AMPERAGE Marketing & Fundraising

One-Minute MarketerHow Does Disney Do So Many Things Right?

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How Does Disney Do So Many Things Right?

On recent visit to Disney World® for a trade conference, I was so surprised at the attention to detail. If we all could find our Disney soul, the market would open up to us in so many ways.

Here are three little things that made me realize I was at Disney and not just another corporate event:

  • Sound baffles—When was the last time you attended a conference and the door kept opening and closing to the point of distraction? Enter a little wedge that stopped the noise and the distractions. I’m sure that was an inexpensive fix.
  • Plug ins—Is it really that hard to realize we want our phones, iPads and computers close to our bed and plugged in? Thank you, Disney, for understanding guests’ needs in advance, and being up-to-date at a resort area themed on the past.
  • Expectations met—They said I would receive a letter with my ticket to the Magical Express in my hotel room 24 hours prior to my departure. The letter came in a nice envelope and was on time. Along with the bus for the ride to the airport.

Yes, the flowers were in bloom around the manicured facility. Flesh paint was going on the buildings. The food was fantastic. The uniforms were fantastic. Yet it is the little things that made all the difference.

The biggest little thing is the way cast members (from the maintenance crew to the airplane kiosk outside the hotel) treat guests—it was always with a smile and a friendly effort to make the day magical. And that is free. It just requires training and constantly reminding cast members of the importance of experience.

In the end, Disney knows the experience starts at the airport and ends at the airport. Everything in between is managed to make sure you’re enjoying your overall experience. And sold at the same time.  That’s the magical part.

Written by:

Mark wrote his first direct-mail fundraising letter in 1981 for the University of Iowa Center for Advancement. The effort raised a few million dollars in undiscovered wills and legacy gifts. From that day forward Mark discovered a love of the big idea that moves the needle. After 12 years at KWWL, Mark became a business owner as a co-founder of ME&V — rebranded as AMPERAGE in 2015. After 25 years of leading creative teams in video production, graphic design, PR, writing and web development, Mark transitioned out of ownership in 2021. Today he serves in an employee role as special projects consultant. He is creatively ambidextrous — son of an artist and engineer — and famous for distilling complex ideas down to a few words and a few visuals. Mark is a writer. When he found that many nonprofits struggled with complex branding puzzles, he wrote the book, “NonProfit-NonMarketing .” He also wrote a novel called “Reenactment.” Mark is an active blogger OneMinuteMarketer® with nearly 1,000 readers each week on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter. One of his most popular YouTube videos is on “How to Look Good on Zoom.” One of Mark’s fondest business memories was being named to INC 500 two times and attending the INC 500 conference with other winners. Mark is considered by some a Civil War expert (and that explains his novel). Mark also served as an adjunct professor in the business and in the communications departments at Wartburg College. Mark is a graduate of the University of Iowa and is currently vice president of the University of Iowa Journalism and Mass Communications Advisory Board. Mark is married to state Sen. Liz Mathis, and the two love to travel, even when it means being trapped by a volcano in the Czech Republic for three weeks.