Walt Disney Company is a $27 billion a year Global Entertainment giant which is an American based company was started by Walter Disney in venture with his brother named Roy O Disney in 1923. In 1928, Walt Disney created Mickey Mouse for which Walt wanted to call his character “Mortimer” but his wife convinced him to be called as “Mickey Mouse” and since then Mickey has been a classical hit for Walt Disney. In 1937 Disney presented their first feature full length Musical animated movie called “Snow white and the seven dwarfs” which is still a huge hit and remained in the hearts of its consumers forever.
Walt Disney recognizes what is customer value in Disney brand. They value a fun experience and homespun entertainment based on old-fashioned family values. Disney responds to these consumer preferences by leveraging the brand across different consumer markets. Let’s say that an American family goes to see a Disney movie together. They have a great time. They want to continue the experience. So Walt Disney offers Disney’s consumer products with multiple product lines aimed at specific age groups.
Walt Disney has been a giant in four consumer markets namely, Walt Disney studios and motion pictures, Disney Theme parks and resorts, Disney T.V channels and media networks and Disney consumer (merchandising) products.
In 2003, Walt Disney came up with a movie called “Pirates of the Caribbean” which was a block buster hit at the box office. The movie was targeted for all the members of a family. In addition to the movie, Disney created a theme park ride, merchandising program, video game, TV series and comic books. In 2004, Disney presented the movie called “Home on the range” which was again a hit. Apart from the movie Disney created an accompanying sound track album, a line of toys for kids, clothing featuring the heroine, a theme park ride and a series of books. So Disney more often or not supports and promotes its movies with a host of secondary products attached to it.
Disney’s strategy is to build consumer markets for each of its characters, from classics like Mickey Mouse to snow white to new hits like Kim Possible. Each brand is created for a special age group and distribution channel. Disney has a large distribution channel. Baby Mickey Mouse and Disney babies target infants. Mickey Mouse is sold through the department and specially gift stores while Baby Mickey Mouse is a lower price option sold through mass-market channels. Disney’s Mickey’s stuff for kids targets boys and girls while Mickey unlimited targets teens and adults.
When it comes to TV channels, Disney has its own channel called the Disney channel which is the top prime time destination for kids’ age b/w 6 to 14. Disney has a pre school program called the “play house” which is targeted to small kids’ age b/w 2 to 6. Disney offers a Co-branded visa cards to adults. Card holders earn one dollar for every $100 charged to the card and the card holders can charge the card up to $75000 annually and then they can redeem the earnings for Disney merchandise or services, including Disney’s theme parks and resorts, Disney stores, Disney studios and Disney stage products. Disney has also been in Home depot offering a line of licensed kids’ room paint colors with paint swatches in the signature mouse and ears shape.
Disney also has licensed food products with its characters on its brands. For example, Disney provides a Yogurt called Yo-Pals yogurt which feature Winnie the Pooh and its friends. The four ounce yogurts are targeted to preschoolers who have an illustrated short story under each lid of the yogurt that encourages reading and discovery. Disney also has some imprinted cookies in vanilla and other flavors have impressions of its famous characters like Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck etc.
Disney has come up with a recent TV program character called KIM POSSIBLE, which is an integration of all of its consumer product lines. Kim possible is a typical high school going girl who in her spare time saves the world from evil villains. It is the number one rated cable program in its time slot and has spawned a variety of merchandise offered by the seven Disney consumer product divisions. The merchandise includes:
- Disney Hard lines- stationery, lunchboxes, food products, room decor.
- Disney Soft lines- sportswear, sleepwear, daywear, accessories.
- Disney toys- action figures, wigglers, beanbags, plush, fashion dolls, poseables.
- Disney Publishing- Diaries, junior novels, comic books.
- Walt Disney records- Kim possible soundtrack.
- Buena Vista Home Entertainment- DVD/video.
- Buena Vista Games- Game Boy advance.
The success of Kim Possible is driven by action packed storylines which translate well into merchandise products in many categories. Today, the pervasiveness of Disney product offerings is staggering and all in all, there are over 3 billion entertainment-based impressions of Mickey Mouse received by children every year.