The Walt Disney Company is well known for more than just Mickey Mouse. It is revered in business circles for its masterful marketing expertise. In particular, how it manages to generate support for individual projects across its vast landscape of diverse business segments. Silo-busting is routine at Disney and is orchestrated with panache…and perhaps a little pixie dust.
Disney’s former Director of Corporate Synergy, Lorraine Santoli, gives a first-person, behind-the-scenes account of how, under the leadership of Michael Eisner and Frank Wells, she and her colleagues ignited a synergy spark within the organization that ultimately generated a firestorm of marketing wins and soaring profits. It is all detailed in her new book, Inside the Disney Marketing Machine – in the Era of Michael Eisner and Frank Wells.
When Santoli left NBC to join the Disney team, the studio that Walt built was in a rut. Its leadership was weak, its films forgettable. The arrival of Eisner and Wells brought revolutionary change to how the company operated and, more important, how it marketed its products. The word of the day: synergy.
In Inside the Disney Marketing Machine, Santoli shows you what it was like to reshape a faltering company into today’s media juggernaut. Her enlightening anecdotes and stories, along with exclusive contributions from senior Disney management, include:
- Coming up with creative marketing campaigns that led to big box office for new Disney films and a surge in theme park attendance.
- Carrying out Eisner’s directive to bring synergy to every division in the company.
- Creating the tools that underpinned Disney’s amazing success in cross-promoting its products across 60 independent Disney business segments.
- Collaborating with celebrities, national media, and Disney’s movers-and-shakers to put the Mouse back on top.
- How the era of Eisner and Wells set the stage for the marketing powerhouse that is The Walt Disney Company today.
The following are excerpts from Inside the Disney Marketing Machine’s reviews on Amazon:
This is a lively behind-the-scenes tour of a giant, iconic U.S. corporation, focused on the stellar decade 1984-1994 when it was run by the team of Eisner and Wells. It is also a spirited presentation of marketing, both to the outside world and as a tool of management within a company, by someone who believes that “Marketing is Everything and Everything is Marketing.” The upbeat narrative, packed with anecdotes that illustrate the application of her marketing principles, is fun to read, and it gives a compelling demonstration of how to create a whole that is greater than the sum of its parts.
This book does an extremely good job of pulling back the curtain and taking you backstage and into meeting rooms where key decisions were made – as well as those times where someone in charge had an impulsive idea and ran with it without first getting permission to do so (all the way to the White House). That era at Disney is Harvard Business School material. It remains a testament to what creative people can produce when they are given freedom to create. And no company (to this day) does it like Disney. Business School-student or Disney fan – you will LOVE this book.
The arrival of Michael Eisner and Frank Wells to Disney would send shockwaves throughout the company; but ultimately produce corporate profits that were previously unimaginable. Lorraine Santoli was present to witness that chapter in the company’s history and the experience she gained is presented here for the benefit of all who are willing to listen and learn.
What a great read! Once I started, I couldn’t put it down. Very insightful on how the Disney Marketing Machine worked during the Michael Eisner era. The book not only gives a true inside look at one of the world’s most interesting companies, it also gives some great examples of synergy at work – including things that other companies can emulate! This book is a must for anyone wanting to rally their teams together to make 1 + 1 = 3 (as Lorraine puts it). Seriously – get this entertaining and insightful book now!
With the holiday season upon us, Inside the Disney Marketing Machine makes a great gift for anyone interested in Disney and what goes on behind the scenes. Get it now at Amazon.com!