George Arthur Lareau, a small Phoenix-based book publisher (Sufi George Books), has made 50 animated cartoons promoting his books, and he’s still turning them out.
The cartoons all give a link or a direction either to a specific book, or to his web page, which in turn promotes his books.
Lareau is author of a dozen books and his primary marketing channel is amazon.com. He posts his cartoons on youtube.com.
He promotes vigorously, using software to post to search engines and directories, classified ads, ffa links, and other web pages. Using submission software, he can post around two million links weekly.
Lareau’s cartoons are a lesson in niche marketing, and a case study in themselves. They star Lareau’s alter ego called Sufi George.
The cartoon character is a seriously degenerate bumbling guru. He is a parody of the modern American male.
He hits on religion, politics, commerce, war, poverty, misery, and numerous other topics, but Sufi George’s constant and consuming interest…is blow jobs.
The Sufi George character is a metaphysical teacher of sorts, with a seriously flawed nature. The character is a rude, sarcastic, arrogant, insulting, politically incorrect iconoclast.
Lareau’s command of this character stems from his days as a Boston beatnik poet. Adding depth, the character is often a serious teacher, but he is always entertaining.
This particular niche is where Lareau feels at home, related to his target audience by several common interests.
Lareau believes that marketing media is shifting more and more to video. When a search engine lists its results, it’s the video listings that look tastiest, he says.
He chose making cartoons instead of camera videos because cartoons are even more attractive to viewers.
Further, although Lareau has substantial filmmaking experience, he says it is much easier to make cartoons, thanks to software, and they can be made more humourous than camera video.
When writing his cartoons, he pays attention to search words, and writes on those topics.
He says any hot topic, like cutting the military budget, or child abuse, will get searched for a lot on the search engines, and each will pull up a particular Sufi George cartoon. And of course, blow job is a popular search term.
Once that initial connection is made by watching one cartoon, many links are suddenly in place on youtube that make the cartoons very sticky. Other cartoons are offered automatically, and they are just one click away.
By making his cartoons progressively unfold as chapters in a novel, the cartoons keep viewers coming back for more. They want to follow the saga of this character.
The Sufi George cartoon character originated in Lareau’s three Sufi George Comix books, which he has now published as a single paperback.