Led Zeppelin is Sick!

By Ron Rosenberg

If you recognize Led Zeppelin:

You're over the age of 45 and grew up with this music.
You appreciate what's now known as "Classic Rock."

In case you don't know who's Robert Plant and Jimmy Page of Led Zeppelin, they are arguably one of the premier rock groups of the 1970s.

I'm sharing this with you not to reminisce about my youth or to complain that "they just don't make music like that any more..." but rather to share an interesting observation that may help you in your own marketing efforts.

My daughter was home from college for the Thanksgiving break, and was telling me about the 11-11-11 Heavy Metal Special on the VH-1 network. Apparently, they had declared November 11, 2011 (11-11-11) as National Heavy Metal Day, and were running specials featuring some of the better-known bands of the genre.

She walked into the house, saw me in the kitchen, and announced: "Dad, Led Zeppelin is SICK! - I saw them on TV and the guitarist was incredible!" I had to agree, of course, since I grew up with that music - I even had a poster of Jimmy Page with the double-neck guitar in my dorm room in college.

When I asked her about the show they were featuring, she said it was in New York City during the band's 1977 tour.

I smiled, and told her that I was at that show. In fact, I said, we were sitting sixth row center...and that the show was so loud I had a ringing in my ears for the next week.

The fact that I was at that concert seemed to impress her more than, oh, say, the fact that we can afford to send her to college, but you accept admiration from your kids in any form you can get.

The interesting thing is that because this new generation was able to watch this concert now, they had the opportunity to discover what we already knew - this music is good.

But Page and Plant didn't invent good music. Ask them who their influences were, and they'll cite various blues and jazz artists, in much the same way that modern artists cite Eric Clapton as a major influence, and Clapton reveres musicians like Muddy Waters and B.B. King.

The point is that despite what we'd like to think, there's very little that's actually new.

The people I study marketing with draw their influence from people like the late Gary Halbert. Halbert learned his trade by studying classic direct-response pioneers like Robert Collier and John Caples.

Whatever your field, there are literally generations of "masters" who have paved the way and laid the groundwork for the current "state of the art." If you're going to be a true student of your chosen field, then you need to study the history and roots of that field.

After all, you don't become Led Zeppelin overnight!