Theme park magic, for a limited time only
Take a look at the theme park construction schedule
, and you'll see a big gap for the Disney theme parks in the United States. Disney has no new attractions scheduled for debut in 2013. There's nothing new under construction at the Disneyland Resort in California, and the only new rides at Walt Disney World will either be open later this year, or not until 2014 and beyond.
So when you've got nothing new to promote for a whole year, what do you hype? Bring on the gimmicks!
Disney kicked off its new promotion with a photo op of massive ice sculptures in New York's Times Square.
As gimmicks go, Disney's plan for 2013 looks like a fun one. Disney will introduce "theme weeks" at its parks on both coasts, including "True Love Week" for Valentine's Day, "Pirate Week," "Independence Week" for the Fourth of July, and "Long Lost Friends Week," featuring lesser-known Disney characters not often seen in the parks. Disney also will bring the Golden Horseshoe Revue back to Disneyland for a one-month run. (Yes!) There'll be a late-night Friday the 13th party in September, featuring the Disney villains, too.
The idea is to present a slew of short-run, limited-time special entertainment promotions in the parks. Which is great, as it provides something special and unique throughout the year, giving locals reasons to visit more often and creating some "off peak" attractions for out-of-market visitors, too.
The only thing I don't like about the promotion? The name: "Limited Time Magic".
Ugh. What is this, a mattress sale? ("Come on down, these prices are only for a limited time!") Who wants to think about limitations when on vacation? Shouldn't Disney be promoting the limitless magic of its theme parks, instead of diminishing its most precious marketing hook ("magic")? I get that Disney wants people to feel an immediate urge to book a visit, but surely it doesn't want to plant the idea that Disney's running out of magic soon?
(If I'm Universal Orlando, I'm responding to this campaign with a promotion for the front-of-line passes at the Universal hotels. Show a big picture of Harry Potter with the catchphrase "More Time for Magic!" But I'm way too competitive sometimes.)
Maybe people will ignore the lamentable "Limited Time Magic" phrase and just focus on the individual offerings. But, coupled what I wrote earlier today about Fastpass+ and NextGen queues, I'm beginning to wonder if Disney's not losing a bit of its edge when crafting marketing messages. What do you think?
I love the idea, but the name sucks. Maybe call it Weekly Magic? I'm really looking foward to Unleash the Villains as nobody will be in DHS at 11 PM ish >:) But most importantly, Long Lost Friends week sounds great! I'm hoping Darkwing Duck and Roger Rabbit can make an appearance!
The Golden Horseshoe Revue is the ultimate gimmick. This show can seat very few people. You have to camp out all morning to see it in the afternoon towards evening. When it was running, it already had a long line. They should bring it back for the full 2013 calendar year. All these promotions should run for a few months each like at least a quarter. In this way, you'll see what interests you and you won't miss out.
I'm interested in seeing what characters show up for Long Lost Friends week, haha!!
Long Lost Friends Week Guest Line-Up:
Hey Mike, how you doin'? Don't you know NBC Universal would sue Disney over that?
I'd like to know where one can find the events' descriptions and dates and locations in a simple web site page, publicized and detailed months in advance so that the general public can plan well ahead of time potential visits. Or is that a Magical Fantasy Dream of mine?
Tony, Disney will reveal more weeks in the coming weeks.
With a strongly rumored Universal announcement for the 2013 season here coming around Nov. 1st, I'm pretty sure Universal will be leading the theme park industry (atleast here in Orlando) for quite some time. Disney is really unimpressive. *yawn
Awful name. Probably going to me another awful campaign too with tacky decorations cluttering the parks.
I'm really growing tired of Disney focusing more on dumb marketing approaches than actual attractions. Universal has it right and is beating Disney with new, innovative attractions. Instead of trying to match them or at least re-habbing a lot of their beat-up older rides, Disney is putting together gimmicks that don't excite me.
I guess what bums me out is that Disney Parks should be that special all the time. People might want to stay longer because they will want to see all the cool stuff, rides, events, etc, and maybe not go to other parks. I feel a little cheated because I am not rich and can't just go down and see these special weeks, or want to fight the increased crowds.
No big construction plans?
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