3 Digital Marketing Lessons from Arnold Schwarzenegger

12 Jun, 2021

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A Master of Digital Marketing 

Schwarzenegger's success in bodybuilding acting and politics have all come from combining his business mindset with an exceptional understanding of publicity and marketing. 50 years on from winning Mr. Universe in Cologne, Germany, he is a household name that digital marketers can learn a lot from! 


"I am a salesman by nature. And now most of my energies will go into selling California. If I can sell tickets to my movies like 'Red Sonja' or 'Last Action Hero,' you know I can sell just about anything. California is the easiest sell I've ever had." 
Schwarzenegger, 2004 State of the State address.



Holding Onto Core Customers

Marketing guru Seth Godin believes that building a successful business these days is all about finding and serving 
"The smallest market that can sustain you, the smallest market you can adequately serve"

Arnold has always understood the importance of this idea. This is why he uses social media very effectively to engage his core audience with content that they like. 80s action film obsessives may seem like a niche market but in a global market these followers add up. 

This is why Arnie has never tried to distance himself from his action movie persona. In fact, he uses it in Digital Marketing to appeal to this fanbase. He is only too happy to present his catchphrases in digital channels, Arnie understands the importance of soundbites and keywords, even from his less acclaimed films.


Building An Online Audience 

To build a core audience for your online business you also need to focus on building an online niche for your brand. For SEO this means finding the best keywords for your business's niche. Potential customers use very specific language to refer to the products and services you offer. Make sure you use these words in your website's content.  Use digital marketing tools like Google Analytics to help you understand more about your website's visitors. 


Lesson 1# for Digital Marketers

This is precisely what all digital marketers using social media should be trying to achieve. 

  • If you want to ensure the same for your business, never lose sight of your core customers, never forget or sacrifice them when expanding the appeal of your products.

  • Use digital marketing channels to keep them engaged and receptive to your new products

  • Use keyword tools to target the best value keyword niche for your business


He's Great at Social Media  Promotion  

With Digital Marketing, Schwarzenegger has taken this willingness to engage with fans to the next levelHis social media presence is one of the best around, constantly engaging with his core audience in fun ways. For example, when his Twitter account took the time to respond to a diehard fan's tribute Halloween costumes with a retweet and comment:                                                                                                                                             


Responding directly to these fans almost certainly made their day. It wasn't just a nice gesture, it was also great marketing, promoting the new terminator film, by creating thousands of responses and retweets in the newsfeed of his most important and loyal audience. Schwarzenegger is very good at creating engagement because he has a very clear understanding of his own appeal. His team always finds interesting and fun ways to create buzz. 


Lesson 2# for Digital Marketers

  • Effective modern marketing is often a two-way conversation between the marketer and the audience. 

  • If you are looking for some great inspiration for creating great content on your social media look no further. 

  • Small businesses can use Brand Monitoring to see what is being said about their brand online and to respond effectively to build rapport and customer loyalty.


He's a Cross-Channel Marketing Pro

Another crucial digital marketing concept, Arnold's online presence consistently gets right, is in the way he uses different marketing channels to mutually promote and reinforce one another. This is what modern multi-channel marketing is all about. Take this Tweet: 

Arnold's team maximizes the effectiveness of cross-channel marketing through well-selected collaborations. For example, during his appearance on The Graham Norton Show, the BBC's most popular talk show, Schwarzenegger gets his phone out and invites the other guest Cara Delevingne, Emilia Clarke, Tinie Tempah, and Jake Gyllenhaal on to help him make a viral video for social media. 



Boosting engagement with Collaboration

This is genius multi-channel marketing. Arnold's team knows that this clip will make the cut for the show as well as being uploaded to video platforms like Youtube, and of course, generate buzz on his and the other guests' social media channels. All of this extends his marketing reach way beyond his own fans. 

This collaboration allows him to reach new more diverse audiences who are seeing their heroes quoting his lines. The reason why the Graham Norton video works so well is because of Schwarzenegger's keen sense of fun and understanding of his own appeal, it allows the collaborating guests to have fun with his content and this creates something which is extremely shareable. 

Arnie's Social Media Stats 

Schwarzenegger has 21.7 million followers on Instagram, 4.9 million on Twitter, and 1.19 million Youtube subscribers. He also maintains a strong presence on Facebook and Pinterest. These fans in marketing terms are the most valuable customers. They are loyal repeat customers. Schwarzenegger uses social media to build and strengthen brand loyalty.


Lesson 3# for Digital Marketers

When you are looking to make the right choices for collaborations in content and link building

  • Make sure you also look for the best opportunities to create fun shareable collaborations.

  • The best collaborations will have the main goal of expanding your marketing reach beyond your current audience.

He's A Master of Going Viral 

Schwarzenegger has gone viral on many videos. In fact, a million views is quite modest compared to some of his others. A video where Arnie pretends to be a Gym instructor has 50 million views.


It is full of his trademark good sense of humor and openness to self-parody that his hardcore fans love. Schwarzenegger has also used viral videos to make clear statements on his standing on important moral issues. Cleverly using digital marketing techniques to maximize reach. His honest open condemnation of the extreme right in America gained a huge following, over 70 million people have already viewed it.



Few people use Digital Marketing more effectively to communicate to the maximum number of people, exactly what they stand for as a person and as a brand. A recent photo of Arnie on Twitter with Greta Thunberg combines all of the techniques for Digital marketing we have discussed, embracing new audiences, a collaborative multi-channel approach, and a keen sense of fun.


We hope you have learned a few tricks from Arnold and when the next blog article comes out you'll be back! 

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