Victorian zombies have class, at least they do in the popular mashup of Jane Austen‘s classic novel Pride and Prejudice. Zombies you say? Yes. Zombies. This contemporary rewriting of Austen‘s work is inscribe deeply within the 21st century, where open source culture is redefining the way we create, find inspiration and work. Internet culture, and to a great extent social media culture have been influenced by this way of thinking. Sharing and exchanging, reusing and reappropriating, adding and substracting, collaborating is at the basis of blog writing, online discussions and comments. By contributing online, we’re adding materials to a massive global mashup.
So, dear marketers, what can you learn from victorian zombies?
1- Be Open Source
More than ever before, it is essential that your thinking and materials be accessible to as many people as possible. Don’t barricade your ideas behind closed doors such as forms or password-protected areas. Let them free. Seth Grahame-Smith was able to add a twist to Pride and Prejudice since the novel has entered the public domain. This would never have been possible had the novel been protected by copyright laws. By making your content accessible to anyone, you’re engaging with people and creating discussions, which is at the basis of social media.
2- Don’t Be Afraid to Reappropriate Materials
But don’t forget to give credits where its due! Video and music mashups have been popular for a while – think Girl Talk for instance. Take something that exists, put your spin to it and you end up with a new concept or idea. A real estate website using Google Maps to display its listings is a form of re-appropriation just as writing a blog post about thoughts from another blog post would be. Or retweeting on Twitter someone’s content while adding thoughts or insights. Social media is fueled by everyone’s contribution to our local and global cultures, be it your opinion, your ideas and thoughts, your creative inputs or simply your attention. Social media is a mashup culture to which we are all adding to everyday, every instant.
Zombies have made it to Austen‘s victorian world thanks to our mashup culture. Don’t forget to let them in your next content venture, they’ll do you more good than harm!