Nov 14, 2023
Hi everyone. Welcome to this week’s episode of Pixie Dust & Profits. I’m Nicole.
And I’m Yasmine.
And today we’re going to be talking about promotion from within. And we don’t mean job title promotion, we mean marketing. And this is all about how you can use the inside of your business to promote other pieces of your business. And I think that this often gets branded as content repurposing, but that’s not what we’re talking about. We’re not talking about rewriting something you’ve already done or distributing a blog post as an email and a social media post. We’re talking about actually hard promoting your other products, tools and resources within other products, tools and resources. So let’s give you the inspiration behind this episode and then we’ll talk about all these business lessons we have for you.
So it all stemmed from seeing that Jamie Lee Curtis, Owen Wilson and Keith Stanfield were at the Haunted Mansion ride at Disneyland to promote the upcoming film, which I mean it’s, it’s out now. Haunted Mansion, I’m just gonna say is like one of my favorite, like classic Disney rides. And part of the reason is because there’s so much like fun lore behind it. Like aside from like going into the doom buggies and everything, there’s like so much interesting history, which a lot of which stemmed from the original ride at Disneyland and like we’ve been on Nicole.
Yeah. Yeah. And I mean, I think one of the interesting things for me, haunted Manchin was one of those things that terrified me as a kid because of the elevator room. And so I never really went on it. And then I started watching some of those behind the scenes with the imagineers that’s on Disney Plus and they had a whole episode about the Haunted Mansion and it was really fascinating to hear how the imagineers basically had two competing thought processes behind Haunted Mansion, where like, where some people were like, it needs to be scary, it’s a haunted ride. And some people were like, it has to be funny. It’s, you know, we’re Disney and so goofy. It kind of became this like clash. But they made both work somehow. So if you go on the ride, you can tell that there’s a distinct point where things turned from like spooky to just comical really. So yeah, it’s, it’s a good ride. It’s a staple. I have not had the opportunity to go on the re themed version that is the Nightmare before Christmas, but that sounds really fun. My brother was supposed to go and experience that, but they couldn’t get Oggie Boogie Bash tickets, so they decided to try again next year.
Yeah, that I’ve done the Nightmare before Christmas version multiple times at Disneyland specifically. And it is it’s an adventure all on its own is what I’ll say. I just, wait,
Wait, wait. Like let’s go back though. Like talk about using your own stuff and repurposing it, right, right, right. Like they, they’re, they’re bringing in just for the month and it draws people in just for that. So, you know, our last episode was about limited time seasonal offers. This is about like using your own things for other things like Disney to Yeah. Using your
Own IP and re theming rides, which Disney does quite a bit. Across various rides. They’ll have like special edition versions of the rides like with the like Ghost Space Mountain, which again isn’t necessarily a specific ip, but they once had like a Star Wars overlay on Space
Mountain. Yeah, it was in Paris.
Yeah to Space
Yeah. Super cool. So what inspired this episode was the fact that they had the stars from the movie at the ride to promote the ride. And like this isn’t something new for Disney. Disney frequently brings in their actors from live action versions of things to promote an upcoming film because so many Disney movies are attached to Disney attractions. One of our favorite examples of this was back when like the Pirates of the Caribbean movies were all the rage, Johnny Depp would occasionally just like pop over to Disneyland. And the last part where you’re like now with the updated ride leaving, I’m trying to say like the, what is it? Like the
Just the end of the ride. Yeah, you’re, and right, so the last part of the ride when you’re just about to like leave the ride you see a Johnny Depp replica sort of like, you know, sitting on top of the Arch and like looking at you and Johnny Depp would actually go in and like, you know, be in places where like fake Johnny Depp is on the ride. And it was like super cool and it caused like a lot of publicity for the film but also the riot itself ’cause people then wanted to go to Disneyland to see if they can actually spot Johnny Depp.
I think what made the one about Haunted Mansion really fun is that it was multiple actors. Yeah. It wasn’t just, I mean the Johnny Depp one kind of felt like he wanted to do that for fun ’cause he loved that character so much and so he would just show up and get in full garb and and do this promotion. But the Haunted Mansion was obviously very intentional and there’s something about seeing Jamie Lee Curtis in the cast member uniform. Yeah. For Haunted Mansion. ’cause I think they were, I’m sure they weren’t operating the ride, but I think they were kind of like helping out as if they were cast members for the ride. Which I just think is a fun way to do it because it probably isn’t the type of ride they could have gotten them into an exhibit on that you could actually
Mansion definitely has a lot of, like when you pass this point, the light is gonna be on a different focal point. So it’s not like they could jump into the set but a lot of fun here. And you know, you’re already in Disneyland, you’re already walking around, you probably had no idea this was happening. It’s not like they pre-announce these. Maybe if the premiere was like that coming weekend or something you might expect there, there might be mentions of it. So this is what we’re talking about where you’re in one product and you find out about another product and because you had that special experience with the first one, you’re like, oh I saw Jamie Lee Curtis, I’m gonna go see that movie. You might not have seen it otherwise. So it’s kind of that promotion within a promotion and some of the ways that this comes out in your business, and I’ll give an example because I have someone who’s working on this right now.
She’s putting together her first course and she’s working on teaching people different things and I said make sure at the end when you’ve done filming all of the tutorial and all the learning and all the training stuff, you go back and film your introduction. You can do the introduction first if you want, but I think it helps to go through all of the material and record all of that and then record your introduction. Because in that video you can say, Hey welcome to the program while you’re in this program you’re going to learn X, Y, Z. And you know what that is because you’ve already recorded it. And if you’re looking for the more advanced topics here, you know, I’ve got another product over here, it’s this course, you know, that’s not for right now, but I just want you to know it exists so that when you’re ready for it after this course, ’cause after this course you’re gonna learn all of these things. You’ll be ready for it, that’s over there. And obviously it not that quick. You can talk about it in different ways, but just kind of previewing what the next step is after the step they’re currently in. And so that’s a promotion for another product inside the product that they’re using. And so I want you to think about things like that and how you can incorporate more of that in your business.
So similar to the point Nicole was making a lot of the time, you know, if someone joins a program, if you have an ascension model in your business, which we talk about at length on this podcast ’cause it’s something we believe all businesses should have, you need to have a pathway for them to go to next. And talking about what that next step is is so crucial and so important. You know, once they finish like, you know, an course that’s more or programs more targeted at someone who’s in the beginning stages of whatever you are teaching, you want to them to know what they have to do next to get to the most advanced stages. Maybe it’s going to a more advanced course, maybe it’s joining a mastermind, maybe it’s joining a membership where they can get, they can get ongoing support. It’s really important to really lay out what that next step is and what that pathway is so they can continue working with you. Because what you don’t want is to give them that you know, baseline of information and have them implemented and when they want to take it to the next level, start seeking out what that next level is and not immediately thinking of you. You may think like, oh they’re in my universe, they know this exists. It goes back to the old marketing adage of like, you have to say something seven times before it actually like sinks into someone’s head.
Well and then sometimes the other part of the what emails you have coming out in your newsletter might not match up or where that person is in your course or Exactly. Or whatever product they’re experiencing. So you might we’re all bad at promoting ourselves, so you might not even be talking about the thing that is there next level for a long time because you’re not planning another promotion for that for four or five months.
So if you embed it in all the other things, it’s right there in front of their face for when they’re ready for it.
Mm-Hmm. . Exactly. Maybe it’s like mentioning that this course is available and if it’s something that you only open up like once a year, the call to action is like, get on the wait list. ’cause At least they’re taking that initial step and they’re gonna receive your promotions when you know things open up again. So always make that next step clear because you wanna remain top of mind when people need you. And I can think of like countless times where this has happened, even with products like physical products, you know, you might buy something for one trip and then next like, you loved it so much, next trip, you wanna think of that brand again. So letting ’em know like the other things that you have available. I’m talking about Disney shops in particular in this example, it is helpful for me, like I travel a fair amount, a little bit less so now that I have a kiddo, but still a fair amount.
And like one thing that I loved was I had bought like a duffel that also turns into a garment bag from a brand. And in my order there’s like a little like sort of brochure thingy of like the other items that they have in their line, like suitcases and stuff. And when it came time for me to like upgrade my luggage, I was like, I love this bag so much, the quality is so good. And I remember that like, oh right, they also have this. So I went immediately to them even though it was like almost a year later when this need came about, just because I like had literally glanced through the marketing material at the time and thought about, oh, that’s cool that they have that. Maybe I’ll keep ’em in mind when I need new luggage, when I need new luggage. I didn’t bother searching because I was so pleased with the quality of this one big, I felt like I would get a good deal and a good product if I purchased from that company again and I did. So promote your products from within is so, so, so important.
Yeah. Especially if someone doesn’t opt to purchase that right away. Mm-Hmm. , you still need to come
Back to it. You wanna plant a seed, you wanna plant the seed. It’s better to do that than not be top of mind at all when they’re thinking of making that purchase.
I think the other thing that goes along with this is sometimes this is the work that you don’t think about if you’re doing content consistently, which most of us probably are not, but some of us are, you know, sending a monthly email, writing a blog a month, that type of thing. If you’re doing content consistently, are you going back to that content? Are you linking back to mm-Hmm products that have been created since that resource was made? Are you linking to other blog posts that you’ve made since then that are related, like planting the seed, getting the related content in there? And I mean, I would say that the contract shop did a lot of this where we’d go back to old blog posts that were still getting traction from Pinterest clicks and we would update them to make sure they linked to new contracts that exist that didn’t exist previously that were related to that topic.
Just going back to your old content and, and kind of weaving a web where someone who is there and who is interested is going down the rabbit hole. You need to build the rabbit hole. It doesn’t just happen. They sometimes people can be reading a blog and they’ll click the menu bar and go somewhere else, but very rarely they’re gonna click the link that’s right there. So builds the rabbit hole. If you’re just putting things out there and never linking back to another resource. I’m gonna challenge you to think about what else do I have that I can point to from this.
So thank you again for joining us for another episode. I hope you learned that there are many ways that you can drive your existing customers to other products. So whether they’re ready right then or ready in the future, they will think of you when they need to make that next purchase.
If you wanna hear more from us, make sure to subscribe on iTunes, Spotify, or wherever you listen to your podcast episodes. And go ahead and send us a DMM or follow us on Instagram. We’re at @pixiedustandprofits and we would love to hear from you. We love chatting Disney, we love chatting business. So just send us a message. We’re happy to chat and we’ll see you real soon.
Oct 31, 2023
Yasmine (00:00): Hello and welcome back to the eighth season of Pixie Dust and Profits. I’m Yasmine.
Nicole (00:07): I don’t believe that. I don’t believe it’s been eight seasons. I’m Nicole.
Yasmine (00:11): Yeah. Like can you believe it? Like, it’s been eight seasons of doing this and I just remember like a couple years ago we were at a retreat sitting a few people apart, you know, looking at each other, being like, gonna start our podcast this year. Yeah, we’re gonna start our podcast this year.
Nicole (00:27): And that was after we had started the idea for the part podcast. Like, I don’t know, a year earlier. Yeah.
Yasmine (00:33): Where we first met. Yeah.
Nicole (00:35): It
Yasmine (00:35): Took us a year to decide. We wanted to do a podcast where we could talk about Disney and business are two favorite subjects in the world.
Nicole (00:41): It’s, it’s been really fun. Gosh, we’ve gone through so much like it started out as just being really excited about Disney and business case studies and then we went through like the pandemic and now we have retreats in Orlando with female business owners who wanna get stuff done and have some magic in the background while they do it. And our next one’s in February if you didn’t know. So go ahead and check that out at pixiedustandprofits.com slash live.
Yasmine (01:10): And we are actually splurging on the ultimate Disney experience in this one. We are renting a three bedroom villa for the retreat. So if you attend with us, you can stay in one of like Disney’s biggest rooms that they offer on property, which we’re super excited about. And it’s, it’s probably gonna be like a, maybe a once in a lifetime experience for us too, because those things are crazy expensive. But we managed to make the numbers work for this retreat.
Nicole (01:39): Yeah, and you know what, talking about going to Disney as often as we have, which I feel like it’s slowed down, it’s probably once a year or so now, but it, you get to try something different every time. Right. And I tell this to people all the time, you know, sometimes it can be a little bit embarrassing when my kid’s like, we’re going to Disney and so i’s like, oh, have a great time. Is it your first trip? And then he looks at them and says this is like my ninth or 10th trip. And so as a mom you’re like, but you know, that’s where we spend our vacation money and the thing that we love about it is that we don’t stress about mm-hmm. hitting certain rides or having to do everything. And every time we find something a little bit more fun and magical, we’ve definitely talked on this podcast about like the scavenger hunt around Epcot.
Nicole (02:25): And I think the last time we were there something came up and it was one of those days where there was like a rainstorm and somehow we just started collecting all of the 50th anniversary trophies on the play Disney app. And so we actually ended up getting all of them because we made like a last minute 7:00 PM run to Magic Kingdom to just collect them all, you know. So yeah, this episode’s all about the things that Disney does to surprise and delight the regular visitor, but also those repeating visitors with limited time offers.
Yasmine (03:05): Yes. And this is one of my favorite things about going back to Disney. Like obviously by the time I tend to go back every year, there’s usually like a new ride. You know, they, on average they put out like one new ride a year at minimum. It
Nicole (03:20): Feels like that, especially
With Nicole (03:22): Tron and yeah.
Yasmine (03:23): Galaxy’s
Nicole (03:23): Edge and I don’t even know what’s coming out next
Yasmine (03:26): Party’s the Galaxy Ride that we went on. Oh my God, that’s like my new favorite ride at Epcot. But in addition to that, Disney is really, really good with their limited time offers, like Nicole said, primarily in the areas of merch and snacks. And I think we’re gonna kick it off by talking about snacks ’cause
Nicole (03:47): That we can, but then you said merch and I started thinking about like the hundred anniversary a hundred years as their current merch line. Mm-Hmm. I don’t really love it as much as I loved like the purple colors they had for the 50th celebration. And it’s also really confusing to go from a 50th celebration to a hundred years. But, you know, Disney does their own way of making all of these things feel very limited time and very special, but for food. Okay. So food is like the easiest thing for Disney to make special and different. So you’ve got stuff like May the fourth for Star Wars and they start having like special popcorn buckets that only come out. Then I, this is making me think about the P bucket for Figment and Epcot where there were lines all the way to the front of the park waiting to get this figment popcorn bucket. I think when we started looking at some of the more recent ones, 6 26, so June 26th, 6 26 was stitches experiment number in Lilo and Stitch. So they had a special like blueberry lemonade, mose cake just for stitch and it looked like him. So I wanted to see like if there’s anything recent, and I just have to share this because I don’t even think I’ve shown Yasmin the picture yet, but Yasmine loves Dole Whips. If you don’t know I
Yasmine (05:05): Love Doll Whip, like
Nicole (05:07): It’s a special, I we were on pixie dust live and you had blisters all over your feet.
Yasmine (05:13): Yep.
Nicole (05:14): And the only thing you did, you walked to the Dole Whips, you got your Dole Whip and then you were like, I have to go back to the room.
Yasmine (05:21): Do not get your shoes wet on the first day because you’re walking in the rain and then proceed to walk around Epcot in those wet shoes because your feet will not like you pro tip.
Nicole (05:33): But the, the Dole Whip must have helped. But
Yasmine (05:35): I, I will suffer for Dole Whip every time. It’s so good.
Nicole (05:40): So if you don’t know right now it’s early October, this episode’s probably coming out early November. So, so the Mickey’s not so scary Halloween party is going on and one of the treats that they have right now, they like to experiment with Dole Whips and at Storybrook Treats, which storybook treats, which is right between like meeting the princesses and Winnie the Pooh. They have all these like limited edition ice creams and that’s usually the ice cream cone you see snapped on Instagram because it just looks so cool. I still remember the one that was like Rapunzel. But right now they have the Hades Cone and so it’s a dull whip that’s coated with like just some like blue raspberry shell. It’s super sweet. It looks like Skittles. But then they put some Totten sauce, no, like
Yasmine (06:29): Spice Spice
Nicole (06:30): On top of it and it’s the Hades cone. ’cause You know, he’s a little bit spicy, but he’s still cool. But yeah, they just do stuff like this all the time. So even if I am not an ice cream person, if I get a some ice cream, like my husband will eat it all in the house. That’s not, that’s not my vice. But it’s, they just look so fun. How can you not go and get the fun looking ice cream cone?
Yasmine (06:52): Seriously? It’s so good. The
Nicole (06:53): Cone is blue.
Yasmine (06:55): Yeah. And like I, I’ll be honest, every time I go to Magic Kingdom or any park, I totally overestimate the amount of snacks I can eat. Because I’m like, I have a list of like five things I wanna try and I get like two off of the list and I’m so full. And I think it has something to do with like the Florida heat. Yeah,
Nicole (07:14): Yeah.
Yasmine (07:14): I, it, I think it just like kills my hunger a little bit. But I’ve only been able to try a special edition Dole Whip once because I always have to get the original, like I have to, it’s, it’s a non-negotiable on my trip I need to get Dole Whip. But then after that I got like a seasonal Dole Whip and I think it was actually the Polynesian Oh
Nicole (07:34): Yeah. Who
Yasmine (07:34): Went together. I got like a, one of the special like float type thingies that they had at the time. And it’s so good. And like, that’s the thing about Disney, like you will constantly see Disney influencers or just people going to the park sharing these limited edition treats and you have to be there to try it because they’ll go away and I will like literally look up all of the fancy treats that they have before every trip because I wanna make sure I’m gonna try the one that they have villa at the time before it’s gone.
Nicole (08:04): So when we’re thinking about these like limited time offers, right? It really comes back to like our businesses. Mm-Hmm. Like what are you doing that’s for a limited time? And it could be the product that you sell, you are just having the doors open and close. It could be that you’re doing like a special, you know, I’m just doing this seven day program and it’s the only time that you can get it. ’cause I’m, I’m, this is what everyone’s feeling right now. So I’m leaning into that and we’re gonna do this all together. It could be if you’re a product seller, you know, just you see trends that are coming out and you’re like, limited edition, let’s follow in on the trend. And so Disney does this with everything. Like food is obviously an easy way for them to mix things up because it’s just food.
Nicole (08:48): You’re putting different ingredients together. But they do this even with like their credit card designs. Mm-Hmm. I just got a mailer yesterday that was like, we now have Avengers credit card designs, turn in your design and get a new one. I’m still holding on to my 50 year anniversary with the pretty gold sparkly castle, but my husband did just change his to Darth Vader. So, you know, they send these flyers out to like get a new card. So you’re excited about your credit card just to see that it looks different. And so you can think about this in terms of like drops mm-hmm.
Nicole (09:23): And just especially with merch, but you can do this with a service-based or a digital product-based business as well.
Yasmine (09:33): I mean, that’s like trial offers too. For example, having like the first month of your membership discounted to let people, you know, try it out for a limited time and then, you know, renew them on the regular price. It could be, you know, offering something up for free for a limited time and then charging for it. One of my clients, this is in October, literally just wrapped up a big summit. And Nicole, I know one of your clients is that too every year. And you know, we have the sessions available for people to watch for free for the first 24 hours, but after that, if they want to catch a sessions or watch them again, they need to upgrade to a pass, which is a very like, nominal fee that gives ’em access to a ton of value. But these limited time offers get people through the door by offering the sessions for free upfront. People get to like sample things out, see they like it and they’re willing to invest to get access to everything. So
Nicole (10:27): Especially these days where, I mean I, if you’ve been in this space long enough, you’ve probably bought a course from someone mm-hmm. That you didn’t need or you got into it and you’re like, oh, I already knew all of this. Or you get into it and you’re like, I can’t believe I was charged that much and the videos this quality or something like that. And so summits really give a great way of reviewing what you’re going to see inside and what you’re going to get. And so it’s definitely like limited time kind of puts people in a little bit of a pressure cooker to make a decision, but at the same time it also gives them a taste of something fun, something exciting something that’s different from the norm. I was actually talking about this recently with a client who, you know, has this course where she’s teaching people something about art and then from there she’s like, how do I do more of this?
Nicole (11:18): But not shortchange the people who were, who bought it already. Like, do I have to give them everything I make for the next two years for free? Like, no, like, I’m a gamer. Let me think about this in terms of gaming, you have a season pass to the content, right? So you’ve got the baselines that you needed to know and now we’re gonna do a seasonal drop. And for this season you, you’re gonna have all of these new things to learn and we’ll do all of that together. And you have access to it forever, but you’re, you’re only getting the season pass with these six new things that we’re teaching. So I think about it in, in content drops and season passes when it comes to things like I’ve been playing Diablo lately and season two’s coming up, right? So those are the things that you think about where, how can we take what they’re doing in other industries and kind of morph them in a way and use them how it works for our own businesses. But I love the idea of a seasonal drop. So it’s, it also makes your course more affordable because then you can say you’ve got these options you can add on. So once you’ve got the basics, now you can learn the more advanced stuff and you’re not trying to put people in, get access to everything for $2,000. And that’s really off-putting to someone who is a beginner or a novice and they’re just like kind of trying to dabble or it’s their current fixation for, you know, 30 to 90 days.
Yasmine (12:43): I know that give them
Nicole (12:43): The opportunity.
Yasmine (12:45): Yeah. And like the other thing that I love about that idea is we don’t put our customers in a position of information overwhelm, which has been the trend with courses I would say in the past couple years where it’s like, oh my gosh, that’s
Nicole (13:01): Everything. Yeah.
Yasmine (13:01): All this information for this like, price. And then it ends up being like so much people don’t know where to start. Right?
Nicole (13:09): We did the advice for so long was like, get that, that image stack graphic that has absolutely everything. And then you started seeing these ads on Facebook or Instagram that were like, it’s an iPad screen and a phone and then a computer monitor and on that laptop and then a digital like printed thing. And like it’s just the whole screen is taken up by these like mockups of what you’re going to get. And it was just, I think especially after the pandemic, people are like, I need to simplify. I need less in my space. I need to focus. Even if I don’t feel like I can focus, I just, I can’t handle giving me the kitchen sink ice cream from Beach Club.
Yasmine (13:54): Wholeheartedly agree. It ends up being just too much to parse. And I, and the idea originally was to show the value, like you’re getting all this stuff for this incredible price, but like, it, it’s sort of like buying something on sale that you don’t necessarily need. Just because it’s on sale doesn’t mean that you necessarily have to buy it, you know? And in this case, like you’re getting all these things that you might not need and you could be paying more than if you just got like that one thing you need. But how do you know? ’cause There’s so much to go through. So
Nicole (14:25): It reminds me of those promotions that are like, get to $50 for free shipping. Mm-Hmm.
Yasmine (14:30): <Affirmative>.
Nicole (14:30): And sometimes they’re good ’cause it’s like, oh, okay, I can get to $50. But when they’re like, get to $70 for free shipping and all of the things that you wanna buy, add up to $69 mm-hmm like, it feels slimy and it makes me abandon my cart entirely because I’m like, oh, now I’m not getting a discount because you’re forcing me to spend a hundred hundred mm-hmm., like, I’m willing to spend 75 mm-hmm.
Nicole (14:54): And so you just kind of feel like gross about it. And so I think there’s a balance to everything we do. And just like anything else in life, sometimes it goes a little too far in one direction and I think we’re swinging back in the opposite direction where it’s all about simplicity and then we’ll go back into the middle in another year or two. Like it’s just gonna, it’s a pendulum, it’s gonna keep swinging, but simplicity I think is key right now. So yeah, think about your business, how you can bring in this like limited time exclusive merge, just short term fun. Like how can you bring that into your brand? Maybe it’s in how you do your social media. It doesn’t even have to be related to your product. I think Nicole Yang does a really wonderful job with this. If you go look at her Instagram profile, she kind of has like a magazine where two, like six, it’s like a six block.
Nicole (15:46): So the first two rows of her Instagram show, like, here’s what’s going on. It looks like a magazine. It’s a different color from the month before. It’s fun. It’s like, it feels like, it feels like a content drop. It feels like you’re getting something new. So it doesn’t have to necessarily be about your products or sales or anything like that. It could just be in how you’re talking to your audience or where you’re showing up. Do a two week content drop by trying out TikTok and then go back to your original audience and say, here’s, I spent two weeks on TikTok. Here’s what I learned. It, it doesn’t have to be anything crazy, but it has to be fun.
Yasmine (16:20): So true. So thank you for joining us for our first episode back for season eight. We’ve got so many things to talk about this season, lots of ideas. So definitely stay tuned if you want to join. Nicole and I live at Disney World for Pixie Dust & Profits live in February. We still, I think we have one seat left, Nicole.
Nicole (16:41): Yeah, just one.
Yasmine (16:42): Yeah. And we don’t expect that to last for long. So head over to pixiedustandprofits.com/live. If you don’t follow us on Instagram. We are @pixiedustandprofits on there. And thanks again and we’ll see you real soon. Bye bye.
Jul 18, 2023
Hi everyone. Welcome to this week’s episode of Pixie Dust & Profits. Today we’re talking all about the Genie+ Changes. Now, if you dunno who we are, I’m Nicole.
And I’m Yasmine.
And this is our summer snack series of Pixie Dust & Profits. We’re bringing you short and sweet episodes for the summer while you’re probably taking some time off your business or we hope that you’re taking some time off of your business. So today we have some brand new CHA changes coming for the Genie+ system. If you haven’t been to Disney since the Pandemic Genie+ is essentially what replaced the Fast Pass system of years past. We now have this kind of two-tier system for Lightning lanes where you can buy individual lightning lanes to the big ticket rides. Like what do we have? Seven Doors, mind Train, rise, is that still? Yeah, rise on it. The
I think so. Tron as well. The Neutron Ride.
Yep. Guardians of the Galaxy. All of
Of those rights of the resistance.
And so you can buy the individual passes to those rides that would otherwise have a very long wait or have a high demand. And then you can also buy Genie+, which is access to a system that allows you to re reserve a Lightning lane pass for one ride at a time. And you can only ride the red once. So if you’re familiar with Universal, you can buy an express pass that lasts all day long and you can go on the ride as many times as you want. And so today we’re talking a little bit about these changes. So at a baseline, all you really need to understand is when you buy Genie+ you have access to being able to get lightning cleans at all of the parks right now. And so there’s strategies around it. I will send you to Wish upon a planner if you would like to learn all the strategies, but we’ve had some good times and some times where it was kind of a waste of money. It can vary. It used to be a flat rate of, what was it, like $11? The first time we did it,
It was 15. So when we had gone to Disney with Pixie Dust & Profits live, this was like two years ago, right Nicole? Yeah, it was like our second day. That was literally, it was literally, yeah, the second day it came out, the first day it came out, Nicole and I were there. We got it to try around at Epcot just to see what it was like to familiarize ourselves with it. And then the second day, that was when everyone else joined us and you know, we started using it for our park trips and yeah, it was 15 bucks per person. Yeah, think it’s not 15 bucks per person anymore. I’m not talking box for a person anymore.
I was there as a personal trip in April, which was kind of during the spring break time, so that’s probably one of the most expensive times of the year. And I think there was a day that it was like $25 each. So it can get pretty pricey if you have a large group. Fortunately only have a family of three, so it’s not too bad for us. But, you know, we’ve had the great experience where on one trip I was grabbing lightning lanes all morning long for the park. We were going to go to that night night, which was Hollywood Studios. And somehow we got to Hollywood Studios at seven at night. It was just me and my husband that our kiddo was with his grandma and we had lightning lanes for everything. We had like Rise, slinky Dog, millennium Falcon tower Terror was closed at that point I think.
So we didn’t get a chance to go on that, but we, we basically had everything all for after 7:00 PM so that was an amazing experience and probably like best case scenario, but I’ve also been on the flip side of that coin where we, we purchased it for a day also at Hollywood Studios hoping to save some time and you know, my kid very bravely went on rides of the Resistance for the first time and really enjoyed it. But he was done with rides after that. He did not want to go on any other rides. And so we had bought this Genie Plus and really did not use it that day at all. We didn’t get any of our money’s worth at all. So definitely go check out Wish Upon and Planner if you need some good strategies for using it. But I, we say all of this because to give context to the changes, there were definitely parks that you would just say no, I don’t need Genie Plus if I’m going to Animal Kingdom today the Safari is really never more than like a 15 minute wait for at certain times of the year.
Expedition Everest, you can walk on the single rider line most of the time and even when you wait with friends, it doesn’t take that long. It’s just not a park where lions are the problem. And so
And the rides that do have long lines, well there’s the individual Lightning Lane pass for that. Yes. Like flight of Passage, the avatar ride, so
Right. So it’s a separate pass. So why would you buy Gen Plus if you’re just gonna buy that individual more premium ride? So you know, it’s not really worth it for, for that park. And then Epcot to a lesser extent, depending on what you wanna do at Epcot because you know, I think it’s cosmic rewind, the Guardians of the Galaxy Rollercoaster is on its own individual pass, but Remy I believe is now on the regular pass for the day. Mm-Hmm. So you’re really getting it for test track Remy and frozen. And you know, if you don’t have kids that are interested in any of those, then you might not need it. Testra being the one that goes down the most often. And I’d say if you really, really, really need to go and test track, you might wanna consider it. But essentially Disney saw this, right? They saw the data they had, they saw, you know, what people going into Animal Kingdom and people going to Epcot or not buying Genie Plus and we want them to buy it because that’s more money in our pockets.
Well, especially as the prices increased. So originally it was sort of like a flat rate of like $15 per park, but then it started to increase based on how busy the parks were. Right? So it was like it was demand, right. Higher demand for it higher price and you know, there would be days where the price would go up to 30, $32. I think even 34 I remember hearing for
Gene Yeah. In March person
Spring break. Yeah. Yeah. And, and the thing about the Genie plus to get the most use out of it in some ways you kind of had to buy park hop tickets because mm-hmm, you would, you know, in the morning you would kind of get your lightning lanes for the afternoon for whichever park you were switching to. And they, they put somebody restrictions around park hopping that you can’t do it till after 2:00 PM and you have to go to your new park because of the pandemic that I think they just started seeing that this was all getting so complex. I mean some of you probably understand everything we are saying and the rest of you were like, I can’t follow any of this. And so they knew that this is getting complex for their audience. They could tell with the questions coming in, the complaints at the customer service booths, what, what do they call them? Like the customer experience, like those happy booths they have? Yeah,
The guest services. Yeah. Yeah.
So they were, you know, they have all this data and so one of the things that they decided to do was, well, we still wanna get our money for Genie Plus and we still wanna have this dynamic pricing so we can charge more money when things are busier because we’re Disney and we want revenue and profit. So now they’ve split it. So you can buy a multi park Genie Plus or you can buy a single park Genie Plus. And in some ways it simplifies things based on like if you have a park hopping ticket or not. I think they’re also doing away with needing to have park reservations starting in January, which is should also help this kind of problem where you’re like stuck into a park.
The caveat right now though is like, that’s for dated tickets is what they’re guaranteeing like after January. Yeah. So if you buy like a gated ticket, I, I said gated, I meant dated. So it’s for like, you know, January 4th through 17th or whatever. That’s a really long window, but you know what I mean, like yeah, you don’t have to worry about reservations. Not a hundred percent sure if it’s completely being done away with for annual passes, but we’ll see.
Yeah. So like with all this backstory, I think the thing we really wanna touch on is, first of all, Disney makes their decisions based on data, but that doesn’t always mean the, they are ignoring like the feelings part or the like how users actually use it. So yeah, they’re getting a lot of questions and confusion and you know, they’re like, okay, we’ll make a, a single park pass and a multi-part pass and it’s cheaper for these. And we have some that are on their individual passes. It’s still really complex to understand and they’re trying so hard to be innovative because they’re Disney that when you turn around and look at what other parks are doing, like universal, universal is very expensive. It’s, you know, the trips I’ve been in the area that’s at least $200 a person. But you go and you get this unlimited express pass, it’s $200 and you can use it the whole day at the park you’re at. You just keep going on the ride, you wanna go on, they have a lane for you to like walk right on and you can go on that ride however many times. I think we did Flight of the Hippogriff five times cuz my kid really enjoyed that. You know, family rollercoaster. So Disney’s trying so hard to be innovative and different that is this really helpful? Yeah. So they just charge $300 for a pass .
I mean if they charge $300 for a pass, I think we would see a lot of, a lot of angry posts in Facebook groups and and stuff. Absolutely. But, but yeah, like they’re, they’re trying to, you know, like created this amazing app. I mean maybe amazing is debatable, but they created this like complex app which does a lot like, it gives you recommendations on how to plan your day. It takes into consideration like where you are in the park and what you have planned to help guide you. Which if you were newer to Disney, that can be a valuable tool in your pocket. But of course with it comes all of these you know, priced experiences that historically were free and included in your park ticket. Like in the past the benefit was booking on Disney property because you got advanced access to picking out your fast passes, you get three per day and then after that it’s like once you use all those up you can get an additional one but you’d have to like use up your initial three.
And it was it was, you know, great for everyone cuz it sort of leveled the playing field, but with obviously increasing costs and seeing what other parks are doing, Disney knew that there was revenue to be made. So they created the Genie Plus system and it sort of worked into all of the restrictions and changes that came after the pandemic. Everything sort of changed. So it was an easy way for them to be like, well we’re not doing Fast passes anymore, we’re doing this. But one thing that I have to give Disney props for, does anyone say that anymore? Nicole? Giving props my dating myself. I think I just did.
Yeah. You know, they, they take the w
Yeah, they took the W Yeah, yeah. What what Disney takes a W four. Please don’t make fun of me on the internet. Any Gen Z we’re totally
Get a DM that’s like you use that entirely wrong. Yeah, yeah.
Well, but they are not afraid to kill their darlings and in this case they’re not killing Genie Plus, but Disney is like, they have, they’ve scrapped entire projects that they’ve invested quite a bit of money into. If they saw that it wasn’t gonna, you know, bring a good return the Star Wars hotel, right? Like that’s the most recent one. They literally scrapped a product they spent millions upon millions on because it just wasn’t profitable. And they’re gonna shift directions and who knows what they’re gonna do. We’re gonna find out hopefully in the coming months and years. But they are okay with taking the data into consideration, taking the customer feedback and shifting gears because they do not want to sink money into something that is not maximizing revenue for them and profits. And
I think this is really important to keep in mind as a small business owner, like oh hundred percent, I have seen so many clients who are just like changing things nonstop . And it’s like, you know what, sometimes I get frustrated as the operations manager with that because it’s hard to like keep projects on track. But at the same time, like Disney isn’t afraid to just up and say, you know what, we’re completely changing the system. We don’t care that you already have a trip planned cuz people plan their trips but like a year out and they’re just, okay, you know, there’s gonna be millions of people that this will affect and we’re just gonna, we’re gonna roll it out and we’ll deal with the customer service that comes with it. So, you know, take some of those chances of like, don’t be afraid to, to change things if they’re, you know, not working. But it’s so interesting because I feel like this system is still so complex mm-hmm and they’re still trying to do it with data. But you know
What, the price will increase and decrease depending on demand to a degree. But like you’re no longer paying 34 bucks for Animal Kingdom. It’ll be like 16 or $17 in. Yeah.
I feel like a lot of these parks are like, let’s do the premium experience where it’s just like easy one and done. You know, we upsell you how many people are gonna convert when something’s $300 versus you know, the mobile game method that Disney’s playing here where it’s like, oh, it’s just an extra 10, it’s just an extra 15. And then, you know, you look at your credit card statement at the end of the month and you’re like, oh, that was a lot of extra 10. Yeah.
One of my my in-laws friends explained it as like, 30 dollaring you to death. It’s like, oh, it’s $30 for this, it’s $30 for that. They, they were talking about like yard equipment cuz we had recently renovated our backyard and need to get like a new hose attachments, like, oh, it’s just $30, but you’re like spending 30 here, 30 there. Before you know it, it’s like several hundred dollars that you have spent without really thinking of it because you just see, oh, it’s like 10 bucks per guest or 16 bucks per guest. Yeah, that’s not that much, but spread it over your whole trip. It adds up a bit.
Absolutely. And you know, when we come back to like your, your business, what, what products do you have? What price points do you have? Are you trying to be the, let’s have a lot of things at $27 and go for like volume where, you know, Disney probably nets out ahead of Universal in this, you know mm-hmm. Realm. And some of that’s just due to the sheer numbers Disney brings in. But when you look at it, it’s probably because of what Yasmine Yasmines was just talking about what Yasmine, princess deal, what Yasmines was just talking about, right. Where you are $30 to death and you’re just $30 doesn’t sound like much when you’re looking at a water bottle that’s $8. I won’t say that their water bottles are probably closer to $4. It’s the, it’s the alcoholic beverages that Yeah. Get into the numbers when you’re like, oh, well you, you know what? I can get Genie+ instead of getting a margarita, it’s the same prey. Mm-Hmm. But yeah, so just, just keep in mind it’s okay to change, it’s okay to be innovative, but at the same time make sure you’re getting data from your customers on like, is this working? And some of that data might be indirect, it might be nobody’s buying
Mm-Hmm. and I recently went through an experience with this, with a client of mine, and I know like Nicole, you’ve been seeing this in the industry as well, where, you know, we have a premium product and it comes with a premium price and we notice that sales are down because literally like we’re in a recession, you know, people are holding onto their dollars a little bit more, but they still want that support. We still get, you know, an outreach of messages people for people looking for support. So we looked at, you know, we have our product, it’s a good product. We don’t necessarily want to change the product, but we need to change our strategy for bringing revenue into the business. And rather than, you know, steeply discount our products and take away from the premium value that this client offers, we looked into creating a newer lower cost product that wouldn’t necessarily, you know, take away from her current offerings.
And that’s a product that we’re working on right now to bring in revenue and you have to be able to like adapt and you have to be able to change. And one of the consequences of introducing this product is we ended up killing one of our launches that we typically have every fall because right now it wasn’t the right time for it. You know, we knew that the projections weren’t going to help us hit the goals that we needed to as a business, so we pivoted to a degree. And that indirect feedback was what drove it ultimately. So like, don’t be afraid of change, but at the same time I wanna caveat like don’t change things all the time too quickly. Like it’s easy to have like, you know, a fear of something not working and wanting to pivot right away, but like, wait for some data that like, that’s important because what you don’t want to do is be all over the place.
Well thanks so much for joining us today and make sure you tune in for next week. We’ll have another summer Snack bite series episode of Pixie Dust & Profits. By the way, if you’re interested in joining us at Pixie Dust Live, which we talked about earlier in this episode, you can go to pixiedustandprofits.com/live to find out about our new events or sign up about the wait list when our events eventually fill up, which they always do. So thanks for joining us today and we’ll see you real soon.
Jul 11, 2023
Nicole, you know what really grinds my gears? It’s when
I’m sure the list is long, so like, can we narrow it down?
Okay. Okay. So what grinds my gears at Disney is when I am in the bathroom, you know, I’ve done my business washing my hands and I wanna adjust my ears because, you know, they get like wonky during the day and there’s no mirror. Like, have you ever noticed that if you go to a Disney washroom and you’re washing your hands at the stations, there are no mirrors?
Yeah, pretty, pretty often. I, I, I know that I’m always like, I have so much hair, so it’s so hot down there and I hate putting my hair up. But in Florida it’s kind of a necessity. Necessity sometimes. So, and after the rollercoasters when your hair is like all over the place, you’re like, I just wanna make sure that I don’t look like a crazy person, .
Right, right. Well, before we get into this episode, I do wanna introduce us and say, welcome to Pixie Dust & Profits. We are doing our summer snack size series where we are doing shorter episodes every week to keep you motivated in your business all summer long. And, and today we’re gonna be talking about keeping things moving. So Nicole, why don’t you tell us why Disney has no mirrors?
Yeah, so if you go to Disney, you’ll notice this, especially in the newer areas. So if you go to Magic Kingdom, this may not be as true. Mm-Hmm, because all of the restroom areas are older, you know, 50 years, there was just an anniversary. But if you go to probably like the Rati area, often you’ll find that the bathrooms in Disney are intentionally designed. They’re always available in some quick to get to location, so they’re always thinking about that. But the bathroom itself, Disney is a place where queuing theory and engineering need to be top-notch because so many people go there every single day. So in the bathrooms you’ll walk in and, you know, there’s the stalls and then there’s where you wash your hands. And usually there is not a mirror where you’re washing your hand, it’s actually in like the outside area where people may be waiting in line to for their turn. And there’s a reason for that. And the reason is, first of all, it reduces vandalism. You can’t have cameras in a bathroom, but if there’s beers there, people know that, like other people can see them. So there’s that. But mostly it’s to keep people moving because if you’re standing there waiting to wash your hands and someone’s putting their lipstick on or
Or adjusting their ears,
Adjusting their ears or their hair or whatever it, you know, that’s just going to take extra time. And so you’d end up waiting and then no one can move between the stalls because you’re taking all the room up in the middle. Like it’s really intentional that they, in the newer restrooms have the mirrors in a separate location. They’re also full like mirrors. So I actually really appreciate it cuz then you can see your whole fit.
But yeah, they don’t want to have any bottlenecks in the bathrooms and they wanna keep things flowing. And you know, Disney does that in a lot of interesting ways in other parts of the park too. And I could go into more detail on that, but this is a snack size series. We’re keeping it short and sweet. So what we wanna do is look at bottlenecks in your business. And I know that we’ve talked about, you know, bottlenecks in the sense of like, sometimes you are the bottleneck in your business, you’re slowing progress down, but in this case we wanna look at things more systemically. What are the processes in your business that keep everything from flowing smoothly? I can speak to one in my product based business. Should I start there, Nicole?
Yeah, yeah. Okay. So let everyone know what your product based business is.
So in addition to this podcast and running my consulting company, I do run sort of a crystal and, you know, ritual tool shop called Lunar Drift apothecary. And back when I first started the shop, we had like a really, really high volume of orders. And it was, it was a little bit crazy. I I would basically work, you know, from nine to five in my consulting business and in the wee hours of the morning when I was not with my daughter, when she basically before she woke up, after I dropped her off at school and at night after she went to bed, I was like packing orders, like nonstop. And one thing that I did at first, cuz it was really important to me was like, write a handwritten thank you note with every single package. And I still maintain that. That’s a nice touch. And I personally love it when I get a handwritten note from a small business, but it was taking me so long to write them because A, my penmanship is atrocious, you know, I like, so I constantly had to like scrap notes and like rewrite them from scratch. B again, I was handwriting like, you know, a couple sentences for every single order that I got and I was shipping out hundreds of orders a week. And three
For context, she launched those business and had a few like semi viral, like minor viral videos Yeah. On TikTok. And so this was around Christmas time in the holidays mm-hmm. So she had an influx of many, many, many, many orders. Yeah. So handwriting it was intense. A hundred of these was definitely difficult.
Yeah. And like the third issue that I had was, wait, Holland, I forgot my third thing handwriting. Oh, right. And the third thing was, I’m so used to typing all day, and this goes back to the fact that my penmanship is atrocious. My like actual handwriting muscle muscles are not strong. Like, I rarely write things these days, honestly, like I’m typing everything that I do and I’m gonna be honest, like I do not have the skills I did back when I was in school because we’re constantly typing, so it just delayed the process. So I need to make a pivot because this was slowing down how quickly I can get orders out. Like it wasn’t just packing crystals, which takes longer than, you know, just putting a few like shirts and a poly mailer. Not to say that that packing process isn’t like intentional, it takes a while.
I had to individually wrap every single crystal to make sure they don’t break in transit because they can be fragile. So I needed to do something to expedite the flow and the pivot that I made was, instead of, you know, having these four by six little promo cards that were intentionally made for writing like notes to every client, I ended up ma redesigning them into a smaller format. I put some of the information that I would’ve written in my note, like thanking them for their order, giving them a coupon code, you know, where to find me on social. But I also included a little area where if I didn’t wanna write something extra, I had that space to do it. And then what I did instead was on their invoices. I would always like, you know, write a little, I thank you so much, or like a little comment about what they ordered. I still put a personal touch there, but again, I wasn’t sitting, going through every single order and writing, you know, five to eight sentences for each person. And I actually like almost doubled the amount of orders I was able to ship out per week because that’s how long it freaking took me to write notes.
Isn’t that long. Yeah. And I imagine with a little toddler in the house if she saw you writing notes, she would also want to write notes or write on her notes.
Oh, oh yes. My customers often get little pictures and drawings on their like invoices and stuff from my daughter when she’s around when I’m doing shipping. So but yeah, it would’ve been way worse at that volume.
Yeah. So we’re, we’re talking about like, you don’t need to remove the mirrors and entirely from the bathroom, you just need to move them a little bit and flow will improve. So where Yasmine, you know, kind of made a pre-printed card that had a lot of information but still had space to just say like, thanks name. Even that goes a long way and that’s a quick thing to write. You know, that’s kind of a process about bottleneck. We often talk about like the analysis paralysis, waiting for perfection, the like internal bottlenecks to yourself. But I also wanna talk about team bottlenecks and whether you have a large team or you have a small team that’s just, you know, one virtual assistant who maybe writes the show notes for your podcast and gets them published for you. And so when you’re talking about teams, sometimes the bottlenecks are like your leadership or your communication if you don’t have a way to let them make decisions.
So for a while we stalled on Instagram because it was just relying on us to write the content and get it moving. And it was, you know, the podcast is kind of a passion project for us. We have a lot of fun with it, but our day jobs are our consulting businesses. And so at earlier this year we just kind of gave the green light to the team of, look, we have 70 something episodes of this podcast. We have tons of content you can pull from and we have a lot of wonderful photos of Disney courtesy of Allie at Wish Upon a planner and also Laura Foot Photography. So go check those two guys out. But go ahead, take the pictures, write whatever you wanna write and you have a blanket. Go ahead. These are people we worked with for long enough that we know that they’re not gonna be writing anything scandalizing or vandalism for our social channels, but we were holding up that process so much and we didn’t clearly communicate that we were okay with them just publishing.
Mm-Hmm. So they had some things were in here and there, so it wasn’t just that they were waiting for us to tell them to do the work. They were waiting for that autonomy of this is a decision I trust you to be able to make, and I’m okay with what the result is going to be. You guys have shown that you’ve been able to do this work. And so just think about the communication. You might be in your head saying, I wish people would do X, Y, z I wish they would take this off my plate. But if you’re not communicating that in a way that your team understands, whether that’s like tasks or having a meeting, we don’t have a lot of team meetings with our VAs. We, you know, often send boxer messages, which is audio back and forth, or we talk in Asana, which is our task-based system. But you know, we actually said, you know what, this is important enough that we need to get in a room together. We need to have like a 20 minute meeting. Just say like, hi everyone, just want you to know we love what you’re doing. Just hit publish, we’re okay with it. And so now we have our Instagram engagement moving again. So just think about those bottlenecks in your business. Where can you move the mirror so that way it’s not holding everybody else up.
Well, I hope you took something away from one of my biggest annoyances at Disney. It’s, it, it’s really interesting when you look at how Disney structures things and when you realize the intentionality behind it. Thank you for listening to this episode. We hope you enjoyed it.
And if you wanna join us to see the mirrors and the bathrooms in perso, come to Pixie Dust Live. It’s happening this October 15th, and you can find all the information about that at pixiedustinprofits.com/live-2023. We do go to the parks and have some fun, but the focus is on moving our businesses into 2024 with intention and a plan, a content strategy, a offer stack the ascension ladder, your product offerings. We talk about all of these things at Pixie Dust Live together. It’s a very intimate retreat. There are only five slots as of this recording, three of them are taken. So if you want one of those last two spots, go check out pixiedustandprofits.com/live-2023 and you can see the mirrors in the bathroom for yourself.
My personal favorite is Rapunzel’s Bathrooms and Magic Kingdom.
Those are, those are really nice. I also,
They’re probably the newest that’s,
I also like searching for the Pascals outside of that bathroom.
It’s just a fun vibe all around in that area.
Awesome. All right, well we’ll see you next week.
Jul 4, 2023
Hey everyone, welcome to this week’s snack sized summer series episode of Pixie Dust & Profits. I’m Nicole.
And I’m Yasmine,
And we are bringing you business bits all summer long. I hope that they’re something that gets you thinking about your business in new ways, whether you’re vacationing or taking a slow summer, or you’re right in the middle of it all and you’re prepping for Christmas in July. Because I know for a lot of our creators and makers, this is the time of year where they’re getting ready for their largest season, which is the end of the year. So thank you so much for joining us today. Our episode is really, really fun to us today. We, I mean, this was inspired by a visit probably a couple years ago to the D V C resorts, but it has nothing to do with D V C. I know we talk about D V C a lot, but it was just something that happened while we were there. We walked into our room and there was this, what, 200 plus page beautiful hard cover like glossy paged book,
Coffee table book.
Yeah, it’s like a coffee table book, just a conversation piece, right? And it’s called One Day At Disney. And then we start flipping through this book and we start seeing all of the different jobs that keep Disney running all these short little features. And we were like, not only is this beautiful and we’re, we’re loving the content inside and we’re engaging with it, but of course, both of us, our brains are running all around of like, this was genius that they did this.
And what’s really cool about one day at Disney is they didn’t just publish it in a book format, right? Nicole, if you are a Disney plus subscriber, you may have seen the documentary where they, again, dive into all the cool jobs that keep Disney running, but that’s not all, is it Nicole
N? No. So, I don’t know, maybe everyone has a different stream on their Disney Plus, but I tend to get all of the documentary type things because those are the things that I watch. I loved the Imagineering series and I hope they do another season of that. But this is kind of of the same vein. So they have one day at Disney, and if you go into Disney Plus and you search for that, you’re gonna see two options. They’re going to have about an hour long documentary that kind of goes through most of these roles that are featured in the book. But then they have one day at Disney shorts. And so just like we’re bringing you a snack size series for summer, they’ve kind of broken up this documentary in a different format for viewing. And there are 51 episodes in the one day at Disney shorts, and they’re each like seven to 10 minutes long.
So it looks like they tried to keep ’em around eight minutes so that way you could just kind of understand that particular role and move on to the next one and binge watch it or, you know, exit and do something else. But I, I think it’s a really ingenious thing, and that’s what Yaz and I really loved about this. Okay. The, the book is interesting in and of itself. We could probably do a different episode about every job that they’ve mentioned in there. You know, you have things like the animal keepers animal Kingdom to the casting directors for the show. Obviously Imagineering is a popular one. They even go beyond the parks and they start talking about like some of their news anchors on the different, a ABC shows people, the Broadway, some of the Broadway actors. I, I saw one that was like the research and development of making the, like the Spider-Man animatronic.
Good Morning America co-anchors. I mean, this goes all over the place. So what was really interesting about this is they had the book in the room. There’s so many levels of everything that’s interesting, but they had the book in the room, obviously to entice D v c members to purchase that book. I can’t remember off the top of my head. I feel like there was a card with it that kind of said like, take this home with you, you know, an advertisement to purchase your own copy. And so in and of itself, great marketing, put your own stuff in the room so people buy it and take it home. But when we go and look on Disney Plus and we see they have so many different forms of this same piece of content, they have the book, they have the long videography, and then they have the short form.
But I want ya to talk a little bit more about this cuz her and her husband do you kind of like editing for some clients over the years. And there’s, there’s an intentionality here from Disney that I think everyone needs to know when they wanna execute things like this. A lot of people talk about content repurposing. We’ve talked about content repurposing, and we think this kind of falls more into the content multiplication realm, which is something completely different. And if those terms mean nothing to you, let me just start with saying content repurposing is taking something that already exists and trying to reuse it in a different way. So that could be like, oh, I have this hour long video, let me try and cut it up into individual episodes. But Yasmine’s gonna tell you why that doesn’t always work.
Yeah. So my husband, Dylan, who also edits the podcast, Hey Dylan he is a video editor and a lot of our clients come to us for YouTube editing or podcast editing or other just editing projects. And after an episode is cut up, we always get the question, oh, hey, can we just like cut this into a bunch of different talks or like reels? And the short answer is, sure we can, but sometimes the content always doesn’t flow that way with content multiplication. What goes into your content planning is just that a plan. So when you are creating the script for like one day at Disney, for example, or for a podcast episode or a YouTube video that you’re doing, you’re intentionally planning little breaks into it and basically writing the script so it can be segmented. So even though you are maybe recording it in one go, it’s being set up to be cut into smaller pieces so you can repurpose it.
So when we look at what Disney did it with one day at Disney, they did obviously the photography, the principle of photography, the actual photography, the interviewing, and the script writing. They did this project in one go. They didn’t sit down to like interview that same animal keeper three different times, once for the book, once for, you know, the documentary and another time for the shorts. No, they did this all in one go. And then different team members took that content and worked on their respective project. So you had the book team taking the photos and the probably the video scripts, which were then transcribed into actual content for the book. Then you had the documentary team that, you know, had to cut out a lot of footage to fit all of those jobs into a one hour documentary. But then the shorts are probably extended.
I’m not probably there. The shorts are extended little highlights of each individual role. So they’re pulling that out. And what that might look like for you is if you’re doing a YouTube episode, teaching your audience about a specific topic, the actual footage that you might produce could be, you know, 30 to 40 minutes of content, let’s say. But then the video that goes up on YouTube might be a 15 minute cut of that, where it’s more you know, you’re teaching to specific topics. It’s a bit shorter. It’s made to be edited in a way that’s appealing for YouTube. That’s another topic that I can go into is editing for your platform. And I think I’ll touch upon it a bit after, but it’s edit for YouTube and then they might make longer cuts from that original recording to be put up on TikTok or reels or YouTube shorts or whatever short format video that you want to put out that goes into maybe a specific topic in a bit more depth but isn’t long enough to necessarily warrant its own YouTube video. And then you can take that content and probably transcribe it into a blog post and you can transcribe it into Instagram caption. So it’s taking that one piece of content, and I know this sounds like content repurposing, but what’s different is you’re going into it thinking of all the outputs and structuring the content in a way that will make it easier to produce those outputs versus trying to, you know, find the perfect spot to cut a video to create a TikTok and have it sort of start and end oddly.
Yeah, exactly. That’s what I was gonna say. This is more about the the process of how you’re going about your content than it is about how to repurpose the content. Because it’s not about repurposing, it is about, I love how you put that yasin where you start at the beginning with, okay, I want to make something about all of the jobs at Disney. What is the end goal? Like, what is the end output? Okay, we are going to have eight minute short videos that really go in depth for each job we’re interviewing. We’re gonna have an hour long documentary that kind of gives an overall view of many jobs, but maybe not all of them. Maybe they wanna highlight their, you know, most featured things or whatever might be, I’m sure there are more Marvel ones in the interview longer series because they wanna sell Marvel, or have you watched Marvel?
You know, there’s probably an intention behind which ones made those cuts. And then the book, right? They, they knew what the outputs were going to be when they started planning the process, and they probably had multiple video cameras and two different teams working on each side, like Yasmin said, because there is such a different way to go about this. They did this with Bob ER’s book too. Mm-Hmm. He’s actually one of the featured shorts where he’s, it says, you know, c e o. So it’s really cute that they did like the seven minute video, just like he was any other employee and put him in here. He isn’t even the first episode. It’s, you know, a couple episodes in. And that was also the masterclass that they recorded for masterclass, which was basically the story from the books mm-hmm.
And so they planned how many pieces and ways that this content was going to be used in advance. And that is the difference when you’re taking something and you’ve planned for it to be filmed in multiple ways. It might be something like those podcasts where we’re recording an episode and then you don’t see us when the episode ends. We’re like, let’s rerecord this part as a little advertisement to insert somewhere else, or let’s record a video to use in a different platform. It’s, we just talked about the topic so it’s fresh and top of mind, but when we’re thinking, okay, we’re gonna do a cut now for YouTube, we’re gonna talk a little bit differently than we do when it’s a, an audio podcast episode. And so there is a difference between doing that where you have an hour set aside for filming and you’re thinking about, you know, here’s the topic we’re talking about, but we need to do it in these different formats versus I’ve recorded it once and then it’s an afterthought.
That’s what usually happens with content repurposing. And that doesn’t mean it’s bad, especially if it’s good content, but content repurposing makes it, you can just tell, you can tell when you’re on TikTok or you’re u on YouTube or you’re scrolling through Instagram reels. You can just tell this what’s not meant to be a reel. This is like, someone recorded this on TikTok and put it over here. It doesn’t work. Even though TikTok and reels might feel similar on the surface, you can tell when you’re watching it. It doesn’t feel organic, it doesn’t feel natural, and therefore the engagement is low and the algorithm isn’t gonna put it in front of people. So I hope you enjoyed this snack size summer series episode. It’s really about multiplying your content, thinking ahead about how you’re gonna use it before you film it. And maybe even after you film it, if after you film something and you’re like, oh, that was great, or after you wrote something that was great, stay in that mindset and, and go the extra five minutes to go do it for another platform.
You know, I’m gonna add in one little tip there. We did this with one of our clients where originally we were planning on doing YouTube episodes for her podcast as well. And the idea was that we weren’t just gonna put up the podcast recording on YouTube, we were going to take that script and then we had sectioned out specific p parts to then use that footage for the YouTube video. So it was a little bit more succinct and set up for YouTube. But we found that process didn’t work for the client in the end in terms of how she wanted to, you know, create content. It didn’t feel that organic for her, which was fine. You sometimes have to tweak things. But then what we ended up doing was when we found that there were specific talking points that she had where she got really excited rather than use that, you know, video recording of her recording the podcast where, you know, she would be looking at her notes and might not be making eye contact with the camera.
We had her take those points and literally after she was done recording for five minutes, she would just talk straight to camera and sort of repeat that. But she’s re basically using that same content but just shooting the footage in a slightly different way. So it’s succinct and it’s basically made for a short YouTube clip, a YouTube short, or for us to put on TikTok and we were able to take that content and multiply it in many ways. And it wasn’t that much effort. It was literally, like Nicole said, an extra five minutes for her.
Yeah. When, when it’s top of mind and you just talked about it like it’s it’s still in your head. Exactly. It’s not like you have to reset up your room or get your production ready to go again. It definitely makes things so much easier. And sometimes it’s helpful to just like look at how they record movies, right? Mm-Hmm, you know, they, every single second of a movie is recorded over and over and over again for the expression and for the, and then we’re not saying you need to curate your content that hard, but just think about how, like, okay, if I’m, if I’m talking to someone on YouTube, what are the videos I like to watch on YouTube and how do they act while they’re on that? No one would really love the videos from these audio recordings because we’re just in sweats and just chatting. Maybe sometimes we,
We get excited, looks on our faces, which I don’t know, might not be the most video friendly. Sometimes, I get crazy eyes when I get excited. Just warning everyone,
We will, we will, we have plans. We’re planning, we’re we notice we’re on episode 82, you know, episode a hundred is coming. We, we we’re thinking of things for that. So if there’s something you wanna see, some topic you’d love to hear about, let us know. We have a few more snack series coming out this summer. And we’re, we’re treking along to that hundredth episode really soon. But we’ll see you for our next episode next week.
See real soon. Bye
Jun 27, 2023
Hey everyone, welcome to the Pixie Dust & Profits podcast. I’m Nicole.
And I’m Yasmine.
And this is our summer snack size series, snack size summer series. I don’t remember,
I think’s snack size, summer series, snack
Size summer series. We’re doing short and sweet episodes all summer long just to get you thinking about your business at a time where we tend to focus on other people and let our business go by the wayside because we are enjoying the beach or family vacations or just, you know, soaking up some sunshine and getting other things done. So today’s episode is a topic that we talk about very often. I wanna preface this episode with, I recently took a vacation to Disney, of course, big surprise. But this time it was a much longer trip than we usually take, and we added on a surprise day at Universal. My kiddo and I have been reading the Harry Potter books, and so we really just wanted to explore the two Harry Potter areas at Universal. And we’re just gonna talk about the lifetime value of a customer in terms of universal versus Disney. So Yasmine, I don’t know if you’ve been to Universal, but I know you’ve kind of, we’ve talked about this a lot and you’ve kind of priced it out and
All of that. Not in Florida, but quite often in California.
Yeah, so I, the, I think like the baseline that we should talk about is like, they have two very distinct models. We talk a lot about Disney’s Mo model, where basically the longer you stay the quote cheaper it gets because they want you to have like seven day tickets, right? You know, it’s, what does a one day ticket cost these days? $120. It varies by date, it varies by park. It’s kind of like, it’s, it’s a little overwhelming if you haven’t been to Disney before, quite honestly. So you, you pay like $120 for one day, two days is, you know, $215. You save three bucks and then you go all the way up. And so you probably cap out somewhere around $400 for a seven day. And I’m just quoting these off the top of my head. I’m not looking at anything. I’m just assuming that, because usually when we do the math, when you get an annual pass, it, it works out if you go for 10 days, two trips of five days, 10 days total, something like that.
And so Disney kind of has this model of stay longer, play longer, we have four parks, you know, explore every nook and cranny of all of them. And you know, in the last episode we talked about the Reedy Creek District. And visually, when you’re at Walt Disney World, it does not look like the rest of Florida. It, you are in a bubble. And this is why we missed the Magical Express, because the Magical Express would take you from the airport to the bubble and you never had to leave it. Lately on my trips, I have been renting a car now and so I, I see the outside of the bubble more and more and it’s, it’s really funny, like once you cross a line, it’s suddenly you’re in a completely different place. So Disney really wants you in that bubble and they price accordingly. Mm-Hmm.
So with Universal, they do things a little bit differently. Now, universal doesn’t really have the sort of long stay appeal that the Disney like bubble does, cuz like Nicole said, you can go to the parks, but there’s just so much to do on Disney property. We once made a day out of like literally resort hopping on the monorail. We, we just ho visited every resort in the monorail. We had some food here, we shopped. Like, there’s just so much to do. Shout
Out to the Grand Floridian Cafe. It has my favorite meal there. The heirloom apple salad, my favorite, if I have any opportunity to go there, I will.
It’s so good. But universal, I mean they have a lot of parks in Florida and I personally haven’t been you know, they’ve built out like their Harry Potter lands, they have some like water parks and stuff, but you typically don’t stay there for a week. At least not anyone I know does. Universal is usually like a one to like two day sort of visit and trip. You hit up like the, the areas and the lands that like appeal to you and it’s like an add-on to a Disney trip if that. So they basically priced to maximize their revenue from these short stay. So things are a lot more expensive.
Yeah, we definitely experienced that. So they do things like in order to take the Hogwarts Express train from Hogsmeade to Diagon Alley, which are two Harry Potter areas in different parks, you need to have a one day park to park or park hopper if you know Disney language pass. And so that costs more. You can’t just have a pass to one park. If you want to take that train, like you can, you know, see the train with your eyes, maybe if you wait in line and then not go on it, actually you can’t. They scan your band even to get in line for the train. And so they, they price accordingly. So your tickets are 200, $220 to be able to do, you know what is probably the biggest draw to the park is the Harry Potter right now. They know that you’re only there for a day or two In our situation, my child gets very motion sick and a lot of the rides at Universal, even the shows at Universal are 3D motion.
They’re just, they’re meant for older kids. I think you know, that teenager world because that’s different than Disney. So they kind of wanna hit that market, which is totally understandable, but there’s a lot for someone who doesn’t even really get motion sick, there’s a lot of rides that you get motion sick on. So we can’t really do much at these parks. We, we are just going to experience all of the Harry Potter that we can going into shops, you know, trying the butter beer, getting a wand, walking around doing some magic, and so they really get their money’s worth. The other thing that Universal does, knowing that you are probably only gonna be there for a day or two, so they have three signature premium resorts and if you stay at one of those resorts, you get what’s called an express pass. And that Express Pass lets you, for as many times as you want, go into the express line for a Ride Disney.
If you have been to Disney and you’ve heard of Genie Plus or the old Fast Pass system, usually you can only go on a ride once with that. So if you wanted to get Genie Plus, you cannot keep going on the same ride over and over, you can only go on once it’s one time Use Universal let’s you go on as many times as you want. And so you want to stay at one of those premium resorts so that way you get this like front of the line access. But those resorts come with a premium price tag, like $400 is probably the cheapest one at the cheapest time of year. You can buy that pass if you don’t stay at the resort. But they’re typically 800 plus dollars per person in your party. Yeah
$205 if you were to go like this week. So if, if I could just like pop in with some numbers while Nicole was explaining everything, I’m like, okay, let’s just see how much this would cost. So right now they have if you buy two park day, two day tickets, so like you can park hop basically for two days, you can get three days for free. So like that seems like a good deal. So I add that on. This is for a family of two with one kid. Then if you wanna add on the Universal Express unlimited pass, that’s like $1,800 for like five days for a family of three.
And the thing that you don’t know if you don’t go to Universal often, and we experience because we did stay one night at one of the more premium hotels because I needed to make sure my kid could do all the Harry Potter stuff because we only had one day, well we only had one park day, we were not going for longer than that. A lot of their lines have a single rider line, which was actually faster than the unlimited pass line. And we are a family of three with a child who does not ride some of those more intense things. And so for us, we’re always gonna be in a single rider line. We don’t have someone else to watch our kid for us while we’re there. And so that express pass maybe not worth it as much as maybe for some other families, but I definitely, what we’re getting at here is Disney prices for you to stay a long time because Disney knows the longer you’re staying there, they can keep bringing your, your park tickets down.
They’re stuffed to experience every day. You could plan seven days at four different parks and water parks, all of those things you’re spending money on food, souvenirs, snacks, all of those things during that entire stay. Universal knows even if you get the two day pass at upgrades for three more days, you probably two days is enough to get everything done in all those parks multiple times over. And so they know people aren’t even looking to stay for five days, so they’re just gonna make that deal look sweet by saying you got three days free, you don’t need them. And so they’re pricing everything as if you were staying there for five days, but you’re only staying for two. So your hotels are expensive. Even things like trying to get a bottle of water while we were there felt so pricey. It was hot one day and this was the very end of our trip.
So we didn’t have any like groceries left over any, you know, water bottles. And it felt like we were being overcharged for every little thing that we ate or drank. So it wasn’t the best feeling. So when we cut down to it, we’re talking about this lifetime value of a customer. Are you going for someone or, or are your customers, is your ideal client someone who’s like spending a long time working with you or are they kind of, we’re just doing this one task together and we’re moving on. And that’s what you need to think about while you’re pricing your services. You know, if I’m helping someone as a consultant and I’m not doing the work, but they need me, they need to talk to me right now, they have all these ideas in their head, they need to clear it out.
I’m not doing the work so I can’t necessarily control the results and so I need to price accordingly. I have clients who are my monthly retainer clients and they come first in priority. Their projects come first. If someone comes in and they want just one day with me, there’s gonna be a little bit more of a premium because I have to shift around other projects. Sometimes I have to work late or on weekends to account for, you know, squeezing someone in. And so they’re getting that universal pricing versus the Disney like, Hey, slow and steady, we’re gonna get everything done. We’re we’ll work together over time. We know we have the time to get this done.
Yeah, like my retainer rate versus my regular rate is different and there’s a bit more of a discount with ongoing retainer clients because it also on my end guarantees like, you know, I I say guarantee, but like I have an agreement with my clients, I’m gonna be working with them month over month for in years in some cases, right? So it makes sense to give them a bit of that like deal because the lifetime value of that customer is infinitely more than, you know, someone who will come in for like a short project or shorter engagement. And again, things aren’t price learning
Curve with a short project, right? That’s when you’re coming in and you dunno their systems and you’ve gotta, you’re, you’re spending an intense amount of thinking time understanding everything that’s happening
And that gets priced into the package for like a shorter engagement because you can’t just like dive into someone’s business not knowing anything and expect to have like, you know, reasonable results. So all of that might make, you know, a one month engagement seem more expensive than what a client who might get slightly more hours pays for one month of a retainer. But that with that client, like I’ve been working with them for like four or five years now, so I literally know their business like the back of my hand and the constant updates and you know, meetings that we have keeps me in the loop so I’m able to accomplish more in a shorter period of time simply because of that background knowledge. But with short-term engagement, you have to learn all that stuff in order to do the work, to have results.
And just to say like one is not necessarily better than the other, they’re just d different. Oh no. And so you need to price differently. So for everyone out there who is, you know, looking to do v i p days or anything like that, you’re gonna probably price those higher than if someone were a continual client. And sometimes one of the things that I see that trips people up in our industry often is they are trying to charge v i p day rates to a retainer client. Mm-Hmm. and re and no one wants to book. And well, because an ongoing cost is so much more, at some point it becomes do I hire an employee instead that might actually be cheaper. And so you need to like think about some of these things. The reason why a day rate can garner so much more is because the client is in a pressure cooker, right?
They have a project they need to get done, they wanna get it done by a certain date, or they don’t have a skillset that you do have and they need it right away. And that’s what a V I P today is great for and that’s why a garners a premium. You have a steep learning curve and you need to do it quickly and you need to do it well for them to pass on good feedback about you. But retainer is completely different. Like Yasmine said, you can do things more efficiently because you know the brand so well because you’ve been working with them for so long. And so my retainer clients I think the last time I raised my rates was probably like two Januarys ago. And I know that inflation is crazy and I could ask for a raise in rates, but there’s also, there’s a back and forth relationship there.
And so just think about that lifetime value of a customer when you’re considering the types of products your customers are buying from you and what their experience with you is like. There’s nothing wrong with preferring Universal’s approach over Disney’s approach. They’re just different. And clients might have different expectations. Me being a very big Disney person, knowing that system in and out, I knew Universal was a luxury purchase that we were making for a very specific reason. And I still left feeling like gutted like, oh, that was so much for one day. We had fun, we have great pictures, but we probably will not be doing that again. It’s not a routine until he wants to ride roller coasters at like 17.
Yeah, absolutely. What are other ways that you are incorporating lifetime value in your business? We’d love to hear, let us know by commenting on Instagram. We’re at Pixie Dust & Profits
Now. If you wanna have more conversations like these with us and spend some intentional time thinking about the products and services that you sell, who your target market is and how to price everything that you have going on, then you might wanna consider joining us at Pixie Dusts live. It’s happening this October. pixiedustandprofits.com/live at this event. We do a yearly planning session. We get into the weeds with what your product is, with what your business is. This is a very exclusive event. We only have five seats. It is Yasmine and I as coaches, and we also have another coach who comes along with us who talks about content, content strategy, developing that runway for your launches that you’ll have coming. And this is an event where you can get all of this business planning done and also get to have some fun at Disney World. So again, we have five spots for that. We only have two available as of this recording. So if you’re interested in that, pixiedustprofits.com/live and we hope to see you there.
Thanks for joining us again, and we’ll see you real soon. Bye.
Jun 20, 2023
Hello and welcome back to Pixie Dust & Profits. I’m Yasmine.
And I’m Nicole.
And we’re back with the second episode of our snack-size summer series. Again, we know in the summer you are busy. We’re busy, so we’re keeping all of our episodes short and sweet. And this week maybe the topic that we’re talking about isn’t so sweet. But if you have been keeping up with any of the news of what’s happening in Florida, I am sure you have heard about the battle going on between Florida’s governor, DeSantis and Disney. Before we get into the details, let’s talk about how it started. All of this discord had stemmed when Disney had spoken out against the don’t say gay bill that Florida enacted. Essentially, it does not allow any school children to say the word gay or talk about homosexuality in any capacity. And Disney, if you’ve been keeping up with their content, especially I would say over the past couple years, has really been trying to be more inclusive about the different voices and backgrounds in the characters and actors that they feature in their shows. And
All of their employees, I mean, they’re the largest employer in Florida.
Yeah. And they’re, they’re really trying to be inclusive and create content that reflects the modern day world. Now, depending on where you live, that might not necessarily reflect your exact reality, but doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist. And I think Disney’s doing a really great job of elevating different voices that historically we didn’t really see represented well in media. And also like in companies, the fact that they’re, like Nicole said, hiring people of all different backgrounds, beliefs, sexualities, I think is so, and
This also isn’t very new either. Bob Iger was the CEO for over 20 years. We have obviously recommended his book numerous times, but if you’ve read it, there’s a lot of information in there about how the core to Disney is storytelling and relatability to those stories. And so you have to be telling the stories of the people who will be consuming them in order to stay relevant and innovative and expand into the future. So none of this is a surprise or slow going in any way. Disney’s been working toward this for very many years.
Absolutely. So the issue that we’re having is that as a retaliatory measure, and we know it’s retaliation, governor DeSantis has threatened to remove Disney’s special district status. So Disney operates Reedy Creek, which is a special district in which they are responsible for paying for all of the municipal infrastructure and planning. This was done when Disney was first built many, many years ago in order to basically expedite a lot of like the building processes when they want to build new rides and resorts and facilities but also to not put the weight of managing Disney’s infrastructure mm-hmm. in terms of like roads, utilities, the fire, et cetera, department fire departments Yeah. On the neighboring residence and taxpayers. So Disney pays for all of that. And we know this is retaliatory because there are 1,800 special districts in Florida alone, and Governor DeSantis is trying his darnedest to dismantle Reedy Creek. So I won’t get too much into the details of like what has happened, but essentially he’s trying to dismantle it, have a board take control over what happens that’s not including anyone from Disney and push the cost of managing the district back onto the taxpayers of Osceola County,
Who are overwhelmingly have a party that is not as of a zone. Yes. and so, you know, talking about this, there’s active litigation about this. So you will probably be seeing headlines by the time this comes out. They’ll probably be new news about the whole situation. But essentially Disney is suing the state saying that all of these practices of trying to essentially take over their business operations and how they run their business is retaliation against something that they did, you know, a year and a half, two years ago. And so for purposes of this episode, you know, whatever side of whatever you are on, I think everyone knows what side Yasmine and I are on. But at the very base of this, regardless of all of the politics surrounding it, we just wanna say like, it’s a fundamental right. In our country, Yasmine is Canadian, but it’s, it’s a right to free speech. Right. And that extends to businesses and has for a very long time. Now, there’s a lot of pros and cons to the fact that businesses, you know, have a voice and can exercise free speech and lobby and all of those things. We’re not gonna get into that. But at the bottom of it, we’re talking about how free speech extends to our businesses too.
Yes. And as business owners, sometimes it could be scary to voice our opinions and views because we don’t want to, you know, offend any customers that we have, especially if we serve, you know, people across all beliefs, you know? But I also think that consumers today are leaning more and more towards supporting businesses that share their views and values and, you know,
Don’t prop up a system that has harmed many Yeah. And continues to harm many. Yeah. I, I think people are just looking more and more as the generations are getting younger, we’re so plugged in to the internet mm-hmm. that it’s not even the internet, it’s just how we live our lives now. And we’re kind of, of the generation, we’re that sandwich generation where we remember the days before dial up, but mm-hmm. , we, so we still see Google as a tool. And I think like when you start getting younger than we are, it’s not a tool, it’s just everyday life. And so your brands, like the shirt you’re wearing, the shoes you’re wearing, they represent so much more because everyone has a personal brand now, right? Like even if I, you’re not out there taking an Instagram photo every day and showing your outfit of the day, it’s almost as if everyone has a personal brand and you don’t want to be walking outside wearing something that is just doesn’t feel good morally or ethically.
And so I think this is so much more ingrained and we’re just continuing, that’s going to keep going on and getting deeper. I know the word parasocial gets thrown out all the time. And so like, we’re kind of getting into that like, relationship with our brands where they’re part of our identity and personality in a way that I don’t think was in the past. In the past. It was like, you watch a Coca-Cola commercial on tv and that’s what everyone is drinking because that’s the only commercial on tv. And now there’s so many more nuances, there’s personal choice. And so yeah, you’re, you’re a brand, you’re a walking brand and you want to feel aligned with the things that are going on. And so free speech is something businesses are allowed to do. Whether that’s saying, you know, we’re, we’re all about the environment. Everything that we make is, you know, recyclable in some way. We’ve thought about the entire production process from cradle to grave. Like that’s free speech. You’re allowed to say. Like that’s what your brand’s platform is all about.
And you know, there could be consequences to having specific values and belief systems, but you know, consumers also have a right to vote with their dollar. And at the end of the day, I feel like, you know, you wanna attract customers and people who also align with your belief system. Like you want someone who cares about like the environment. If you’re an eco-friendly brand, you want to attract customers who care about inclusivity. If you’re Disney, you know, we both hold like Disney Real estate, I’m using air quotes, you can’t see that because I’m obviously talking. But we both are D V C owners and I feel like personally Disney’s stance on this issue could have affected whether I continue to remain a D V C member or sold my D V C properties because I care about where my money goes and what it ultimately supports. At the end of the day,
I, you know, taking off the rose colored glasses, we all know that Disney is putting money behind whichever candidates are going we’ll support their interests, giving them the most return on investment. Mm-Hmm. , we, we know that and we know that there’s no perfectly aligned company or anything like that. But just thinking about those things beyond, I enjoy going to Disney World, it’s a lot of fun. Who do they stand for? What are they doing? You know, definitely things they’re benefiting from in the system, but who are they harming? And let’s keep exploring that. You know, a lot of it stuff came out during the pandemic about how workers were treated and you know, the things they’re doing to get things back on track and take better care of their employees. And so there’s also been on their news where they’ve decided not to bring a whole campus to Florida that they were originally planning to relocate.
I think it was imagineers from California to Florida. And that’s gonna bring a whole bunch of business to Florida to a different area, not necessarily the Walt Disney World campus. And they’ve canceled that project. And so when you think about the cost of free speech in this case, not only is the state losing money by not moving all these jobs and this opportunity over, it’s just this, this back and forth of you do this, we’ll do that, you do this, we’ll do that. And who really loses there? So just think about that in terms of your business. And you have the right to free speech. You also have the right to the consequences of that free speech. But we just think it’s really important to remind everyone that you can say what you need to say as a business owner. And that might have consequences, but you shouldn’t be retaliated against for it.
Especially not by the government.
Twitter bots are another story entirely.
All right. Well, we’d love to know what you think about this, if you wanna talk about it at all. No pressure. You know where to find us. We are on Instagram at pixiedustandprofits,
And you can also email us at email@example.com. We love hearing from you. If you have ideas for some of our Summer Snack series episodes, we would love to hear them. We’ll see you real soon.
Jun 13, 2023
Hi everyone. Welcome back to the Pixie Dust & Profits podcast. I’m Nicole. And
And we’re doing a short and sweet summer series for you where we are just kind of getting into like 10 minute episodes, bite snack sized episodes for you to be thinking Disney and your business. We know that the summer is the time of year where you kind of, I don’t wanna say drop off in your business, but you kind of go in and enjoy the outside, especially for people like Yasmine and I who live in the north and we don’t get a lot of warm weather. We get outside, so usually around the summertime we’re just working on the client projects we need to do and probably not focusing on our own businesses quite as much as we used to in the fall and in the winter. So we thought snack size summer series. Here we go. So today’s episode, speaking of snack size, is all about the Disney Dining Plan. We have talked about this a few times in our episodes, and the big news right now is that it’s returning, it’s coming back to Disney World, starting in January. You can add the dining plan back to your reservations. Yasmin, have you ever used the Dining plan? Have, have you added that to your trip at all, ever?
I have not. And the primary reason for me personally, for not adding it is it would’ve ended up being too much food for how, like I like to eat and snack at Disney.
That’s such a good point. I think the last time I did the Disney Dining Plan, was it, it had to be at least 12, 13 years ago, like, I think it was before I met my husband because I remember this from trips with my mom and my brother, where the Disney Dining Plan used to include an appetizer, your meal and a dessert, which was a, an amazing value. They’re also the way the dining plan works is you tend to get credits. There’s different levels of the plan, and so you get credits for snacks, which is, you know, a water bottle or a Mickey bar, and you get credits for a quick service restaurant, which is kind of that like grab and go burger, chicken fingers and fries, and you get credits for table service, which is where you sit down, you have a, a waitress or a waiter who comes and, you know, does your meal or the buffets, especially the character dining.
So way, way, way, way back when the dining plan first came out, everything was kind of like one credit except for I think Cinderella’s table, where it was like you needed two credits for a table service to, to equal out how expensive that restaurant is. And so slowly over time, some more restaurants started getting added to the list where it costs two table credits instead of one. And so there’s, there’s a lot of ups and downs with the dining plan and you know, we’re not a travel blog here, but suffice to say it’s a lot of food, it’s a lot of scheduling time to go eat. So those are the downsides, but there’s also some bonuses here and that’s what we really wanna talk about when it comes to your business.
So one of the bonuses of the dining plan is it essentially allows you to prepay for, I would say all, or almost all of the food and like meal experiences you wanna have at Disney. So you can add a package depending on how much you wanna get. So they usually have the quick service dining plan, which has like one quick one or two quick service meals a day, and then I think two snacks a day that you can eat. Then they have the like medium level dining plan and I just wanna carry that. This might change with what’s happening in January, but this is how it traditionally worked, which had one table service credit, one quick service credit, and two snacks per day of your trip. And then they had like the Deluxe dining plan, which had basically three table service credits per day and two snacks.
So that basically means like you would be sitting down to have a sit down breakfast for breakfast, lunch and dinner plus two snacks a day. Or if you wanna go to a lot of those like signature experience restaurants like Cinderella’s Castle, I think beer Guest is now a signature experience that would take up two of those credits. I could be wrong, I could be wrong. But one thing that I hear a lot of people being excited about the dining plan is that it’s like one and done. Like you pay for it upfront when you’re planning your vacation and then you don’t really have to worry about budgeting for food or keeping track of your food expenses. Now I will say there’s still an additional expense above the Disney Dining Plan, which is gratuity. You still, you know, are expected to tip your waiters, but beyond that, everything is pretty much covered. And only certain plans include alcoholic beverages, not all of them. So that’s,
Yeah. And so the interesting thing about these plans, I mean we’ve, there’s a lot going on with them, right? So you talked about there’s the three levels. Again, we don’t know if this is what it’s going to look like in January, but I imagine the way that Disney markets everything where even annual passes, there’s four tiers, right? They, they wanna shuffle people probably closest to the middle tier mm-hmm. . So that there’s three, one is kind of like the, the quick service. Like, you know, that you’re just getting chicken fingers and fries. I think a lot of families probably get this one. It’s also really nice, you know, if you don’t want to have the full dining plan experience, you can still do table service restaurants. It doesn’t prevent you from doing that. You’re just paying out of pocket. Mm-Hmm. . But the quick service plan at least covers your basic, like, I’m getting lunch and a snack every day and those are paid for.
So that way, you know, it kind of loosens up the control of every time your kid is asking, can I have that? Can I have that, can I have that? And you can say, well, we all got two treats today and you spent yours. It kind of takes some of that off of parent’s shoulders. It also kind of moderates yourself if you’re just going with Disney adults. So that’s like the lower plan. And then the middle is the one table. So when we’re talking about our business stuff, we’re talking about convenience here and we’re also talking about upselling a little bit into more than someone probably needs. And, but still giving them that choice so that way they feel like they’re getting exactly what they need. Now I have actually sat down at spreadsheets and tried to say, we’re gonna eat here. I’m gonna eat this. I’m, I’m usually the person who gets like the chicken dish. I don’t get like a huge steak or anything like that, especially at Disney. I’m always so hot. I can’t eat a really big hardy meal. I’m kind of more of a snacker throughout the day. And so
Even then, like yeah, if I could jump in, like I remember every time we would go to Disney I would come like with like, I wanna try this, I wanna try this, I wanna try this. I barely had room or the ability to try half the snacks on my list unless I was like gonna take a bite and throw it out. Which is wasteful in my opinion. So I never get through my entire snack list. So even with like, you know, having the option of like two snacks a day, it’s, it’s a lot of of food.
Yeah. And so you’re giving people that like option or appearance of flexibility while also kind of upselling them into probably more expensive option than if they had just paid out of pocket for the experience. Mm-Hmm. . And so they really try to market this months before the trip. Like this isn’t something you add on at the last minute. They might mention it in emails along with everything else, but you know, if I were looking at Disney’s marketing stack, it would be, you booked a trip. Okay, let’s get you locked into this dining plan. And before you had to make your dining reservation six months before your trip mm-hmm. . So they kind of coincided with when it, they marketed it, but now they’ve made so many changes that you actually can cancel your reservation for a restaurant, I think like two hours before now, which opens up a lot of reservations for people who are on site.
And so it’s actually really nice. You don’t have to necessarily plan your restaurant six months in advance. Problem with that, with the dining plan though, is that kind of takes away the sense of urgency that people needed to buy it or add it onto their trip. So I’m really curious to see how that falls out in January. But I still think this is something they’re going to market like toward the beginning of the relationship with your vacation. Right? This is something that like, oh, add this on for convenience cuz as you get closer to your trip, they’re gonna start pushing Genie Plus at you mm-hmm. because that’s much more urgent. You’re thinking about the rides you wanna go on and the things that you wanna experience. So yeah, when you’re a business owner and you’re thinking about the marketing of, especially if you have some sort of program group membership coaching, relationship consulting, you can do this to another extent in, in your product based businesses where you have different tiers or levels of things, you know I see this a lot, especially with like subscription boxes where it’s like you can have, you know, you get one small item and one large item every month, or you can add in you know, a special experience or something.
So when you’re thinking about this, like think about the long-term plan of the marketing, right? When, what are they buying from you? What can you convince them on early on? And then what can you add on a little bit later? And so the dining plan is, in my opinion, I would never tell people who are on a budget on their Disney trip to, to get that. But I have family members who are much more anxious in how they VA vacation. And so when they’re talking to me about going to Disney, I tell them, you know, this is probably more than it would be if it was out of your pocket, but you don’t really have to think about these things when you’re filling out the check at the end of the day. And if you like to have everything paid off ahead of time, you really should consider getting the dining plan. And so that’s how we can talk about it with our customers.
Yeah. And like other ways that you can incorporate this sort of like, mentality into your businesses. Again, thinking about that convenience. So Nicole covered off the idea of like subscription boxes especially if you’re a product-based business. Well, if you’re a service-based business, what are other ways that you can again, continue to bring in revenue while decreasing that sort of mental load on your customer while doing automated invoices every month? So, you know, a lot of businesses often go through a task of like, you know, sending their invoices to their clients every month and then their clients have to, you know, go pay them every month. And, you know, that’s great and business as usual, but if you have sort of a reoccurring fee, like a retainer fee or a service fee that you’re charging your clients every month, get them on automatic payments, it automatically bills your credit card on the date that you designate and neither you, or they have to worry about sending out the invoices on time or making sure that they pay on time. It’s just one thing that they don’t have to think about that makes it easier to work with you.
Yeah, and I, I think when we start thinking about some other ways to implement this, it’s just convenience is a cost in and of itself. And I think that some people struggle, especially women, we struggle in our businesses to value our time accordingly. Mm-Hmm. . And so if you’re looking at something and you’re saying, oh, this will be a hundred dollars, but you’re really spending hours making it happen. So for example, if you’re just doing a, a, a 30 minute consultation session, whatever it may be, it could be about like the color seasons, your color palette, or it can be, you know, a marketing plan, whatever that 30 minute session is, we often see people who are like, oh, here’s, you know, $50 for half an hour of my time, and they completely forget about the fact that they have to go back and forth and do the scheduling with the person to even get them on the call.
You have to do the marketing to get people to want to book a call. And then after they have a call with them, they have to send them their notes about what we talked about and what your next steps are. And that might not be something you say is included, but you should still be doing because then that person’s gonna leave, you know, remembering who you are. You can’t just like leave the call to drop off. You want them to book another call, right? And so some of these things you have to think about the convenience for your customer, but also the experience that they’re expecting. So we would love to hear from you. Have you ever used the dining plan? Do you have a dining plan in your business? How do you give that value and give that higher level of service and roll it into your fees? Like, what is, what is your package look like?
So you can let us know on Instagram, we’re at pixiedustandprofits. Or you know what, send us an email if you feel up to it. We love hearing from you. You can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We’ll see you real soon. Our summer series happens every two weeks. So tune in for our next episode.
Feb 21, 2023
Did you know that Disney has a whole business teaching you about the business of Disney and also taking you behind the scenes? Welcome to Pixie Dust & Profits. I’m Yasmine.
And I’m Nicole.
And today we’re gonna be talking a little bit about behind the scenes at Disney and how you can pull back the curtain and see all of the magic. And also talk about another project that we do behind the scenes of this podcast called Pixie Dust and Profits Live.
Yeah. So Disney Institute is a different arm of the Disney business and talk about using your content to the fullest, right? We, we’ve talked about this a little bit here and there throughout the podcast, but if you haven’t heard about it before, essentially Disney has a whole stream of leadership lessons, conferences, events that executives and SVPs at different corporate companies usually can go and attend and learn the Disney Way, right? How they treat employees, how they approach operations how they keep the magic happening during the pandemic. They actually took a lot of these lessons online so you can purchase them virtually to attend. It’s on our bucket list to do. We haven’t gotten there yet, but I did actually a few years ago take a tour. It’s called the Backstage Magic Tour. They have not yet brought that back after C O V I D, but it was fascinating.
I’ve shared many of the stories on this podcast, but we got to go see the costuming department, the workhouse, which is the warehouse where they do all of the mechanics and, you know, just the machine operations and cleaning all of the rides and repainting the carousel horses and everything you could think about to maintain all of the rides that Disney has. So they had that. We also saw, saw the laundry operations, which I’ve talked about many times cause it was fascinating to me. But, you know, it’s really cool that they’re able to take this entertainment business and have a completely separate arm of it to teach people how to run businesses and how to run them well. And it was really interesting because there’s clearly different audiences, right? You have Disney people who are going on their Disney vacation, they’re taking their family, they’re having a good time.
Well, when I went on the tour, it was full of engineers and just marketing people and people who were just really interested in how things work. So it’s a lot of fun to do and it was really fun to see how Disney actually does things because this was, I think, even before this podcast started we had the idea to do the podcast and that just kind of spurred it even further of this is actually really cool stuff and people probably would be entertained by this. So yeah, we wanna peel back the layers a little bit on one of our own processes or programs that we have here called Pixie Dust Live. If you haven’t heard of it, it is an in-person retreat that happens at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida. And this will be our, our third round. This is our third year of doing this.
The first round kind of got postponed by the pandemic, but we still ended up holding it when, once it got safer to do so. And so this will be our third year running it. It happens in October every year. And it’s just a really awesome way to get together with other female entrepreneurs who run their own businesses and exchange ideas, get feedback, and also have some fun because it’s really important to separate from the four walls of your office or that surroundings you usually find yourself in and have some fun in order to spur some more creativity and, you know, look at the next phase of your business or how can you change things up in your business. So we love Pixie Dust Live and you have questions. So we thought we’d answer them.
So the first question that we received is, is pixie dust live like the podcast? And I would love to say that I and Nicole and I are gonna walk you through Magic Kingdom and, you know, break down all of the things that happen behind the scenes and relate it to your business, but it’s a little bit more focused on your business individually. And we just incorporate a bit of Disney fun. We truly feel that big ideas and creativity happens when you can relax. And as small business owners, we have a really tough time taking breaks from our business to think about that bigger picture, to think about the strategy when you’re so into the day-to-day. So while it doesn’t quite operate like a pixie Dustin Profits podcast episode, you do get a little bit of that Disney magic while talking about your business. So why don’t we go through what each day looks like, Nicole?
Yeah, yeah. So the event is Sunday to Thursday. Everyone travels their own way. We have people who drive by car, some fly and you will have the opportunity to meet and connect with people before the event. We have a call with everyone. We have like a little community so we can get excited together and share introductions and things like that. So some people actually carpool together from the airport. And then we get there Sunday and it’s really low key. We don’t really start until the evening when our rooms are available. We say our hellos and then we go out for dinner and just, you know, break ice. Ask everyone, you know, what’s something you’re excited about in your business? What’s, you know, why, why did you decide to come here? What are you hoping to get out of the week?
And, and we have a really good dinner that first night. And then the next day Monday is like our, our big masterminding day. And this is where everyone takes a turn to talk about, you know, what is going on in their business, something that they’re struggling with or an opportunity. They think they have a new product they wanna create and they can kind of share that whole ecosystem. Like the floor is theirs. They can get feedback from the other women in the room if they’re open to that. But also feedback from us as the coaches. And then later in the day we will break out into one-on-one sessions and small groups of like two, two people to one coach. And then we’ll also have some one-on-one sessions. So we actually have three coaches coming. The first year was me and Yasmin, and last year we trialed bringing in another coach was, which is Latasha Doyle of uncanny content.
And it was so amazing we asked her back this year. So basically we have Yasmin who Ty typically helps who, who’d have like products or physical product operations, e-commerce shops. I help people with like the employee contractor operations side of things, some marketing and strategy as well, mostly service pace service-based businesses. And then Latasha is a content strategist who runs an agency. And so she really helps people connect what is the value that you’re creating for people and how do you need to talk to and market your message about these products that you have? Like, what’s that theme that you need to be making sure you connect with your audience on and how can you engage them through your content to eventually get to the sale? So it’s a really robust team that you’ve got at your fingertips for a few days. And yes, we have the one-on-one sessions there.
We also have one-on-one sessions after the event. So, you know, once you, once you’re home and things have kind of settled in a little bit and you have more questions, don’t worry, we’re there for you still. But that’s not the only time you get to talk to people, you know, at, at different dinners. You’ll sit next to somebody else and you’ll be able to pick their brain about something. And so it’s really four days of access to a lot of really great minds in the industry. So that’s, you know, a really heavy day of talking about our businesses. So the next day is our fun day and that’s where we’ll go to. I mean, some of the things we’ve done before is we’ve gone to Magic Kingdom. We’ve gone to one of the holiday parties they had at night. We’ve even done a fireworks cruise that was hosted by Debbie of Chime t q m, and we were so thankful for these experiences. So we can’t reveal what 2020 threes fun experiences will be, but just know we like to enjoy Disney and we have been there enough that we kind of try to use our strategies to get through the lions and get in as many reds as we can or eat as much food as we can depending on which park we’re at.
Yes, when you go to Pixie Dust live, you get a lot of Disney packed into a short period of time. I mean, we have in the past cleared all of the marque riots at Hollywood Studios by like 1:00 PM
Yeah, I remember one person who had come with us her first time to Disney had been a few weeks prior, and she was like, I did not enjoy Epcot. And that turned around like instantly with our trip because there’s a strategy to doing it in a way that is enjoyable and there are ways to do it that are just not as enjoyable. You get stuck in the crowds, you get stuck in lions and maybe don’t get the experience you were hoping for. And it’s also really hot. So sometimes like all of those things compounding can make a trip less ideal than it looks like on the videos online. But yeah, so we’ll have our fun day at, you know, whichever park we’re going to and whatever experiences we’re choosing to do. And that’s a little more low key. We’ll be able to have conversations while waiting in line.
We’ll, you know, have lunch and dinner together. And then on our very last day our last full day, we’ll get together again. We’ll talk about those big projects you have in mind for your business. We’ll break it down into manageable steps. We’ll start that project plan together and make our action plans. And that usually ends around noon, 1:00 PM ish, somewhere around there. We have lunch, and then take a break r and r and go out for a nice dinner together on that last night and fly out the next morning. So it’s, it’s a lot packed into a few days. And I mean, I really think the value here is getting away from your home surroundings so that way you can get into a place where you can disconnect enough from the day-to-day to think about the bigger picture in your business. And it’s, it’s done like, you know, we start talking about it on Monday, you start getting like clarity around what this looks like with the coaches Monday afternoon, Tuesday.
You’re kind of like, okay, that’s been simmering in my brain. It’s kind of in the back there. You’re, you’re on a ride having fun and then it pops back into your brain. And then on Wednesday we’re actually making this action plan. So you leave on the plane home and we, we have one attendee who I swear gets like everything we talked about done or the whole action plan, she’ll crank it out at the airport waiting for her flight to get home. And so you can get so much done in in a few days because of everything around you. So that’s a lot about like how it operates and I like, I can go on forever about that. But Yasmin, I would love for you to share just your experiences with Masterminds and what makes this one special and unique.
Yeah, so I’ve attended a lot of like in-person masterminds and retreats in the past. And depending on the scale it’s like, you know, one of two or three things. One is, you know, there’s like a hard set curriculum and it’s basically like finishing a workbook in person, which can be fine. Sometimes you need that like extra support and stuff. But what’s really guiding what you get out of it is that workbook. And it doesn’t always leave a ton of room for you to deal with like the individual challenges that you’re facing in your business. And one of the things that Nicole and I have mentioned a million times on this podcast is that we believe that every business is unique and we wanna help you build a uniquely you business. We don’t think putting you through like, you know, a 12 step plan necessarily always solves your problems.
And in fact when we had first created Pixie Dust Live, we had that sort of like action plan. But what we learned was that everyone was at slightly different stages in their business. And while that helped, you know, being able to give you a little bit more freedom to come to the business with the specific challenge that you’re facing, and I can think of, you know, when we were at Pixus Live this past October, everyone had something different that they were working on. One person was looking to really map out like their content strategy for the rest of the year. We had another attendee who really wanted to get started on a project and was trying to fit it in amongst everything else she had to do. And we needed to look at how to make space and how to break down this giant project so she can make that progress without it feeling overwhelming.
We had another attendee who wanted to map out her sales calendar for the rest of the year. And by giving y’all that flexibility to focus in on the thing that you need in your business right now with our guidance, you accomplish a lot more than maybe necessarily having you revisit, you know, one specific thing. On the other hand, I’ve also been to like masterminds and retreats where again, it’s just a bunch of like speaker sessions and there actually isn’t any like time to specifically work on your business, more of like an info session sort of thing. You’re learning information kind of like a mini conference versus a mastermind retreat and that’s,
Yeah, I’ve been to some like that. And what’s interesting about those is like, speakers generally have some good topics, but if you’re not in the stage that they’re at or that’s not something you need, at least my brain, I get a little squirrely and I start thinking about something else and then at the end of the session they’re like, I’m giving you 15 minutes to do this workbook I’ve given. And I’m like well but I don’t need that. Or I’ve already done that. And so it, you just awkwardly kind of sit around like, what do I do now? Mm-Hmm. it, and it’s great if you’re at a stage where you want to take in all of the information cuz you’re maybe starting out but when
Or expanding into another area of your business. Yeah. And you just need to learn more. Again, nothing wrong with either of the formats that we’re talking about. Yeah. But I feel like what makes Pixie Dust very unique is it really ends up in a lot of ways being an individualized consulting session. And that’s in, that’s really what brought this about when we first started Pixie Dust Live. It stemmed from a special like consulting session Nicole and I would do for our clients that I would refer to as Dis and Biz because, you know, you went to Disney, you had some fun, but then we also really focused in on their business and their specific in vigil business and how are we going to replicate that with a group of women. It turned out that yes, we have some guided sort of prompts to start things off that get everyone’s like juices going. But once that happens then we zero in on what you need to focus on and help you create that action plan for that stage of business where you’re at and for your project.
I have worked from home for, oh, like nine years now mm-hmm. even before I started this business I was working from home and that means that I can have a successful business. My clients have successful businesses, all virtual. There’s nothing like, I am not an advocate for, you gotta be in the office five days or your hybrid or any of that stuff. But there is something very important about getting with other people in person or having a connection with people. Yes. And so when you operate your own business, and maybe you’re not at that level where you have an employee or you have even a virtual assistant who’s regularly there. You might have someone who does a couple of tasks, but you don’t have like a weekly meeting with that person. You can feel really isolated and the ideas can be hard to come across.
You might be trying to talk to your spouse or your sister or your parents or your siblings or whoever about your business and what your ideas are. And it, it’s just they, they’re not, they don’t know, they don’t know this industry. They don’t know what, how marketing works. They don’t know any of that. And so getting together in person, we have the tools and framework to walk you through like, okay, let’s, let’s do this first, let’s talk about this opportunity. Let’s talk about this challenge. Okay. And now here’s three coaches who all support multiple clients. I mean, between me, you and Latasha, there’s probably a history of somewhere between 60 to 80 clients, businesses we’ve been in where we can kind of say, well we learned this from this person. And if there’s one thing I can say about coaching programs that are out there sometimes they will teach you what they did mm-hmm.
And sometimes that feedback is received as I need to completely copy everything they, they did and then I will be successful or then my product will sell more. And that’s just not true. You need to take the bits that work among all the different things you’re learning, combine it with what you know about your products, your audience, how you show up. Cuz if you’re taking advice from someone who loves to do video content and you are the introvert who would rather write emails and blog posts, you need to adapt the strategies that they’re sharing for your audience and your personality and how you show up. And so sometimes these coaching programs exist and they’re not, not meant for your unique business. Mm-Hmm. , they’re kind of giving a framework and telling you follow this, and then you end up following it and it doesn’t have success and you’re left standing at the end with, I thought if I did these things, it would work. And so that’s where when you come to Pixus live, it’s, well, what have you tried? What haven’t you tried? Where are your strengths? Where are your weaknesses? And so we kind of go through that strategic planning process because Yasmin and I both have corporate backgrounds mm-hmm. . And so we’re bringing that in in a scale that is a more micro level and we’re really getting into the weeds. We know your businesses like before we get to Disney. Yeah.
We’re not do that download in Orlando. We’ve done,
We we’ve already talked to you and understood your business and checked out everything that you’re doing. We, we understand that when we get in. So it is very much like a personalized consulting session.
So that brings me to our next question, which is, is Pixie Dust live for Disney businesses only? And the answer is no. I don’t think we have a, we, you know, we have one sort of adjacent Disney business. One of the attendees in the past has been a Disney travel planner, but everyone else comes from different industries. We have one person in the biotechnology genetic space. We have one person who you know, teaches makers about safety and compliance. We have another attendee who’s a software developer, another attendee who designs stationary and paper goods. We really have a lot of spread in terms of where everyone’s coming from, which I think is fantastic because it really allows different viewpoints and perspectives to come together. You know, one of the things they say is like, look to another industry and see what they’re doing well and how you can adapt that to your own business.
And you get that here. Now, if you have a Disney business, you’re gonna be right at home because I mean, I am a regular consumer from Di Disney Small Shops. I don’t, you can’t really see my ear collection, but it’s, it’s massive. So we love Disney businesses and we have a lot of experience with, you know, how to succeed on Etsy and other e-commerce platforms. But no, you don’t have to have a Disney business in order to come to Pixie Dust Live. You can be from any industry. And honestly, between Nicole and I, we probably have some perspective from just past experience working in it. Like my career spans from doing like everything from like marketing and public relations to pharma technology. So we, we’ve, when C P G, like we’ve run the gamut. Nicole’s worked in like at banks and then like policy
Yeah. Fraud collections, yeah. Risk management, like a lot of things like that. And I would just add to that you also don’t need to be a Disney fan. Yes. we have obviously had some people come who they take vacations to Disney with their family or, you know, we had someone who had started a Disney planning, a terrible agent planning business, but we, we also had people who hadn’t been since they were children or hadn’t been at all. And that’s part of the fun and awe and wonder that you get when you come, is you just kind of be, can separate from your everyday life. And that is so helpful to the creative process. Mm-Hmm. . And so you, you don’t have to be a Disney fan beyond I’ve seen a couple movies or I really like singing the songs from Encanto.
But you will become a Disney fan after going
With us. You’ll, I mean, what was our, one of our guests had not been to Disney ever, or maybe she was very young. And so she did Pixie Dust live in October, then brought her husband in December because she was like, no, we just need to experience this together and had a blast. And I think I just saw on her Instagram that she was there a week again. Yeah. so
She’s gone back like four or five times I think since we went together in October of 2021.
Yeah. So I, I, you know, the disclaimer at the bottom of the page, it’s like results not guaranteed. I, I we’re not responsible for future Disney fanatic status . But yeah, so you don’t need to have a Disney business and you don’t need to have any familiarity with the parks, honestly. This is all about branching outside of your comfort zone a little bit, meeting some other people, having intentional strategic focus time in your business. And then we’ll have the fun experiences for you. And honestly, as a mom, there’s nothing more amazing than leaving my house and having everything planned for me when I arrive. Like meals like you, you get to choose what you want to eat, but we’ll tell you which restaurants and give you the menu. So you know, it’s, it’s really freeing to not have to think about those things either. You, you come, you arrive, someone else is telling you what to do and where to go and you just get to enjoy it.
And the best part is for us, like planning a Disney trip is like 60% of the fund. So , we love doing it. That’s how you know you’re gonna have a good time.
Yeah. So I mean, if you’re interested in attending, it is an application basis. We have five spots this year and two have already been taken up as of the recording of this. I don’t know how many will be when it airs, but if you have questions, please email us. Hello@pixiedustandprofits.com. We’re happy to hop on a call and give you a more full picture what the experience is like, although I think it’s pretty well represented and what we talked about today. And it is application based and that’s just so we can make sure that there would be a fit among other attendees. And also we’re not here to just take someone’s money. We feel very strongly that you need to be in, be in the right business level for this. And that’s not to say you need to be like a six figure business or anything like that, but I would say that this isn’t for the person who is thinking about starting a business but has not started one yet.
This is a little more advanced than that. And while you would be able to absorb some information here, I think you’ll have to have, you know, at least some sales have been in business for like a year, maybe two. And you don’t have to have steady, consistent like five figure months or anything like that, but just enough to know what your business is, who your audience is, is, or who you want your audience to be. So I, I would say that the application is more for us to make sure that, you know, you’re in a stage where this information will be helpful to you because there’s nothing we would dislike more than for you to come and b realize mm-hmm. , oh, this is a little more advanced than what I need. We have been in that situation before. It doesn’t feel good. We have other opportunities for you, so there is an application for it. And you can fill it out right at pixiedustandprofits.com/live. And again, if you have any questions, hit us up on Instagram or send us an email.
Thanks so much for joining us. Again. We hope you learn a lot about what goes on behind the scenes at Pixie Dusts Live and we hope to see you in October. But until then, this is our last episode of the season. Can you believe that, Nicole?
I know I was looking at the list earlier and realizing this is episode 78, season six, that means season seven is around the corner. And first of all, I don’t feel like I have known you long enough to have had six seasons of Pixie Dust & Profits and we knew each other for years before this started. So we hope you’ve been enjoying these episodes. If you have ideas for things that you wanna hear more about, like we talked a lot about leadership in the last half of this season, if there’s something you wanna hear more about, please reach out to us on Instagram. Let us know. Pixie Dust & Profits, email us at email@example.com. We love hearing from you. We love seeing your shares of podcast episodes on Instagram stories. So go ahead and do that and we’ll see you real soon with season seven.
Feb 7, 2023
Hello, and welcome back to Pixie Dust and Profits. I’m Yasmine. And I’m Nicole. And today we are kicking off part two of our discussion of Bob ER’s core leadership philosophy. So in our previous episode, we talked about optimism, courage, focus, and decisiveness. And if you haven’t listened to part one, we highly encourage you to do so. We dive into you know, some pretty big themes that drive the success that Bob Ira has had. In this week’s episode, we are gonna be looking at curiosity, fairness, thoughtfulness, and integrity. So curiosity is where we’re gonna kick things off. And the quote that he said about that is something that we’ve heard quite a bit, and that is the path to innovation begins with curiosity, innovate or die. And I’m not gonna lie, as a former mba, former mba, I still have an mba. As an mba.
I kind of love that quote because one of my favorite favorite books in business school was Michael Porter’s, like Five Forces Theory about you know, how innovation has to happen in businesses. And, you know, the classic example is like Netflix and how Blockbuster was given the chance to buy them. And they said no, and now they’re left in the dust. And Netflix is like this huge streaming company that has sparked other more traditional media companies to also launch into the streaming space like Disney. Disney Plus we know has been you know, a pretty big success until recently where kind of lost quite a bit of money under the helm of the former Disney c e o, Bob Chapa. But I feel like innovation was key to how Bob ier ran Disney and really transformed it. I mean, when he came in, in 2005, Disney was in trouble.
We’ve gone through some of the challenges that Disney had in earlier episodes and we’ll link them down below in the show notes. But he came in and basically took a company that was starting to crumble and completely revolutionized it. Disney’s theme parks grew, those like hit movies came back and all of this happened under Bob I’s Home because he knew that in order for Disney to really grow it had to look beyond what it was. And that included a lot of IP acquisitions. We talked about how he bought, or he, not he bought, but he led the purchase of Marvel. The greater partnership with Apple and Pixar Lucas Film and Fox. The, that was his brainchild and that was what he led to like really grow Disney’s ip. So, you know, we have more than just our Disney princesses. He really expanded Disney’s presence across the globe. It took him two decades to build Disney Shanghai. And he knew that if Disney sort of went along the current path of just like animation and you know, theme parks that would only go so far. They needed a new audience. I mean, back then people thought once they kids became teenagers, they were a little bit too old for Disney. Nicole, I don’t think you ever really felt that way, but, you know, we’re, we’re of a, we’re a different breed. We’re a different breed
Of people. Yeah. Yeah. And we also, you know, everyone has different kids who value different things. Yeah. My, my niece and nephew are all about the roller coasters and my son wants to do scavenger hunts for Chippendale in Epcot. So . Yeah. Very different personality types. That’s all good. And there’s times for different things. Absolutely. I think what’s interesting about curiosity when it comes to Bob Iger is that it also pairs with focus, which is what we talked about mm-hmm. in the last episode because he really just adamantly said he had, you know, three strategic objectives for the company and that was it. And everything that he, every decision he made, every, everything that he asked people to do revolved around that. And one of them was about basically content, you know? Mm-Hmm. , making sure that they have that storytelling library to pull from.
So the curiosity side of things comes in when you sit in a room and it’s like, alright, what, you know, if our goal is to, you know, have the best storytelling and the best stories ever, what can we do? And, you know, someone throws a dart out there and they’re like, that would be amazing if we had Star Wars. And then it, it goes from there, you know? And so the playfulness and curiosity, you can still have focus barriers around it. But I think some of this is why Bob Chap was, you know, taken down from the role of CEOs because
He was not a storyteller.
He was not a storyteller. And also one of the first things he did when he became c e o was to centralize. And basically, if you’re ever worked in corporate, like you’re trying to make the org chart a little bit leaner and just have straight up lines instead of having all these branches everywhere. And so he was trying to consolidate a lot of the creative teams. And the easiest way to stifle creativity is to make everyone feel fearful that they’re gone next. That they have to choose safe ideas or, you know, they won’t be the chosen one. All of that, I feel like we’re starting to get into fairness, which is the next one. Yes. But they all go hand in hand. And that curiosity, that playfulness, that creativity was stifled under the previous short term c be because he brought that pessimism into the workplace of, you know, have a hit or we’re not doing it.
He made some interesting choices with what to release on Disney Plus versus the theater. And, you know, there was that lawsuit with Scarlet Johansen. Like, those things aren’t great for pr and it also sends a very clear message to your creative team that, you know, you’re not important to the business anymore cuz I’m just gonna do what I want and accept the lawsuits. And that definitely messes with people. And so, you know, getting into fairness, which is his next point, he talks about how strong leadership embodies the fair and decent treatment of people. That empathy is essential. People commit honest mistakes, they deserve second chances. And judging people harshly just gives fear and anxiety and discourages communication and innovation. And so we, we just kind of talked about that, where like, you know, centralizing, firing, getting rid of some key staff members just breeds that fear and anxiety.
And the other thing with fairness, I think we talked about this a little bit in the last episode, where you have very strong fans of this brand. Whether it be the entertainment side or the park side or, or whatever may be. And it’s, it was an interesting choice to kind of punish your biggest fans with the park changes mm-hmm. in lieu of something else. And so it, it, it was a very interesting time to be someone who liked Disney. I I obviously have friends who are big Disney people and we would talk about how, you know, I’ve never thought about selling my D V C before, but I’m kind of considering cuz I’m just not seeing an end to all of this nickel and di I believe we actually mentioned this on an episode back in October before the Bob Iger news, we were talking about how, you know, we’re just feeling like the magic is gone, that we’re just a paycheck to, to this brand.
We’re not, you know, celebrated in any way. I know the pandemic had some things to do with that, but there were things called gosh, what are they called? Those magic nights that they have for DV c owners. And it’s just like, you know, after the park closes, you can get three hours in a park and they have a couple of rides open and you get a free dinner voucher, and things like that. Were going away. And, you know, they don’t guarantee parks for Moonlight Magic and other events just by buying a timeshare. Absolutely. But it really took a swung to, is this fair? I feel like this is the one-sided relationship right now.
I just love to talk about another aspect of fairness that we really saw come into play under Bob ER’s leadership, and that is the inclusivity mm-hmm. that Disney is accepting to anyone and everyone, no matter what family you come from, whether they’re like, you know, a traditional nuclear family or not. You know, we saw Disney come out with a bit of a, a pride collection a couple years ago and, you know, you could say it’s just rainbows, but they were really, you know, taking a stance and showing their support for Disney fans regardless of, you know, who you love. We’re also seeing it with the exploration of different cultures. You know, over the past couple years we’ve been seeing different, like princesses of different ethnicities and really diving into their cultures in a more like genuine manner In term, like with Encanto for example. You know, we’ve,
Well, you know, there’s still problematic elements to it. Absolutely. We could talk about how Tiana is a frog for half of the movie . But they are redoing Splash Mountain. It’s actually closed as of the other day, two day two or three days ago. They, it was down and they’re reaming that, and so I hope they do a really great job with the theme. One of the stories he talks about is Black Panther and giving the green light to that project and having that project move forward. I mean, he was repeatedly told that no one would go to the box office to see a black superhero. Like people actually said that to him. And he said, no, they will. And, you know, green lighted that project and it went on to be one of the biggest Marvel sellers there were. And, you know, whether he saw that as dollar signs or the right thing to do, he talks so much about fairness, integrity, which we’ll get into later.
And just, you know, being a decent person because that’s what will translate to your business, you know mm-hmm. you’re not gonna say, oh, they’re a really good person, but they’re, you know, their business is terrible. Like they’re ex exploiting people or something. Mm-Hmm. , they usually don’t go hand in hand because if your values are here, you, you can’t change your values so much that the company is completely different. Absolutely. So I think that that’s just like great examples of how he’s bringing fairness into everything and, you know, how can we do this in our businesses?
There’s so many ways. I think like, one is if you’re looking at, just like inclusivity is really thinking about like your hires and ensuring that you’re bringing in people from different backgrounds and perspectives that can add so much richness to how you move forward with your business. Because different perspectives really help you look at things through a different lens and help you improve your product, improve how you’re delivering your product and messaging to your audience. I mean, I’m, I’m gonna throw in like just a couple of stats for Disney, but you know, 50% of their employees worldwide are women, which is pretty sweet. 49% of their series leads and regulars are people of color. And we’ve been seeing that more and more, especially with like Disney Plus. We’re seeing a lot more representation on those channels. And 46% of their US employees are people of color. So I really feel like they’re not just, you know, doing it for the sake of saying like, we’re inclusive. Like they’re, they’re walking the walk.
I think they recognize that they’re a brand about storytelling and mm-hmm. , you can’t tell just one specific a
Percent subset of human beings stories. Right. I mean, the whole focus on getting Shanghai Disney was a huge talk about all of this, where it was making something authentically Chinese but distinctly Disney. Or maybe it was the other way around, but it, it was about translating the Disney Parks experience to a different culture in a way that was respectful, appreciated, fun for them. You know, just the different belief systems that people have, the haunted mansion is completely different in China and there’s a reason for that. Culturally. They really made sure to think about that in a holistic view. And I, and I just wanna add this quote he has, which I think is so important. I mean, this may, again, this is probably my scars from working in corporate, but he says, when hiring, try to surround yourself with people who are good in addition to being good at what they do, genuine decency and instinct for fairness and openness and mutual respect is a rarer commodity in business than it should be.
And you should look for it in the people you hire and nurture it in the people who work for you. And I think that is so important. Even as small business owners, making sure we have fair hiring practices, even if it’s just a contractor, we’re paying them fairly. We’re paying living wages, you know, we’re not taking their labor and using it to make multimillions, but paying our staff 5,000 a year, you know, it’s, it’s just being fair and nurturing that in your team and yourself. I I just think it means a success, more successful long-term operation than just a get rich quick mm-hmm. type of scheme.
A hundred percent. So this kind of leads us into the next point, which is thoughtfulness. And, you know, we can talk about thoughtfulness in terms of just like consideration, fairness, but in the context that Bob Iger mentioned, it was about taking time to really like, think things through with intention and to develop informed opinions. And again, I feel like we saw this in play very recently with some of the big decisions that he made where he took the time to really like listen and review the feedback of, you know, what ultimately makes Disney money, which is its audience, right? And think about the long term impacts to make these decisions to roll back some very unpopular either like slightly pre pandemic or post pandemic things that rolled out like the, we talked about this in the previous episode, but it was parking at resource.
You had to pay about 2015 to 25 bucks a night to park your car. That’s gone. It’s free if you’re staying on site. He’s rolling back the limitations around park hopping before you couldn’t really go to park until like one or 2:00 PM Now it’s being rolled back to 11:00 AM as of February 4th. Another big thing is Disney has been increasing their chicken prices, like it feels like nonstop, literally. So pandemic, like, I feel like it used to be like once a year, I, it might still be, I mean, I’m sorry I didn’t fact check this before like saying this point, but like, it honestly feels like, like every like couple months it’s like, oh, prices are increasing again. Better get your tickets and looking at the price of tickets, for example, that I paid in just before 2020 and now it’s like almost 50% more expensive, which is wild.
And I know, I know there’s inflation going up, but like not 50% inflation, especially considering Disney Parks has been more profitable post pandemic than it was even pre pandemic. It’s wild. So one thing that he decided to do was not necessarily roll back prices. Cause I think that’s a little bit hard to do, like once you release them to take make tickets cheaper immediately. But the days in which Disney tickets are going to be at their cheapest, they’re expanding that significantly. So rather than it being like, you know, 30 days out of the year that you can get tickets starting at like 1 0 5, it’s being expanded to like 90 to a hundred days. So he’s really trying to, you know, bring back that sense of inclusivity and fairness. So that Disney really can be for everyone. And he’s taking these ti he’s take, lemme do backtrack and it might seem like it was like, you know, a rush decision. But keep in mind Bob Iger was chairman this entire time, so he’s been taking in this feedback. He’s been really looking at how these changes have been impacting the Disney community. And while the decision seems swift now that he’s CEO again, I’m sure that they’ve been percolating for quite a while.
Yeah. And it, it talks about I mean the thing with thoughtfulness is he says it’s so underrated, right? Mm-Hmm. . And he actually said in an interview years ago when he stepped down as c e o, that he resigned for a very specific reason. There was just a light bulb moment he had and he was like, it’s time he had tried to resign before they renegotiated another year, and then it turned into two. And it it’s something you so rarely see in leadership. And he said that he just started listening less to other people. And whether that was cockiness or ego or the fact that he had so, so many successful deals along the way, or just that he had been CEO for 15, 16 years and he had gotten complacent. He said, I used to listen to people, people a lot more.
I used to defer to others. And I just started listening less. And he said, you know, that was an early sign to him that it was time and it wasn’t like the only reason why he decided to resign, but it was a contributing factor, right? And so I think that’s such a level of thoughtfulness to like sit back and take a moment of like, okay, I’ve been leading the charge and I’ve kind of been telling people like, this is what we need to do. And you know, when you are running a creative business, you can’t be making all the decisions. And so I, I think thoughtfulness is huge there. And this also plays into integrity, right? Not only did he have those feelings personally about why he should resign because he was like noticing that maybe there’s some things going on here and maybe it’s time, but he actually said it in an interview.
Like he actually stood up and said, you know, I want to be a good leader. I want to be remembered as a good leader. I make mistakes too, and it’s time, it’s time to move on because I’m just not at the point where I can be leading this creative company anymore. And the other part of integrity that I think came across really strongly and his book was about the high quality of the storytelling mm-hmm. you know, when he took over Disney from the last Bob when he had took it over, they were in a point where they had had multiple flops in the box office back to back to back. And Pixar was really what was saving the brand. And Pixar felt like they were the ones saving the brand, and that’s why the relationship with Disney started going sour. And so, you know, he talks about that high standard of quality quantum, that timeless feeling.
And, you know, that was his number one goal with the brand. And he started in 2005 as c e o. And you know, if you think back to maybe the last 10, 15 years, you’ve got Frozen and Moana and I mean just so many blockbuster timeless stories in the last 15, 20 years. And I think that it just goes to that high quality product and treating people with high integrity. And this is also why we’re starting to see some of those rollbacks from the decisions that Chap made. Mm-Hmm. . So he talks about integrity being like this how you look at your business in the long term, right? It’s knowing who you are, understanding what’s right, what’s wrong, and it’s really about trusting your instincts to lead the business forward, that you’re not putting the business in a place that is not going to be in a few years.
And when you look at some of the decisions traffic made, they were very short term decisions that if continued could have brought the brand to a different place in the long term. And I think the board saw that and they saw this is not the direction that we want this brand to be heading into. We need to course correct and get back to where we we were before. Because even though it was time for a new c e o, that path was the path to success that we wanna see. That’s the path we feel like we’re connected to and that this brand stands for. And so, you know, they just were going in two very different directions and they needed to course correct and talk about a brand like Disney making an overnight decision almost , it was like a weekend decision to not only get rid of the c e o that they had just extended a contract to a contract renewal, but to bring back the one before it.
If there is no case study big enough for you as a small business owner to say it’s okay to make mistakes, to admit it publicly and course correct publicly. Just look at that. I mean, that is insane to think about how Disney just flipped a switch over a weekend. News was breaking out on a Sunday night on Twitter. I mean, and they told cast members first. They told them before they told the media. I mean, when you think about that, like it’s okay to make mistakes and move on, that’s such a level of integrity that people need to be aspiring to. Absolutely. All right. We hope that you loved this Ted talk around all of Bob ER’s leadership lessons. We barely scratched the surface and I don’t even know that we did an amazing job doing it, but hopefully something in these two episodes spurred some sort of like, yes, rallying cry, I can do this, I can leave my business.
These are, you know, things that, you know, I mean, he quotes Brene Brown on the book mm-hmm. , if you, these are all such related storytellers and concepts, please just go read his book or watch his masterclass. You will learn so much. You’ll, you might not think you’re working on your business by doing it, but you are. And I, I don’t recommend books lately and it’s easy to, you know, tongue in cheek look at things and be like, oh, this is, you know, it was probably ghost written or whatever. You know what, even if it was, it was his words coming outta his mouth and sitting and watching his masterclass. It was his words coming outta his mouth. He didn’t look like he memorized this stuff. It looked like he was sharing these stories that he knew well. And he has an entire history in broadcast and TV and storytelling. So he knows how to tell a story. So it’s, it’s a good non-fiction book that I think will really get you thinking. We have one more episode left to this season y’all. So make sure you join us for that one. Subscribe on iTunes, send us a DM on Instagram @pixiedustandprofits. We would love to hear from you. And we have some, a special last episode of the season and we’ll see you real soon.