Disney: The Magic of Building a Community

Disney: The Magic of Building a Community

Disney: The Magic of Building a Community

The name, the logo, the images, the characters ? no matter who you are, you?d know them if you saw them. And although they endure plenty of criticism for their extreme commerciality, the Disney brand is undoubtedly one of the most recognizable symbols in modern pop culture. Say what you will about their approach, but when people will spend a year?s worth of savings to ride in circles on a metal elephant in your park, you?re a winner in my book.

So how do they do it? How does one of the most deeply rooted worldwide franchises keep pace with a population of people whose technology changes literally every day? The answer: social media.

Facebook Likes Across Disney Brand:
Disney –
- 9,618,077
Disney World
– 7,139,438
Mickey Mouse
– 1,619,435
Toy Story
– 23,782,412

?and that?s just 5 of them.

Among all the Facebook pages managed by the company, they are estimated to acquire 5 million new fans per week. The pages frequently feature questions, contests and other ways to engage their loyal fan base. How can someone resist the temptation to respond when asked:

The point is, they?re consistent, they listen, and they react. When they ask you what it felt like the first time you saw the Cinderella Castle, it doesn?t feel like you?re submitting your answer to a computer. Somehow it seems like they heard us, whether they respond or not, because we keep coming back for more. Perhaps it?s magic? Or maybe it?s just great marketing.

?What social media allows you to do is different from traditional consumer-facing advertising. Social media lets you uniquely connect with fans? [Social media] is adjunct to everything we do for deepening the emotional ties and the franchise? – Andy Mooney, Chairman of Disney Consumer Products

Recent Major Social Media Moves:

Disney Publishing
? Expands to Android market, holds 7 out of top 10 apps in the Paid Books category
? Has sold more than 1 million eBooks in 2011 so far, more than double the total sold in 2010
? Tapping into digital comics with the new ownership of Marvel

Disney Baby
? In less than 8 months has landed a place in the top 5 baby brands on Facebook
? Parents and moms asked to submit photos of their babies in Disney onesies which in turn creates a discussion among users (where?d you get it, how much was it, etc.)

Alfred Angelo Fairy Tale Weddings
? YouTube video boasts more than 1.7 million views
? The single most successful YouTube video from Disney Living

Some may say the brand succeeds in the social world because it had an existing following, which is a fair argument. However, the thing to note is that in the face of a striking shift in the way we live our lives, Disney has managed to retain its place in the consumers? mind. When the theaters (yes, movie theaters) were showing The Lion King and Beauty & the Beast, America?s youth was vastly different than they are today. But Disney took the classic approach of ?going where the people go? and has, yet again, come out on top. And that?s the most magical thing of all.

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