Disney’s Marketing Strategy & How it Can Help You

NTEK Creative Marketing Blog - Disney's Content Marketing

Content Marketing

Disney has one of the most recognizable and familiar brands in the content industry, and that is thanks to its unique yet excellent marketing strategy. At its bare bones, Disney uses a content marketing strategy, meaning: The context/background of the product being sold is what gives it value in the eyes of the customer. In simpler terms, Disney creates a character in one of their TV shows or movies and then creates a product to sell. They use the content to naturally market their merchandise. But there’s quite a bit more to see under the surface.


Disney’s first step in its marketing strategy is its most basic, your typical advertisements, promotions, and sponsorships. The purpose of advertisements like movie trailers on Instagram or Youtube is to directly show viewers the content and why they want it. The same goes for Disney+ ads you might see on Twitter, TikTok, or anywhere in between. These advertisements drive traffic toward a specific product so that Disney can increase customer action. In 2018 Disney did a pop-up in London in order to renew interest in some of England’s previously popular theatrical plays, like Aladdin and The Lion King. This brought new customers to buy tickets because it provided a new and unique experience that made the customer want to make a purchase.

Brand Marketing

The next step in Disney’s marketing strategy is their brand, plain and simple. I can’t name a single person who doesn’t know what Disney is and what they do. If I asked a three-year-old what Disney is, they would start talking about Spider-man or Frozen. If I asked a millennial about it they would tell me about Airbud, The Lion King, or The Parent Trap. And a teenager would tell you about Star Wars the Clone Wars, Hamilton, The Avengers, or The Suite Life of Zach and Cody. The point is, that everyone knows Disney, and almost everyone associates nostalgic feelings with the brand. These positive emotions are going to keep customers and viewers coming back for more, which is why they have merchandise and resorts (Disney World), to bring people back to what they loved when they were younger, and remind them that they still do love those things. 

Cross Selling

The next part of Disney’s marketing strategy is to use its already huge name to attract customers to its other products. For example, Disney Channel on cable television attracts a lot of younger viewers. Someone watching Mickey Mouse Funhouse or Puppy Dog Pals may end up watching Spidey and his Amazing Friends next. To take it a level deeper, these same kids are also going to want to go to Disneyland, and while there they will want to get a Mickey Mouse stuffed animal or Spider-man action figure. Another example is that anybody watching Marvel is going to be led to the rest of the Marvel movies or series on Disney+. The same goes for Star Wars. Another way this is used is when someone sees a Mandalorian picture book at Barnes and Noble, they pick it up because they know their kid loves the show. This brings us all the way back to Disney’s overarching strategy of content marketing.

How This Helps Your Business

And now for the big question: How can this help you in your business? The thing to look into in regards to Disney’s strategy is its content marketing model. According to The Content Marketing Institute, “Content marketing is a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly defined audience — and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action.” Put plainly, the business should produce content that makes the customer want to buy the product. Disney has created a brand that is made up of its characters: Mickey Mouse, Elsa, Tinkerbell, Winnie the Pooh, and the list goes on. With this content, they sell merchandise like shirts or cups that people buy because they like the picture of Ariel on the front. 

What You Can Do

You can do this with something as simple as videos on TikTok: “Hey! Our brand is special because of X!” You aren’t trying to sell a product outright, you are trying to attract a customer to your brand or business, and then they make a purchase. They buy your product because the “X” that makes your business special, makes them like the business and therefore the product. To do this, your business will need a clear mission, clear values, and established goals. You also need social media accounts, which depending on your business and its niche market, will be Instagram, Facebook (or Meta), Twitter, TikTok, Linkedin, YouTube, and Reddit, as well as a website which will be a crossroads for all of this content and for the final customer action, most likely. These are the places where you will put the “content” in content marketing, and show those values, gimmicks, goals, and missions to potential customers.

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