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Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Disney Streaming Marketing Powerful, But Why Wait on Disney+, ESPN+, Hulu Package?

by Ray Keating
October 29, 2019

It’s hard to doubt the ability of The Walt Disney Company to market its products. And they’re certainly not shy about getting the word out in appealing ways about its Disney Plus streaming service that goes live on November 12. But an odd question or missing piece stands out during this Disney Plus rollout.

The New York Times published an article on October 27th titled “Disney Is New to Streaming, but Its Marketing Is Unmatched.” The piece goes on to examine Disney’s ability to use various arms of its entertainment empire to cross-promote Disney Plus. And when you read the article reporting on the wide array of means Disney is and will be using to promote Disney Plus, one must be impressed. And if you’re a Disney Plus competitor – like Amazon, Netflix and Apple – you’re probably a bit nervous. Disney knows marketing in a way that the tech guys, at least at this point, don’t fully grasp.

But here’s the weird thing. Disney CEO Bob Iger, and the company has confirmed, that consumers will be able to purchase Disney Plus, ESPN Plus and Hulu as a monthly package for $12.99. That’s the same price as the standard Netflix package. Very cool, right? But this package is not available, even for pre-purchase, yet. Why make the customers who want to go all in on Disney-owned streaming – including me – wait to get this combo until November 12 when Disney Plus goes live? It’s a bit bewildering. Why not offer this combo while building up excitement during this marketing blitz?

Of course, no one outside Disney has full knowledge, and the Disney Plus, ESPN Plus, and Hulu package could go live for purchase at any moment (although on the Disney Plus sign up page, it is noted that the combo will not be available until November 12). Indeed, a surprise launch of this Disney combo could still be part of the marketing plan – making a big splash if an early sign-up were announced. Let’s hope so, as I’d like to have my Disney streaming services ready to go when November 12th rolls around.

Ray Keating is the editor, publisher and economist for DisneyBizJournal.com, and author of the Pastor Stephen Grant novels. He can be contacted at  raykeating@keatingreports.com.

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