Iconic imagery, gory and brutal finishers, a cheesy movie franchise and unforgettable characters. The Cult classic fighting game of Mortal Kombat is a creative masterpiece.
I was never any good at the games. It took far too long to commit the combinations to muscle memory. I enjoyed playing it casually though and doing the ‘fatality’ special moves.
Some of these were devilish in design, I can imagine the developers having a right laugh when coming up with these artistic ways of killing.
Watch some of them on YouTube. 18+ only of course.
Well it got me thinking….
There’re unique aspects to these characters that can teach a marketing lesson or two, I’ll start with some of my favourite characters…
The poster boy of the franchise. The demonic ninja fuelled with the burning rage of his dead clan and family. He is an entity of pure vengeance and will stop at nothing to get revenge. He blames Sub Zero for these deaths (mistakenly) and pursues him relentlessly across the planes of existence.
He isn’t good nor evil. He is a classic anti-hero and won’t hesitate to beat on ‘good’ and ‘bad’ guys alike.
This coupled with his awesome ninja aesthetic makes him a fan favourite.
He also has one of the most iconic weapons of all time. His spear (Kunai) on a rope.
You might have heard his catchphrase when he throws this rope to hook his targets in.
“GET OVER HERE!”
But yeah, awesome character. I guess what he brings to the table is that a good headline is probably the most important part of any piece of copy.
It has to be like Scorpions Kunai and plunge deep into your prospects chest and pull them in so you can unleash a deadly combo that results in them giving you their hard earned cash and I don’t mean mugging them.
The big boy of Outworld. This terrifying hulk wears a samurai skull helmet, big spiky shoulder pads and swings around a huge hammer for fun. He’s also a sorcerer and can absorb souls to make him even more powerful.
He’s the primary antagonist for most of the series as he is always trying to invade Earthrealm. What a prick.
This guy is known for his dickishness. He’s brutal, callous, nasty, mean, you name it. He has no time for anything but to conquer all the realms and rule over them as a god. You can say a lot about our mate Shao, but you can’t say he isn’t ambitious.
Shao teaches us to be relentless in pursuing our goals. He also teaches authority. For good copy to convert, you need to position yourself and your product or service as an authority in its niche. If you’re running a cleaning company, it’s a good idea to have posts on ‘how to’ guides or give away free video demonstrations or newsletters.
That way when people think of cleaners in your local area, you’re the first one to pop into their heads.
‘Shao Kahn Cleaning Company’. Has a ring to it, no?
Coolest name ever. Apart from maybe Sylvester Stallone or Mel Gibson. Come to think of it, I might call my first born son Shang Tsung. He’ll either thank me forever or curse me til I die.
This is another one of the ‘bad’ dudes in Mortal Kombat and was the final boss in the first game.
He’s a sorcerer who loves nothing more than to consume souls and shapeshift into those he has absorbed. He’s also much more cunning, sophisticated and intelligent than Shao Kahn.
He loves nothing more than masterminding evil plans and unleashing evil spells to unleash on his foes, from skull fireballs to giant flaming cobras.
Now I’m not saying you should absorb your prospects souls, but you should know them well enough that if you could, you can shapeshift into them at will.
You need to be as meticulous and as cunning as Shang Tsung, researching, digging and absorbing everything you can about your prospects like you’re feeding on their very soul.
Then when you craft your sneaky shapeshifting copy, it’s like you’re speaking to the prospect directly. You probably won’t be in the target market yourself, so you need to take on a little bit of Shang Tsung to get inside their heads.
Our other ninja poster boy of the MK series. He was originally just scorpion in blue garments in the first game but slowly but surely was built into the ice cold killer he is today.
Grand master of the Lin Kuei clan, Sub-Zero can harness the powers of frost and ice. From shooting projectiles to freeze his enemies in place or by producing clones of himself to dupe his attackers into freezing themselves, this master snowman builder has it all.
He’s an all round good guy. He always shows up to help the main cast when needed and defends Earth Realm to his last breath. High 5 for Subbers.
So, as you can imagine Sub-Zero and Scorpion go hand in hand.
Once you’ve got your Scorpion Kunai spear hooked into your prospect and got them to click through to your copy, you need to freeze them there.
Every single line of your copy needs to lead your prospect down the page. You need to keep their eyes frozen and not towards the back button or X.
Do this by informative and entertaining, or even better, both.
Then if you’re persuasive enough, have the call to action where you instruct them on what to do next.
Only then are they free from your Sub-Zero ice powers.
(I’ve just noticed every single one of these characters begins with the letter ‘S’. Let’s mix it up a bit.)
A member of the giant, four armed, dragon-like race, the Shokan, Goro is a towering monster of a being with supernatural strength and agility. Layered in thick muscle with a warriors top knot, he truly is a spectacular creature.
Relying on outrageous brute strength and unnatural speed for his size, he pummeled his opposition without mercy.
Goro won 9 Mortal Kombat tournaments in a row and was undefeated for over 500 years. He was one of the legends of the universe.
One of Shao Kahn’s favourite warriors, Goro almost conquered Outworld but luckily Liu Kang defeated him in the 10th tournament. Drinks are on us Liu.
Although he was defeated in the end, 500 years isn’t a bad run. Goro had the consistency we all need.
Consistency is key when it comes to Copywriting. Everything should link up. If your headline says ‘Learn the fat-loss secret of a 4-armed dragon warrior who almost conquered earth’ then you god damn better reveal that in your body copy.
Nothing gets the back button pressed quicker than scammy, inconsistent, clickbait headings.
Make sure you take a leaf out of Goro’s book and be consistent.
I could go on all night with these, maybe I’ll do a part 2 down the line, there’s loads of unique characters in this great series that I’m missing out on. But if you become a super strong hybrid of Scorpion, Shao Kahn, Shang Tsung, Sub-Zero and Goro, you’ll fatality your competitors no hassle.
P.S If you need a copy sorcerer to help you absorb more cash from prospects or you just want to absorb their souls because you’re an evil necromancer then contact me through the site or on firstname.lastname@example.org