Did you know that even movies can be an excellent source of learning and inspiration? You read that right. More than 83% of young adults love to watch movies, not only for entertainment but also as an engaging source of information. In this piece, we’ll discuss a few marketing movies that present a holistic view of marketing in real life.
As marketing is a field that’s constantly evolving, from traditional advertising to network, affiliate, and video marketing, there’s a lot to uncover. Whether you’re an expert marketer or a novice, there is a lot to gain about contemporary marketing from certain movies. So marketers, brace yourselves! Here is a compilation of the top 7 fun movies that teach you the best marketing tips.
We have selected the top marketing movies that will inspire you. The way they influence you varies depending on the film. For instance, Brad Pitt and Jonah Hill’s 2011 film Moneyball will motivate you to look for other ways to succeed, even with a limited budget. Every film on the list will make an original and enduring impression; read on.
Starring: Jesse Eisenberg, Andrew Garfield, Justin Timberlake, Armie Hammer
IMDb rating: 7.8/10
Release: 12 November 2010
Harvard undergrad and computer whiz Mark Zuckerberg (Jesse Eisenberg) started developing a novel idea in 2003. Easy to guess what it was – Facebook, the world’s largest social network.
Fast-forward six years, and Zuckerberg became one of the youngest millionaires in history. Still, his extraordinary success caused him to face personal and legal issues when he was sued twice, one of which involved his old friend Andrew Garfield. Watch this stirring movie to see how Zuckerberg became a brand in himself.
In this marketing movie, Mark Zuckerberg is shown as a bright, envious, and socially uncomfortable person who wants to replicate the social dynamics of college life online. With everything considered, it offers a sales representative and marketers some critical lessons.
Every sales representative should start at the top of the sales funnel and try to stay within the conversion stage. If not, this, at best, makes you appear desperate and, at worst, drives away the prospect. The lesson? Marketing is a process that requires steady and continuous momentum.
It also gets interesting towards the end as you discover the inspiration behind the founding of a $59 billion brand, the founders’ thought processes, the steps they followed, and all the ups and downs.
Starring: Michael Keaton, Nick Offerman, John Carroll Lynch
IMDb rating: 7.2/10
Release: 16 December 2016
This is the real-life story of how Mac (John Carroll Lynch) and Dick McDonald (Nick Offerman), who were operating a burger joint in 1950s Southern California, met Ray Kroc (Michael Keaton), a struggling salesman from Illinois. The story’s baseline is how the brothers’ quick method of preparing food attracted Kroc, who spotted a franchise potential. Soon after, Kroc positions himself to take over the business from the brothers and build a multibillion-dollar empire.
In The Founder, Ray Kroc (a milkshake machine salesman) builds McDonald’s, a modest but incredibly successful burger joint, and turns it into the world’s biggest fast-food chain. However, despite his incredible perseverance and will to propel McDonald’s into the chain restaurant hall of fame, Kroc’s depraved morality and cunning tactics are disgusting.
To make his business successful, he franchised it and used dubious commercial tactics that conflate ethical right and wrong. For this reason, marketers ought to watch this marketing movie, which serves as a mirror.
This film is crucial for sales representatives because it stresses the importance of rightly drafting agreements each time they negotiate with one another. A sales order ought to benefit both of the parties making the purchase.
Starring: Brad Pitt, Robin Wright & Jonah Hill
IMDb rating: 7.6/10
Release: 24 February 2012
Billy Beane (Brad Pitt), the general manager at Oakland A’s, has an epiphany one day. He realises that his team’s prevailing baseball data needs to be corrected. Upon meeting with Peter Brand (Jonah Hill), an Ivy League graduate, he gets ready to question established customs and signs players the scouts have written off as defective.
Occasionally, the players immediately coming to mind are not the most valuable. Success will be decided by analysis and data-driven action, much like inbound marketing. In sales, data is essential for making well-informed decisions on managing and expanding your staff. With this new strategy, your team can experience HIT success.
The film is an excellent example of how efficient competitor analysis may increase sales even without a large budget. Want to surpass the competitors? Get your hands on data and analyse them!
Starring: Michael Fassbender, Kate Winslet & Seth Rogen
IMDb rating: 7.2/10
Release: 23 October 2015
Co-founders of Apple Inc. Steve Jobs (Michael Fassbender) and Steve “Woz” Wozniak prepare to introduce the first Macintosh in 1984 amid mounting public anticipation. It then goes on to show how Jobs left the company he initially co-founded. After being dismissed, Jobs founds NeXT Inc. and prepares to introduce a new computer model in 1988. The movie ends when Jobs is back at Apple Inc. ten years later, and the iMac is about to revolutionise the business again.
This movie shows that products do not sell themselves. Consumers must be persuaded that they require your items. However, as tobacco lobbyist Nick Naylor says, moral boundaries may be stretched until they are, at most, hazy.
By taking on Steve Jobs’ persona as a marketer or salesperson, you can gain much insight into his ability to discern what customers desire.
This film on sales and marketing delves into the rationale behind his decisions, providing us with an inside look into the thoughts of a sales and marketing prodigy and their approaches to managing staff, work-life balance, and employee relations.
Starring: Will Smith, Thandiwe Newton & Jaden Smith
IMDb rating: 8.0/10
Release: 15 December 2006
Chris Gardner (Will Smith), a single parent, finds life difficult. After being forced out of their flat, he is left alone and without a place to live with his small son, Jaden Christopher Syre Smith. Chris finally gets an internship with a famous brokerage business, but it is an unpaid post. Fighting to make a better life for himself and his son, the two must live in shelters and face numerous obstacles. Despite this, Chris never gives up.
Every sales representative must maintain a highly positive and driven attitude. In the film, Gardner realises that no matter how hard he works, he will never be able to make as many sales calls, but he never stops trying. You will experience the joyful peaks and heartbreaking troughs of his life as a jobless, homeless intern raising his five-year-old son alone.
As customers, most people usually find it repulsive when salespeople display signs of anger, depression, or disappointment; however, there is one man who, despite numerous hours of unsatisfactory work, never wavers in his cheerful, upbeat demeanour – the salesperson. That’s your lesson!
Starring: Demi Moore, David Duchovny & Amber Heard
IMDb rating: 6.4/10
Release: 16 April 2010
After moving to an upper-class and posh suburb, Kate, Steve, and their children quickly become well-known for their fashionable lifestyle. However, their neighbours remain blind to the reality of this picture-perfect family.
The film centres on a family of four and their comparatively typical life in a rich neighbourhood in the United States. They look like the perfect family on the outside. In reality, they aren’t even a true family. They are marketers and actors using what the movie calls “hidden marketing” or “self-marketing.”
Based on sales and marketing tactics, The Joneses is arguably one of the most unusual marketing movies. The plot twist happens when it is revealed that the family is a gang of skilled salespersons who use their connections to market goods to the locals. Watching this movie will make you see influencer marketing in action.
The plot comes to a close when Steve starts marketing things to beat suburban ennui and discovers better sales. Steve uses a fundamental sales technique in his plot – participating in the community! Sales representatives must be close to the customers for the products they sell.
Starring: Chris Pratt, Will Arnett, Elizabeth Banks, Will Ferrell & Liam Neeson
IMDb rating: 7.7/10
Release: 7 February 2014
The average, rule-abiding LEGO figure Emmet (Chris Pratt) is wrongly recognised as the remarkable Special, who holds the secret to saving the planet. He is drafted into a bizarre group of people trying to thwart Will Ferrell’s (the evil tyrant) intentions to take over the globe. Emmet will give it his all even though; regrettably, he is utterly—and hilariously—unprepared for such a task.
The well-known toy company uses The Lego Movie as a powerful marketing weapon in and of itself. Consider this: the film bears the brand’s name literally —Lego appears in roughly 95% of the scenes. The LEGO Movie is the epitome of content marketing; it demonstrates what happens when we delve deeply into the creative potential inside our teams and our products to “just have some fun with it.”
In other words, The Lego Movie’s clever use of indirect marketing is what makes it so inspirational. After the film, the company developed several toy sets depicting different movie sequences and an endless array of other items, such as shirts, notepads, video games, etc.
It’s interesting for marketers, particularly those working at creative agencies, to watch such marketing movies. You either find a strategy for your next campaign or get insights to level up your game.