One of the first breakout sessions after lunch on Monday featured Duncan Wardle, VP Global & WDW Public Relations. Duncan talked about how media is changing and how Disney finds authentic stories at their theme parks and showcases them in the traditional/non-traditional media.
Duncan started off his presentation by showing the EPIC video from Poynter (remember 2005). I had not watched EPIC in a number of years, so it was fun to revisit the predictions and see how many are arriving ahead of time.
Duncan asked the audience, who reads the newspaper, who watches the ‘nightly news’, who reads RSS. Interesting to see the shift. More and more RSS readers, and less
The connected consumer. There are four major driving forces: Digitization, Convergence, Media Snacking and Social Networking.
Digitization: Sales of devices are growing at a huge rate.
Convergence: A cell phone can do just about everything :-)
Media Snacking: Data/Music/Video will all be delivered via one device, probably via broadband. People get bored. People are looking for ways to optimize their media snacking habits.
Social Networking: Growing fast, but many of the social networks are generic. He’s looking for the era of specialization.
When it comes to news, consumers will always get there first, but will they be the first to report? More and more they are.
Key quote from Duncan: “Brands that I choose not to pay attention to, can’t reach me.”
People are looking for authentic stories and that’s the key point for PR professionals, they are the consummate story-tellers. It’s your job to find these stories and help them get out. The stories are within your brands, find them. They are the ones that will connect with stories.
More and more there is a two-way dialog and we need to be part of the dialog.
Disney launched a campaign with CareerBuilder.com to find people to live our their Disney Dream Job. Consumers could submit videos showcasing themselves, and why they should win the ‘dream job’.
Disney is very fortunate, there are scores of people that are very passionate about their brand. However, how do you handle idea submissions? Many corporations receive ideas, concepts and stories, but what if they’re sued for using those ideas?
By reaching out to their consumers they learned a great deal. They also found people that really want to work at Disney.
In virtual worlds, tweens are creating the products they’re interested in. By just listening, they learn what their audience is interested in.
Online advocates for your brands, will help you reach those audiences that have shut you off.