Disney is a juggernaut. They own Marvel, Lucasfilm, ABC, ESPN, and your house. I’m serious, check into it. They might own your house. But that doesn’t stop them from putting personal touches on their conferences. Every night when we came back to the room, there was something special. Chocolate strawberries, cookies, a note, cufflinks, a gift bag, cheesecake bites, etc. Did I mention that we ate well? Check out last’s week post here.
One highlight of the D23 conference was the costumes. I estimate about 10% of people were wearing a costume to this deal. Now I believe in the dignity of every human being, and that everyone is a prince and princess. In one respect. But that does not mean that everyone should be dressing up like a Disney character. Check out some of the top costumes here and here. Some things are not meant to be seen. And once you see them, they cannot be unseen.
3 more things I learned hanging around Disney:
- You must build momentum and excitement in order to sell. Disney is a master of cultivating excitement. The President of Marvel brought out the guy who plays the Falcon who is very funny and charismatic. This was a great surprise and they made it seem like he was the celebrity guest. But then they introduced Captain America. The crowd went bonkers. They followed this pattern several times where the director or producer would tease something, deliver, but then have a surprise at the end that took things over the top. They saved the best for last. The last announcement of a session was that they are opening 2 14-acre Star Wars attractions. The crowd went bezerk. So did I. We will be able to drive the Millenium Falcon. Are you kidding me?
- Wonder is closely related to surprise. Surprise is a key factor of wonder. We rarely had one without the other. Everyone loves surprises, especially when they shatter your expectations out of the water. Disney seems to be masterful at the “wow” experience.
- Story is king and emotion is queen. If a story wasn’t emotional (good or bad) then it wasn’t worth much. In America right now, story is king. If it’s not true for you, then it’s not true. Experience is the judge and jury of all truth. Disney said “We want to tell stories, stories that deserve to be told.” Every film is emotional. And everyone can relate to it. “A tear for every laugh, and a laugh for every tear.”