Thursday, July 26, 2007

Harry Potter and Bookworms from the Muggle-world

Who will be awake in dark hours of the night, with gold rimmed glasses, reading a book heavier than bible, covering herself, with thick jackets, under a mosquito net? Definitely, not my sister, I thought. The girl who would throw the broom stick and walk away has started giving it due respects. The fairy tale had given an added zing to everything she does now.

But ten years ago, a lady sat, gloomy and focused, along with her daughter at Nicholson's café at Edinburgh, and was busy scribbling in her notebook, whenever a spurt of creative imagination entered her mind.

In her own words,

"The feeling of who I was badly damaged by suddenly finding myself a single parent on benefits". "So I wrote to protect my sanity. I have always written and so it was a way of continuing to be me, despite all the ghastly circumstances."

Joanne Rowling and her daughter Jessica became regulars in the café. It was difficult for her to get the first copy of the book printed and published. Now, when the record-books swell, counting the numbers, of Harry Potter books sold, the smile never fades, from her face.

The "Harry Potter" fans where waiting for a climax between Lord Voldemort and him. The loose threads in the story slowly began to entangle themselves in the web, when the 4th book in the series came out.

The magical characters in the book became characters in reel and the films became Hollywood money grossers. Jo, as J.K Rowling is often called, was basking in the warmth of fans, and had already been a billionaire. But the plot was already laid in the spoiled curse. A speculation was created before the launch of the penultimate book that Harry would die! - How clever was the publishers! It raised the anxiety level and curiosity of Potter fans.

The 7th and penultimate book in the "Potter series" was selling at the rate of 220 copies a minute, during the first 24 hours of its launch in Tesco stalls in UK. All the other books in the series had been in best sellers' list, with more than 300 million copies being sold. they were also translated into more than 60 languages. Out of 13 million printed copies of " Deathly Hallows", more than 2 million copies are now in the possession of the book fans.

The launch of " Harry Potter" books were often backed with promotional campaigns. A host of celebrations ( 300 events in Canada alone ) were also conducted to promote the books. The fans have also become crazy about "Hogwarts School" apparatus, that many toys were also made on the basis of story line. Being sceptical about the fame, it was also alleged to be promoting witchcraft.

Chrysler, which was finding it quite interesting had launched a combined promotion in 2001. Coke, which did not want fall behind came out with "Live the Magic" campaign with Harry, which attracted criticism. Gary Ruskin, executive director at advertising monitor Commercial Alert, remarked "Coke has transformed Harry Potter into a marketing wizard."

All said and done, what is in it for us to learn?
We have to believe in our inner talents. Our imagination is worth our life. If it isn't a book, it can be a popular advertising campaign. A word from mouth! - Yes, word of mouth marketing has to be taken seriously. Understand the senses, if it gives you, hardly any vibration, it is neither likely to influence others. Go forward to meet your customers (Rowling set an example by reaching out to the kids, making them happy); they are the best friends. Will media, won't media? If you are runaway success, media is likely to follow you!
And what else like "Sherlock Holmes" of Arthur Conan Doyle, is "Harry" likely to be reborn?


Mark Stevenson said...

A good analysis of the potter phenomenon. But not complete. There are many things in this lesson that we have to learn but we simply refuse to.The ad world should take the success story of potter and co, as a case and draw some knowledge from it. Better late than never !!!

gururanganathan said...

excellent post!!!all i understand is marketing is simply confusing!!!

Anthara sharma said...

cool and nice work. as Mark says it is incomplete though ! Nice to see Adformula exploring new things rather than sticking to TV and Print ads only. Kudos !

Dileep said...

Thanks friends.. I was just highlighting that lot of PR activities also go with advertising!. and it is not jus advertising that boosts sales.

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