Friday, February 22, 2013

Star Command: Social Media Style

Social media is continually growing as a key element of successful marketing and advertising. Because of this, businesses and professionals who do use social media need a strategy to keep up with all of their profiles, posts, mentions, comments, etc. Without a strategy for your social media management, you won't get far. One way companies are managing their online presence is through social media command centers. Yes, social media command centers. Sounds pretty cool, right? If you're like me, when you heard the words command center, you probably thought of the Space Mountain Command Center (seen below) from Magic Kingdom Park. Anyways...

Companies today are continually building and using social media command centers to help monitor all of their sites at once. Social media monitoring is important for the following reasons:
  • Allows you to discover conversations happening in real time. This way, you can reply to comments or questions immediately, creating a strong connection with your audience.
  • Allows you to understand your audience better.
  • Helps you determine what content works best and doesn't work at all with your audience.
  • Helps you discover which content your audience is most engaged with.
  • Makes a connection with strategies and objectives of a social media campaign.
These social media command centers are a great investment for businesses wanting to have a better way to control all of their social media sites. All a social media command center really requires is a few TV screens, computers, and the wires needed to hook them together. The American Red Cross, Dell, and even the 2012 Presidential campaigns use social media command centers to manage their social media sites and receive the benefits of having them.

So, if your business isn't quite keeping up with all of its social media, think about building a social media command center. You'll only benefit from it if you do! And, you'll be able to pretend like you're Buzz Lightyear when you talk to your coworkers by saying things like "We have a new comment, Space Ranger!" or "This is *insert your name* of Social Media Star Command, do you read me?" Or at least I would. :)

Thanks for reading and have a magical day!

An 8-Bit Day in London Town

Earlier this year, Disney transformed London's Brick Lane into "8 Bit Lane," inspired by Disney's latest animated classic, "Wreck-It-Ralph." 8 Bit Lane, the world's first pixelated street, ran from January 11-13 last month at Truman Brewery on London's Brick Lane. Disney had artists build 8-bit sculptures and then scattered those sculptures all around for people to see and talk about.

This guerrilla marketing technique by Disney didn't allow for much interaction between people and the exhibit, but it definitely got people to talk. Disney hung a large banner (seen above) with a picture of Wreck-It-Ralph himself, along with the #8BITLANE hashtag to encourage people to talk about the 8-bit street on social media sites such as Twitter.  Disney definitely created a buzz about the movie in the U.K. where the release date was February 8, a month after the street campaign launched. 

I think this street campaign was a great idea for Disney. The sculptures ranged from things like a dog, birds, and even clouds, creating a truly 8-bit street for people to walk through. Take a look at the video below to see the street exhibit for yourself! 

Friday, February 15, 2013

Get It Before It's Gone!: "Limited Time Magic"

Disney's limited time ice castle in Time's Square

On October 17, 2012, Disney announced “Limited Time Magic” for Disney Parks by creating a giant ice castle, much like Cinderella’s, and placing it in front of The Disney Store in Time’s Square. This ice castle, made of 45,000 pounds of ice, kick started Disney’s “Limited Time Magic” by showing magic, but only for a limited time (ice melts, ya know?).  

So what is this “Limited Time Magic” thing all about? Well, each week, Disney will surprise guests at Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort in unexpected ways. 52 weeks in the year, with 52 limited time surprises! For example, from Jan. 21-27, Disney delighted guests with “Long Lost Friends Week” at Walt Disney World. During this week, guests had the opportunity to meet and greet with characters from the olden Disney days, such as Clarabelle Cow, Horace Horsecollar, The Three Little Pigs, Robin Hood, and even Friar Tuck! Amazing! I would have LOVED to meet Clarabelle Cow. How about you?!

This week, Disney is celebrating “True Love Week,” with special romantic dinners for two, a blushing pink and red Cinderella Castle, and even meet and greets with all your favorite Disney princesses…joined by their princes! Swoon!

Here are some of the “Limited Time Magic” events that Disney has announced but haven’t happened yet:    
·         President’s Day-A Weeklong Celebration
·         Independence Week
·         Pirate Week
·         Dapper Dans Sing Boy Bands (...I'm especially looking forward to this!)
·         Unleash the Villains

So if you’re traveling to Disney World or Disneyland this year, be sure to click this link to check back with Disney's Limited Time Magic  page for updates on new and exciting events happening! I’ll be going to The Magic Kingdom in Walt Disney World in March, so I can’t wait to find out what event will be going on during my visit! Whatever Disney may do, I’m positive it will make my trip much more magical! 

Thanks for reading and have a magical day!

Infographics: Think Visually!

If you love Pinterest as much as I do, you’veprobably encountered a few infographics during those long (wasted) hours spentpinning to your heart’s content. Infographics are emerging as a more popularway for businesses and individuals to present information in a visual andinteresting way. Mark Smiciklas, author of “The Power of Infographics,” definesan infographic as “a visualization ofdata or ideas that tries to convey complex information to an audience in amanner that can be quickly consumed and easily understood.”  
 Infographics should combine both art and science, and can bethought of as ‘idea art.’ They need to create a mixture of visuals and data toshare information that is relevant, interesting, and unique to the brand,topic, or industry the infographic should be representing.  If done successfully, infographics can help toextend your personal brand or company presence. Another awesome benefit frominfographics is that they’re easily shareable on social media platforms.  
There are several characteristics of infographics thatrepresent different kinds of data. These characteristics are as follows:
  •  Statistics       
  • Cartoons
  •  Concepts
  •  Models
  •  Information
  • Timeline
The infographic (to the left) called  6 Reasons to Visualize Your Data is a great example of avisual and captivating representation of data. Also, it shares wonderful reasons why you shouldshare information visually! 

Another fabulous example of an infographic done right isthis one (to the right), done by the Disney Parks Blog. This infographic is atimeline called 40 Years at Walt Disney World Resort, so check it out to see some of the amazing milestones Disney World has experienced since its opening in 1971!  
Thanks for reading and have a magical day! 

Friday, February 1, 2013

Bibbidi Bobbidi Blog!

Let's talk about blogging. Today, blogging is becoming more and more mainstream. Employers expect possible future employees to know how to blog, how to write on a blog, and how to represent themselves or their company on the blog while being creative and innovative. So, blogging is an important skill for young professionals to have.

Here are a couple reasons why you should blog:
  • Blogging humanizes your brand. Make sure your audience knows you aren't a soulless robot. Connect with them through comments to build relationships.
  • Blogging separates yourself from the rest of your competitors! Be creative and unique so you stand out.
  • Blogging on a regular basis helps tremendously with your writing skills. Practice makes perfect!
  • Blogging helps promote your personal or professional brand. It also creates interest and drives traffic to your personal or professional brand! Woohoo! 
Now that you know why blogging is so important, I'll give you an example of one of my favorite professional blogs...The Disney Parks Blog! I think Disney does a great job with this blog. Each post is something exciting and engaging, which is what any blog should aim to be. The Disney Parks Blog shares relevant information about Disney Parks news, and keeps readers interested by using great photos and creating engagement among readers. 
Here's the link to the Disney Parks Blog so you can enjoy some exciting Disney Parks news!  

Have a magical day, everyone!

Monsters University and Rainy City Tales

If you haven't heard already, Pixar Animation Studios is releasing their fourteenth feature film this summer..."Monster's University". As a prequel to the 'monstrously hilarious' "Monster's Inc.", I'm expecting to laugh enough times while watching "Monster's University" to fill at least fifty laugh canisters. (If you're unsure of what a laugh canister is, stop reading this right now and go watch "Monster's Inc." because your life is incomplete. Then come back and finish reading of course!)

Anywho...Pixar is famous for not only their feature films, but also their much-loved and adored short films. Some of my favorite Pixar shorts are "Geri's Game" (where the old man plays chess with funny!) and the quirky "For the Birds" (the one with the judgmental birds who face the unfortunate, but funny consequences of bullying a larger silly bird).

Pixar has been working on a new short film to place in front of "Monster's University" in theaters this summer. The creative people at Pixar created a viral marketing campaign to create hype for the upcoming short by creating an code-named tumblr page documenting the work being done on the film, giving away subtle pictures and hints to what the film will be about, without revealing that they were even Pixar. How dare those Pixarians be so sneaky! Even with the stealthiness, Pixar fanatics who had been keeping a close eye on this blog saw the picture below on the tumblr and made their assumptions about the man behind the curtain, if you will. Pixar followers found that the "MU" in the picture below stands for "Monster's University", giving away the identity of the masterminds behind the Rainy City Tales tumblr!

Here's the link to the Rainy City Tales tumblr page:

Here's a close up of "MU"

Earlier this month, Pixar shared their first sneak peak at the film and gave its official title: "The Blue Umbrella." The short is going to center around a blue umbrella who fancies a red umbrella. In his attempts to get close to this red umbrella, the blue umbrella gets a little beaten up by the weather. I think that sounds adorable enough, so when Pixar released their first clip of the film, I fell in love with the cutest little umbrella you'll ever see. The animation looks great and very realistic which is a bit of a change for Pixar shorts. Will the blue and red umbrella fall in love and have a happy ever after? I can't wait to find out. Can you? : )

Watch the sneek peak clip here:

Have a magical day!