Slay The Dragons In Your Business

By: Dave Dee on: December 13th, 2012 11 Comments

Tomorrow the movie The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey opens in theaters.

Based on J. R. R. Tolkien’s fantasy novel The Hobbit, the movie is basically about killing dragons and finding treasures. (Great metaphor for business, wouldn’t you agree?)

There’s been a lot of hype and excitement surrounding the movie, so let’s dig deeper and see what you can use to slay the dragons in your business.  For instance, things like how to sell more and market better so that you can find the treasures in your business…

More customers, money, time, and the freedom and flexibility you’ve always wanted.

In the Ultimate Celebrity Promotions Swipe File, Dan Kennedy says, “Celebrity is the most powerful marketing force.” People are obsessed with celebrities and can’t get enough news about them. Incorporating celebrity into your promotions is something that works in virtually every market with any product or service.

Denny’s Restaurant tapped into the celebrity of The Hobbit movie, scoring a lot of free press in the process, by creating a Hobbit-inspired menu that will run through January.  The menu basically has the same items, only they’ve changed the names to include Hobbit-related terms and characters like the Hobbit Slam, Gandalf Gobble, and Frodo’s Pot Roast skillet.

To seduce people back to Denny’s and increase sales, Denny’s also made collectable Hobbit playing cards. You can collect up to 12 different playing cards. Plus they engaged their audience further by creating a treasure hunt. Placing QR codes on their placemats, restaurant goers can use the codes to find additional content.

What fun celebrity-related engagement ideas can you think of to skyrocket your sales and gain instant attention?

People love to have fun and be entertained. No surprise there. And, of course, Denny’s isn’t the only company having fun and cashing in on the Hobbit celebrity factor. The airline Air New Zealand is featuring crew members dressed in Middle-earth garb in a Hobbit-themed safety video. Branding themselves as the “Airline of the Middle of the Earth,” they took something that could be boring and monotonous and made it entertaining.  (Not to mention they’ve already received 9.9 million hits on YouTube.)

Getting customers to read about insurance, taxes or how-to or safety instructions, for example, might be important, but typically they can be rather boring—which means stuff like this might not get read even though everyone should read them.

How can you make something that is dry, but important in your business more entertaining?

In a review I read about The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, the reviewer said the last two hours were “full of cliffhangers.” Presumably this is because another Hobbit movie is expected to be released in December 2014 (with the third and final chapter arriving in December 2015.)

In your business, the single most expensive thing to do is getting a new customer. That means that once you get a customer, you want to do everything you can to hold on to them, right?

In fact, Dan Kennedy taught me that you want to spend a lot of attention on turning them into the best possible asset they can be.

In How to Create Personality in Copy, Dan talks about the reasons why some customers become “customers for life,” none of which are obvious. For example, you will not keep customers for life based on the value of the education or information you give them.  What keeps them coming back for more is that they see you as an interesting person.

By creating a relationship with your customers, when you write emails, letters, and other ongoing copy to your customers, clients and patients, using cliffhangers in your story will compel them to come back to find out what happens.

How can you start including cliffhangers in your marketing stories to keep customers coming back?

You don’t have to use all of these in your business, but incorporating at least some of them will help you slay the dragons that plague you. Imagine how using them can lead to long awaited and even unexpected treasures (like creating a viral video such as Air New Zealand.)

So think about how you can use these in your business to get the results you desire. Your comments are always appreciated, what other tips can you learn from The Hobbit?

NOTE: If you like this blog and the tips and strategies provided here…but haven’t checked out the GKIC Success Club at go there now and enroll.  Members just need to enter their e-mail address and password (if you don’t know it you can enter a new one) and you can get into various groups and forums to learn what other members are doing, ask questions and share your best tips or go to one of my favorite forums “101 Best Marketing Campaigns of All Time”   If you aren’t a member yet…don’t worry, we’ll let you preview our membership for free for 60 days.  Just go to and you can then get instant access to the social site as well. 


Dave Dee is one of Dan Kennedy's most successful students. Dave saw Dan speak over 16 years ago at one of the Peter Lowe Success Events when he was a struggling magician. He bought Magnetic Marketing and as you will hear when he tells you his story, his life changed in less than 90 days. Dave became a very serious student of Dan's by attending my seminars, joining his coaching group and most of all from implementing what he learned. For more money-making marketing tips, tactics and strategies, go to

11 Responses

  1. Grant Pasay says:

    In Tolkien’s stories, you’ll notice Gandalf the wizard doesn’t always know everything about everything, nor is he capable of anything…yet that’s generally how others perceive him.

    And instead of exposing these facts, which would undermine the faith that others have in him, instead he moves ahead to the best of his abilities while figuring things out along the way.

    The same is true for entrepreneurs who position themselves as the expert. Others sometimes look to us like wizards that know everything about everything, and as being capable of anything.

    And instead of exposing that we don’t know everything (we’re certainly working on it, but definitely not there yet), and though we’re not capable of anything (we’re certainly developing our skills, but have much room for improvement), it’s best for us to keep all this to ourselves, to not worry about any insecurities we might have, to protect the faith others have in us, and move ahead to the best of our abilities while figuring things out along the way.

    Not quite ‘fake it until you make it,’ because we already know a lot (heck, we ARE experts at what we do in comparison to our clients’ abilities). So maybe something more like ‘You don’t know it all, but don’t blow it all by saying so y’all.’

  2. Stefan says:

    Great post
    I’m new here and wish I subscribe to your news letter sooner.
    Do you think this works for my new years fitness promo?
    Slay the fat and get fit with the hobbit Challege :-)

  3. Tim T says:

    Reminds me of a Seinfeld where George was working at Krueger’s. And in the meetings George tried to get a big laugh and when he did he decided to exit stage left from the meeting. So then Krueger fired everyone off the project except George because they were “borrinng”…. and he says that George was interesting and always kept him wanting more.

    This ties into the big bold line above: “What keeps them coming back for more is that they see you as an interesting person.”

    • Admin says:

      Great point, Tim. If your business is interesting/appealing to customers and profitable, your business is in good shape. Thanks for sharing

  4. AZMike says:


    I think what is great about movies like “The Hobbit” is the want factor; people want to keep the tale going, they want more of it in their lives(all the backend sale products). Sequels, etc. I love the merchandise that can create more income than the movie.

    But a big “want” that marketers can and should take advantage of is “the feeling of belonging to something BIGGER than themselves.” Help your customers and clients by making them a part of something.

  5. I love the take of the Hobbit as your business, and you must defend and conquer all enemies that stand in your way. I could not agree with you more about making your business interesting and fun. Denny’s with its middle earth menu and New Zeland Airlines making something as routine as flying interesting. Most businesses miss out on these fun takes on pop culture. I really enjoyed this blog and I will make sure to protect my business as I journey on into the future.

    • Admin says:

      Glad you liked this article and found it helpful!

  6. More Here says:

    This definitely solved my problem, thank you very much!

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