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3 Ways Disney Drives Customer Loyalty

June 13, 2013 by Bruce Jones, Programming Director, Disney Institute

“In this ever-changing society, the most powerful and enduring brands are built from the heart. They are real and sustainable. Their foundations are stronger because they are built with the strength of the human spirit, not an ad campaign. The companies that are lasting are those that are authentic.”  - Howard Schultz

The lifetime value of a customer is a popular term in marketing circles. It substantiates efforts by companies to go above and beyond, even at a short-term profit loss, to please their customers — with the hope that that customer will reward the brand with their future loyalty.

Walt Disney recognized that the first step to creating enduring customer loyalty is to understand what people need and want, and to then build products to meet those needs and wants. Above everything else, Walt emphasized the importance of creating an authentic relationship with a customer, and continually renewing that relationship in meaningful ways.

Three ways Disney drives customer loyalty:

1. Guests associate with Cast Members: People are innately drawn to human interaction. Providing it in a friendly manner that demonstrates a willingness to go above and beyond to meet the wants and needs of each unique Guest renews that Guest’s relationship and trust in the Disney brand.

2. Magical Moments: Memories are the essence of the Disney brand and Magical Moments allow Cast Members to take a routine task, such as a package delivery, and make it special by awarding a “Guest of the Hour” certificate and pin or having an impromptu hula hoop party.

3. Value Alignment: Relationships are strengthened when the Guest’s personal values align with the values of the organization. This is one reason Corporate Social Responsibility has become an expectation of companies.

Tell us about a time an organization went beyond the call of duty to make your experience memorable. How did it impact your loyalty to that company?


Posted in Business Excellence | Tagged Customer Loyalty, Customer Retention, Building Customer Relationships, Branding Strategies, Bruce Jones | 0 Comments


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