Gini Dietrich

Star Wars, the PESO Model, and a Challenge for You

By: Gini Dietrich | March 3, 2020 | 
0

Star Wars and the PESO ModelIt’s good to have hobbies. And it’s good to have dreams.

But sometimes the combination can border on ludicrous. 

Here is a Reddit post created a few weeks ago by a true blue Star Wars Fan:

I love Star Wars and I’d love my kids to be able to enjoy it in the future. So I spent the last 1.5 years doing a data analysis of 19 movie franchises and proving Star Wars lost a potential $20 billion (also about how Marvel crushed it). In total, it’s 19 issues and 30,000 words.

Although Disney has already made some cool changes, I believe they’d still find the insights I found very valuable to make the next movies into amazing blockbusters everybody loves (like the Originals did).

MY GOAL is to reach Bob Iger, Disney’s CEO, and/or management team so they read it. Do you guys have any help or ideas to help me achieve this? I appreciate it.

Now, I am in no way going to share an opinion on whether or not Star Wars as a franchise needs saving (cough, it does, cough), but the challenge posed by this Redditor is an interesting one, and it got some fascinating responses.

We’re going to talk about them—and about how the PESO model might help the writer achieve his goals.

The Star Wars Superfan Story

I’m not a Reddit fan.

Its design and user experience leave me rattled and I hate how mean people are on there.

Sure, I understand that’s how the internet works, but I prefer to stay in my bubble of the Spin Sucks community where everyone is professional and kind and fun.

But I also have found some great gems on Reddit, when I’m feeling brave and will venture into the subreddit world…

…and when I stumble upon a 30,000 word dissertation about all of the problems with the Star Wars franchise.

A Star Wars superfan has done a massive analysis of various movie franchises and created a plan for how Disney could generate an extra $20 billion.

He wants to get this thesis in front of Bob Iger, the CEO of Disney. 

Now, most of the ideas we’ll discuss here today might somehow get someone at Disney to read it, but that’s not REALLY the goal. 

The goal is for them to take it seriously and consider it—and to put his ideas into play.

The biggest challenge I see with all of this is he put it all out there for the entire world to see.

I live in a world where people steal intellectual property all the time.

Some do it out of complete ignorance—OK, most do. But some do it intentionally.

And this guy has put his ideas at serious risk.

That aside, there is an opportunity here to reach his goals.

The challenge is a fun one and it’d be fun to work on to get this dissertation in front of Bob Iger.

Of course, before taking on the work, I’d want to read all 30,000 words to see if they have any merit or if the guy is completely bonkers (or both).

But, for the sake of using it as a case study, let’s say it has merit and it should get in front of Iger.

Will Shared and Earned Media Work?

In the Reddit thread, he got some interesting (some good and some not so good) advice.

The top result (the one that other users gave the most points to) was:

LinkedIn outreach. Message 100 people at Disney corporate head office. If one person reads it you have a 1% conversion rate. But you’re gonna need an enticing message.

Maybe.

Think about how much you enjoy unsolicited LinkedIn messages.

Now multiply that by one hundred thousand because you’re the CEO of Disney.

Sure, you might get one person to read and respond, but it’s likely not THE one and, in the meantime, they’re in their leadership meeting comparing notes about this crazy guy who messaged them all about his 30,000 word dissertation and not taking it seriously.  

Here is another solution with a little more meat to it.

Write a feature and pitch it to magazines and websites. Press release it to mags and websites.

This is a straightforward, traditional media relations approach.

What About #WhyStarWarsSucks?

This commenter had a few other suggestions as well, one of which I thought warranted a little more discussion:

Share it on Twitter and get a mate to retweet it with #WhyStarWarsSucks.

Now we’re talking about trying to generate some shared media as well.

The hashtag is a clever suggestion, and not only because our blog post on hashtags last year identified #StarWars as the most popular movie hashtag of all time.

Star Wars, as anyone who has ever spent any time on the internet knows, is a bit of a polarizing topic, and the hashtag suggested here, #WhyStarWarsSucks, could very well work.

At the same time, I looked it up and there are only seven tweets using the hashtag and the latest one was from 2016. 

While jumping on a popular hashtag is a solid tactic as part of a shared media strategy, this isn’t one of those.

Also, I don’t know about you, but if there were a #whyspinsuckssucks hashtag, I’m not sure we’d a) pay attention to it; or b) give it any merit.

If he wants to use this as a tactic, he’d be better off jumping on something that people actually see and use.

In reality, of course, even if he got 1,000 friends to share the hashtag, what’s the point?

In the chatter that is Twitter, the likelihood that someone who matters is going to a) read this, b) take it seriously, or c) see it at all is next to none.

What follows THOSE suggestions are several admonitions from Redditors to proofread delivered with varying degrees of kindness.

Or Is He Better Off Using the PESO Model?

Before I turn you loose on saving Star Wars yourselves, I want to share one more suggestion from the marketing hivemind of Reddit.

I would create a short snapshot (5-10 page report with visuals – people love graphs) of the thesis, leaving out enough big points, but alluding to them, to create a “cliffhanger” of sorts. This is what I do to get people to buy lengthy research reports from my company. You need to make them feel like the data is valuable enough for them to need to buy (or in this case, read).

This is a solid suggestion.

This Redditor is using one of my favorite tactics—taking a gigantic piece of content and repurposing the heck out of it. 

This is using the PESO model in all its glory (with a few tweaks).

No Disney executive, heck almost no human being, is going to read a 30,000 word dissertation on why their franchise sucks.

But they will read a treatment or a short report, complete with visuals, should it land on their desk.

And the likelihood of something like that landing on their desk is far better than the full piece being seen.

If this Star Wars fan were to make it incredibly easy for someone at Disney to flip through a treatment or report, it is far more likely to move up the chain and reach Iger’s office.

Or maybe it doesn’t need to go there at all, but it gets the attention of the executive in charge of creating the new Star Wars scripts.

That person could easily ask this Star Wars fan to come in and present his ideas.

It might even get him a job on the writing staff.

No one really knows—and I can guarantee it’s nearly impossible to break into that world.

But to have a chance, publishing a 30,000 word dissertation on Medium and hoping Bob Iger will read it is not the way to go about it.

A PESO Model Challenge For You

Which brings me to a challenge for you.

As you know, we’ve been deep in learning mode for the past month as we celebrated all things PESO model—and we’d love to involve you in the fun.

Here’s the mission, should you choose to accept it.

If this passionate Redditor came to you for a comprehensive communications plan to meet his goal of getting his thesis in front of the CEO of Disney, how would you do it?

Let’s assume for the sake of this challenge that he has an unlimited budget, a one-year time-frame, and would be open to any and all suggestions without argument. 

We’ll start a thread in the Spin Sucks Community where you can comment with your ideas. It’ll be fun! We’ll eventually pull together everyone’s ideas and write a blog post to help this guy out.

Watch our FREE masterclass and learn how to implement the PESO model to achieve unparalleled communications results. 

Watch PESO 2.0 Masterclass NOW

Image by www_slon_pics from Pixabay

About Gini Dietrich


Gini Dietrich is the founder, CEO, and author of Spin Sucks, host of the Spin Sucks podcast, and author of Spin Sucks (the book). She is the creator of the PESO Model and has crafted a certification for it in partnership with Syracuse University. She has run and grown an agency for the past 15 years. She is co-author of Marketing in the Round, co-host of Inside PR, and co-host of The Agency Leadership podcast.