Consumer Foresights: the Secret with which Disney Triumphs

Reaching consumers is increasingly complicated. Understanding them means taking into account more and more elements and also the potential clients themselves have become more demanding than ever.

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“Reaching consumers is increasingly complicated. Understanding them means taking into account more and more elements and also the potential clients themselves have become more demanding than ever.”

How to know what is to be done and how to connect with the audience? The key could be in the consumers themselves, or that is at least what more and more companies believe and so more and more companies are betting. That is also the secret of The Walt Disney Company, the giant that is not only the owner of Disney.

The multinational takes advantage of what it knows about consumers and what consumers tell them to establish what they should do and where they should pull to position themselves in a winning manner for the future. The company resorts to what they call “consumer visions” (consumer foresights in English) to determine what their strategy should be.

“In the last two years, we have created a Consumer Foresight research department,” explains Jill Estorino, global vice president of marketing and sales for the giant parks and resorts division. The team focuses on the trends that are seen within consumers and in identifying business opportunities from them. They are “really anticipating where we should move as a brand,” says the directive.

Consumers, data source

Thus, Disney studies consumers to see where things will go and therefore what they have to do to continue to connect with them. This allows them to get ahead of things, instead of waiting for things to happen and it also changes the dynamics of their relationships with their consumers. As the directive explains, these are active and non-passive consumers of the products and services and are “active explorers” of the brand.

The company is very attentive to what its consumers say and do. For example, part of the secret to the success of its amusement parks is that the giant listens carefully to what its users comment on their experiences, reading their comments on social networks and even asking them directly.

It also uses the latest technologies to follow the reactions of consumers. One of his last experiments was to try to read the faces of the viewers of his films, in order to determine what they were doing well and what they were doing wrong.

It also uses artificial intelligence to create experiences or big data to analyze patterns of consumption. For example, at Marvel, they use big data as support to determine what stories they should tell next.

Do not stay in the comfort zone

Disney, therefore, does not stay comfortably simply taking advantage of its success, but uses the information it has of its consumers to try to mark where it should go in the future. This is in fact a theory about how companies should be and how they should act.

Instead of focusing on protecting the brand and what has been achieved and using that as a lever to reach consumers, companies – the theory points – have to focus on looking for predictions about where things are going and how their assets and positions fit in. it. That’s what Disney would have been doing in recent times.

Without forgetting the essence

And, of course, with all these things we must never forget what consumers want and what, from the outset, makes the company special. As the vice president of marketing recalls, in the end what Disney fans want is “great storytelling” and “stories told with the heart”.

You have to be able to maintain the essence of the brand and improve it with the new tools.


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