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The Magic of Marketing

Sharing the secrets behind the 'happiest place on earth.'

Disneyland™ and Disneyworld™ are famed family destinations which evoke only the happiest of thoughts. Whatever your weekly planner may include, infusing a little bit of marketing magic from the makers of magic, might help. We’ve visited Disneyland™, California for an up close and personal affirmation regarding the famous (and secretive) perks of the park. You’ll often find chief execs walking the walk down Main Street USA or Fantasyland in an attempt to glean some marketing wisdom. After all, Disney parks rake in a whopping $36 million per day on average. Branding should be about the entire experience. At Disney: As Business Insider notes, “under the Candy Palace and Candy Kitchen window on Main Street, there’s a small vent. This vent shoots the fantastic candy smells into the streets. It’s called the Smellitzer, purposely pumping glorious aromas into the park”. Practical takeaway: It should always be about the entire experience, as perceived by the client. Think of how and when your product is used. What age range or gender is most popularly associated with your product or service. Which conveniences or differences can make a better overall experience every time? For food products, emphasize the human side. For seasonal products, make them experience the season for a feel good purchase, rather than a boring one. Think like your customer. At Disney: Garbage bins are placed within 15 footsteps of each other. This was a reasoning which Walt Disney himself test trialed. He noticed that farther than that would mean that it’d easier to dump the trash, than it would be to bin them. Rather than preach park rules, he implemented a bylaw of customer convenience, down to the last step. It’s no wonder the park is squeaky clean, by a long shot. Practical takeaway: It’s simpler to inundate your clients, employees or vendors with caveats and rules. While company protocol is important, the focus should be on an enjoyable workplace and customer experience. Take human nature into consideration when setting up your office or consumer product. Layout, presentation and precision are important. If your current packaging of bite sized nuggets are more space, less nugget, then rethink your portion size so that customers actually get to taste the selection. Encourage customer feedback to improve your product or service. Associate with like minded brands. At Disney: At Disneyland, only Coca Cola soda products are sold. This must’ve been a hard code to crack, but researchers value the benefit of like minded brand affiliation. Practical takeaway: Associate yourselves with same caliber brands when expanding or promoting product lines. If you are a locally sourced independent designer, steer away from department store comparisons. Your client base is the one seeking exclusive and organic, as opposed to run of the mill and mass produced. Color is key for customer recognition. At Disney: Walt Disney truly wanted it to feel like every visitor was walking on a red carpet upon entry. It is for that reason that the ground when you first enter the park is comprised of red brick. You may not have ever mentioned this detail, yet the entire experience is a culmination of millions of similar details, all of which lend air to the ‘happiest place on earth”. Practical takeaway:Even if a detail seems trivial, if it involves your passion for your company, it may be huge to your customer’s overall experience. Trust your gut when presenting your brand vision at its best. After all, first impressions are only given once. Recognize employee identity. At Disney: Each Disneyland™ cast member’s name tag features his/ her first name and hometown. It’s a way in which an individual’s identity is valued and celebrated, even if he/ she is sporting a Toy Story costume which shields every semblance of human identity. Practical takeaway: Value your employees and their background. Express interest, concern and sympathy when they are faced with a difficult situation. Applaud progress and, even, attempts. They are human and your human side is an important aspect as a boss. Make your bang louder than everyone else. At Disney: Nothing beats the sounds of Main Street, USA, when the parks open. That’s because the horses have special hooves to make the clip clopping sound louder. Everything is done on a grandiose scale at Disney and extreme measures are taken to make it all happen. Practical takeaway: Enhance your corporate image so that it’s better than your competitors. Stand out and take the time to figure out just how to make a lasting impression. Repeat purchases stem from memorable experiences. There’s more to Disney parks which may have gone unnoticed at your last visit. Such as ‘no 2 characters are allowed to be present in the same area at the same time-frame’. Infringing on this rule can cost you your job, since the corporate office at Disney takes visitor imagination quite seriously. Employees and visitors are never called that. Instead they are referred to as ‘cast members’ and ‘guests’. The connotative tone truly makes a difference, making each park entry feel like an RSVP invitation. Disney parks will also never sell gum at any street vendors or specialty shoppes. Not even at the candy shoppe. This is another perk to keeping the park in shape. Quite frankly, the one item that even a 15 step garbage distance won't fix, is chewing gum. So, the next time you take your tots to see Mickey, you just never know what you will learn from the experience. Spread the magic, Sarah

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