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Mike Lieberman, CEO and Chief Revenue ScientistFri, Aug 26, 2016 6 min read

Inbound Marketing Is a Lot Like Stranger Things



We hope by now that you’ve watched the 80s homage, spectacularly spooky and nerdy Netflix Original show Stranger Things. If not, grab yourself some Eggos and spend this weekend watching all eight episodes (in a row!) and you can thank us later. It’s currently at the number one spot in IMDB’s list of most popular TV series. One thing is never just one thing in this world of dark forces and cover-ups, and that got us thinking. We found that Stranger Things is strangely just like inbound marketing. No really, stick with us here. But be warned – spoilers ahead!

How_Inbound_Marketing_Is_a_Lot_Like_Netflix_Original_Stranger_Things1.jpg [via Netflix]


The Upside Down

At the beginning of the season our beloved characters looked at the world in one way. One could say that their view was one-dimensional (pun intended). But underneath all of that Dungeons & Dragons and Joy Division lurks a dangerous world: the Upside Down. No one wants to be stuck in the Upside Down; it’s a terrible place that is a shadow of the world we know.

We see the Upside Down as a metaphor for the old way of selling. People get unwittingly trapped in the old way of selling, where sales reps must spend all of their time cold calling prospects and companies have to spend tons of money on print ads and commercials. This outbound method of selling is outdated, disruptive, and ineffective. Once you’re stuck selling like that it’s hard to find the interdimensional door that can lead you out of that cold, cold place.

How_Inbound_Marketing_Is_a_Lot_Like_Netflix_Original_Stranger_Things6.png [via Netflix]



Will is trapped in the Upside Down. He is afraid and doesn’t know what to do. He is missing and his friends will do anything to find him and return him to safety.

At SalesHub, our new clients are a lot like Will. Many clients know they are trapped in the old way of selling and need to find a way out, but they just can’t do it on their own. SalesHub will stop at nothing to save our clients from the old way of selling.

How_Inbound_Marketing_Is_a_Lot_Like_Netflix_Original_Stranger_Things5.jpg [via Netflix]



The creature lurking in the Upside Down is the Demogorgon, so dubbed for its likeness to the powerful demon prince from Dungeons & Dragons. He feasts on people who are stuck in the Upside Down and once you’re in his sights, it’s hard to escape.

Think of the Demogorgon as an outdated website. In today’s day and age, an outdated website is a nightmare for any business. It can trap your business in the Upside Down (the old way of selling) and you might not be able to find your way back to profitability. Be very, very afraid of the Demogorgon. He’s not good for sales. Plus he eats people.

How_Inbound_Marketing_Is_a_Lot_Like_Netflix_Original_Stranger_Things7.png [via Netflix]



In our opinion, Eleven is the star of Stranger Things. She is honest (“friends don’t tell lies”) and has powers like no one else. She has psychokinetic gifts that allow her to do incredible things. Sure there are people who are trying to change her and use her for their own evil plans, but she gravitates towards the good people in the world.

How_Inbound_Marketing_Is_a_Lot_Like_Netflix_Original_Stranger_Things3.jpg [via Netflix]

Let’s compare Eleven to inbound marketing as it too can do incredible things. If used wisely, inbound marketing can elevate your business and help you gain an edge over the competition. Like Eleven’s ability to hear what people are thinking and find people when no one else can, inbound marketing agencies pay close attention to customers and prospects and identify and define buyer personas in order to speak to the right audience and attract the right people. Inbound marketing pros join forces to attract customers and generate leads using websites, social media, content, and other online assets. Agencies also use reporting and data to track and analyze progress, make improvements, and solve problems. Like Eleven, inbound marketing has the power to stop people in their tracks and make them pee their pants.

Once you understand inbound marketing, you know you need it in order to complete your mission. By making improvements every step of the way, inbound marketing will help you reach your goals and succeed in the end. Be advised, you may need to feed it great marketing content instead of Eggos.

How_Inbound_Marketing_Is_a_Lot_Like_Stranger_Things.jpg [via Netflix]


The Three Most Amazing Kids Ever

Mike, Dustin, and Lucas are determined to save their friend Will from the Upside Down. They are a team of boys with a keen interest in science and a lot of heart. They form an unlikely friendship with Eleven and know that she is the key to finding Will. They all work together to rescue Will so he can be reunited with his family.

We think that this stellar team is a lot like an inbound marketing agency. At SalesHub, we use inbound marketing (like they use Eleven) to save clients (Will) from the old way of selling (aka the Upside Down) and their outdated website (Demogorgon) so they can drive sales and be successful.

How_Inbound_Marketing_Is_a_Lot_Like_Netflix_Original_Stranger_Things2.jpg [via Netflix]

Can you draw any more similarities between Stranger Things and inbound marketing? We’d love to hear them in the comments! “Don’t keep this curiosity door locked!”



Mike Lieberman, CEO and Chief Revenue Scientist

Mike is the CEO and Chief Revenue Scientist at Square 2. He is passionate about helping people turn their ordinary businesses into businesses people talk about. For more than 25 years, Mike has been working hand-in-hand with CEOs and marketing and sales executives to help them create strategic revenue growth plans, compelling marketing strategies and remarkable sales processes that shorten the sales cycle and increase close rates.