Noir. Mercenary Group :: The Best Marketing In Eve?

Many of you are no doubt familiar with Noir.  I’m not referring to the Alexander Noir, the man whose Nyx was crashed into a station during the Empyrean Age, but rather  Noir. Mercenary Group (henceforth NMG on this blog).

I do not have a great deal of direct experience in combat with or against NMG. There were a few scraps here and there, but I was never involved directly against them as a result of their contracts, which is when I assume they get serious.

While I really can’t vouch for their skill as mercs, there is one area where this organization continues to impress me. That would be their marketing.

I remember when Mr. Karrde announced the creation of Noir. The message was simple: (to paraphrase) “we did most the work in our previous (well-known) merc outfit and we’re the best you can hire.” Add in some sexy banners (anime-related for added points with certain demographics) and you have a very strong brand.

Over time, they have taken things much further. They publicize the results of their many contracts, along with testimonials. They also established a sexy web portal for the alliance complete with a blog, forums and public announcements. They even have “employee of the month” and numerous methods of keeping their members excited about what can sometimes be boring work (as in the case of long station camps).

However, other alliances have done all of the above in the past. What NMG does well is create original, enjoyable content. The popular “true heroes of eve” parodies were just one well-known example of how NMG promotes itself. There are even podcasts by NMG available for download.

Just like a successful corporation in the real world, NMG has used marketing to position themselves as the #1 mercenary group. When people think soda, they typically think of a name brand like Coke or Pepsi (or maybe Quafe). When people think of mercenary services in Eve, they think of NMG.

Here is the latest release (based on Ke$ha’s “Tik Tok”).  Karrde and Jimer Lins did an amazing job with this one.

NMG has also undergone a recent change from being solely empire-based into owning a small portion of “New Providence” and they have even established an academy corp.

Some say that, after taking space of their own, NMG will drift away from being mercenaries and become another run-of-the-mill alliance.

I don’t see that happening. Even before taking space, there were a few people Karrde admits he never would have contracted against, it just wasn’t publicly declared. As long as they have abundant targets, there will not be any problem for their business model.

Moreover, I reject the notion that mercs must accept any and all contracts. For example, there might be an outfit that role-plays as ex-slaves who now make their isk taking jobs solely against the Amarr Empire.

Even without the crutch of role-play, I’m very sympathetic to the “Seleene” position that no one has to play “your version of mercenaries.” If they want to build a merc-run empire, I say more power to them.

The restrictions NMG has set forth on contracts leave plenty of room for taking jobs (even against AAA as long as it doesn’t involve attacking infrastructure). I would say that they have 99.9% of the options open to them as they had before.

In exchange for maintaining a few relationships diplomatically, they’ve gained a place to make isk and engage in small gang PvP between contracts. I’d say it’s a worthwhile trade.

With the popularity and renown of NMG, anyone who thinks they will be short on business as a result of their move into Providence is – in my humble opinion – far off base.

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2 Responses to “Noir. Mercenary Group :: The Best Marketing In Eve?”

  1. Titus Loken Says:

    An enjoyable and informative read easley (yet again), and here’s another long winded comment for you 😛

    The only dealings i have had with NMG was back when i was a CEO, we where war-dec’d and i contacted them on for a quote. When i told the enemy CEO that i was in talks with NMG they dropped the dec moments later. Their reputation combined with their marketing is so good, they me be shit at what they do and people will still offer them contracts (maybe not the high end stuff… but none the less).

    I liked their website so much i recomended my fathers company look into it as inspiration for their website revamp, and even their proffesional team of web designers liked it.

    • I though that “Clik Lok” was amazing. Here’s the official forum thread.

      The lyrics:

      Wake up in the evening feeling like Seleene (Sup bro?)
      Put on my tank, I’m out the dock – I’m gonna hit up Provi (Let’s go)
      Before I leave, insure my ship with no less than Plat
      Cause when I leave for the op, I ain’t coming back (maybe)
      I’m talking – HAMs on all my Drakes, Drakes
      Best turn off camera shake, shake
      Smarties blowing up some drones, drones
      Hot dropping, lolin bout NC/SC
      Can I get an invite to fleet please
      Wanna warp in a twentyyyy

      Don’t stop, watch it pop
      Jimer, keep that bubble up
      All night, we’re gon’ fight
      ‘Til we see the sunlight
      Click lock, on a BOPS
      And the damage won’t stop no
      Woah-oh oh oh
      Woah-oh oh oh

      Don’t stop, watch it pop
      Jimer, keep that bubble up
      All night, we’re gon’ fight
      ‘Til we see the sunlight
      Click lock, on a BOPS
      And the damage won’t stop no
      Woah-oh oh oh
      Woah-oh oh oh

      Got all the Coke in the world, and gangs got plenty of beer
      Tons of money in my pocket, and pay day is here
      Now, the recruits are lining up cause they hear we got swagger
      But we kick ‘em to the curb unless they *music breaks* possess English literacy, better than 4:1 kill/death ratio, really high efficiency, pass an interview, have strong references, will be reasonably active and don’t lose expensive ships in their first couple weeks in corp *music resume*
      I’m talking ‘bout – everybody giving out spanks, spanks
      Cruisers try to break my tank, tank
      Gonna smack him and tell him thanks, thanks
      Now, now – we camp til they kick us out, out
      Or the server shut us down, down
      Server shut us down, down
      CCP shut us –

      Don’t stop, watch it pop
      Jimer, keep that bubble up
      All night, we’re gon’ fight
      ‘Til we see the sunlight
      Click lock, on a BOPS
      And the damage won’t stop no
      Woah-oh oh oh
      Woah-oh oh oh

      Don’t stop, watch it pop
      Jimer, keep that bubble up
      All night, we’re gon’ fight
      ‘Til we see the sunlight
      Click lock, on a BOPS
      And the damage won’t stop no
      Woah-oh oh oh
      Woah-oh oh oh

      You buy some ships
      You get beat down
      My HAMS, they spam
      Yeah, I got you
      With my gang up
      We got you now
      We got that loot
      Yea, we got you
      Noob, you buy some ships
      You get beat down
      My HAMS, they spam
      Yeah, I got you
      With my gang up
      Get your gang up
      Come get f*bleep*d up

      No, the gang won’t start until I log in

      Don’t stop, watch it pop
      Jimer, keep that bubble up
      All night, we’re gon’ fight
      ‘Til we see the sunlight
      Click lock, on a BOPS
      And the damage won’t stop no
      Woah-oh oh oh
      Woah-oh oh oh

      Don’t stop, watch it pop
      Jimer, keep that bubble up
      All night, we’re gon’ fight
      ‘Til we see the sunlight
      Click lock, on a BOPS
      And the damage won’t stop no
      Woah-oh oh oh
      Woah-oh oh oh

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