as fans were disappointed, this is actually a smart move to make, and you should keep that in mind – when you said all you had to say it is time to stop. It doesn’t mean that it’s a good idea to expand your content with more articles on the same topic just because your initial content serialization was a major success. In fact, that can have a negative effect. If you “milk” the content too far, the end result will be poor quality, low value, repetitive content that will ruin the success you had earlier.
Instead, do what J. K. Rowling did – find a related topic that your customers will love. You never know, it might be hiding in your existing content in the form of a single sentence.
Explore New Possibilities, But Don’t Forget Where It All Started
In Fantastic Beasts, we see a completely different world than the one in the Harry Potter series. We are no longer playing Quidditch in Hogwarts and trying to avoid Moaning Myrtle; we are now out on the street of the U.S. chasing the magical creatures and trying to stop them from interfering with the muggle world. Even though Harry Potter is not mentioned in Fantastic Beasts even once (clearly, since he wasn’t even born!) we can still feel the connection between the two. The returning characters such as Albus Dumbledore and Nagini are enough for us to relate to something we are already familiar with.
The story is the same with your content marketing strategy. If you had a successful series of content and now you are exploring a different, yet related topic, don’t miss the opportunity to establish a link between the two. Cite paragraphs from the existing content and do internal linking, so if customers want to go back and remind themselves of what they’ve previously read, they can easily do it with one click. In this way, your old content will continue to live on and your new content will have an additional back up.
Don’t despair about not being admitted to Hogwarts – being a content marketer is basically the same thing as being a wizard. You need to be crafty, creative, fearless and learn how to fight against the Dark Arts (or as we say in the muggle world – the competition). Serializing your content can works as smooth as saying LeviOsa (not LeviosA!) if you put your mind into it and think quality before quantity.
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