1. What factors contributed to EuroDisney??™s poor performance during its firs year of operations
??? The high cost of an overnight stay at a nearby hotel
??? The French had their own cartoon characters and a theme park located near EuroDisney
??? Transatlantic flights were inexpensive and people were vacationing at Disney World in Orlando
??? Poor weather conditions
??? Spain held the World Fair in Seville and Barcelona was home to the 1992 Olympics which took tourists to areas other than Paris.
??? EuroDisneys marketing did not explain to Europeans what the theme park was or what attractions it had to offer the European consumer
??? Advertising was focused on the size of the park and the glamour behind it, that this poor marketing strategy hurt overall business
??? The marketing strategies of the United States were used in France and it backfired when the French visitors stayed away from the park
??? Cultural differences
2. To what degree do you consider that these factors were foreseeable and controllable by either EuroDisney or the parent company Disney
Some of the factors listed above were foreseeable and controllable. I think more research should have been conducted before making the final decision on the Paris EuroDisney location. Since Paris had their own cartoon character and theme park nearby, research should have been done to see how Mickey and friends would have been received. The French culture should have been studied more. Since the park would be located in France, what would attract the French to the park How would EuroDisney compare to their own and how would it be received
Of course, some thing weren??™t foreseeable or controllable. For instance, the weather, the price of air fare. I??™m sure the developers were aware of the world fair and the upcoming Olympics and probably thought France would receive some of the tourism from those events.
3. What role does ethnocentrism play in the story of EuroDisney??™s launch
Ethnocentrism was a large problem in the launch of EuroDisney, which was eventually worked out. Developing a theme park based on American culture, with American food, American characters, and gave the appearance that American culture is superior and people will come on their terms. Europeans lifestyles are different from Americans, including that they have wine with their meals. The park banned alcohol in the park, which was insensitive to the French. The French along with the rest of Europe didn??™t really care about the American characters. Overall ethnocentrism was a huge problem in the start up of Euro Disney, which was worked out eventually.
4. How do you assess the cross-cultural marketing skills of Disney
Disney??™s skills were very limited. They put a theme park in Europe with an American way of thinking, and did not take note of to the cultural values of Europeans. Once they saw the error of their way, they regrouped, did the proper research and devised a better plan to help the park succeed. They took note to some of the cultural needs and included some of them into their plan. Disney started including French and European favorites like Zorro and Mary Poppins. Their advertising campaign included famous European characters with the magic kingdom.
5. Why did success in Tokyo predispose Disney management to be to optimistic in their expectations of success in France
The Japanese loved the Disney characters and theme. They did not want their Disney park to reflect Japanese culture. They said they knew about Japan and they wanted an American park like the one in CA. The Japanese didn??™t have their own theme park so they wanted the ???Americanized??? theme park. .
6. Do you think the new theme park would have encountered the same problems if a location in Spain had been selected
Paris was a good location for a theme park because it already had other tourist attractions. Spain doesn??™t have the tourist draw that Paris does. I feel that they would have encountered some of the same problems, in addition to some new ones. I think Spain would want their own flavor to the theme park, which would mean knowing and understanding their cultural needs and want. I do believe that Disney would go in a little more open-minded and not as cocky if they were to develop in Spain.
7. In light of the near-bankruptcy in 2005, evaluate the proposed plans to strengthen Disney??™s appeal to the French market.
I think the proposed plans were great ideas and evoked a lot of thought. This is what should have been done prior to the original 1992 opening. The new plans considered the culture of the French market and incorporated some of their local ideals into the themes of the park. For instance, creating a character tailored for a European audience (the Halloween themed L??™Homme Citrouille or Pumpkin Man) was a great idea.
8. Now that Disney has begun work on the new Hong Kong and Shanghai locations, where and when should it go next
I think another location in the United States would be great. Somewhere in the upper mid-west would be a centralized location. We have parks in the southeast and southwest. A park that would reduce the travel time to either of those places would be a nice alternative. People from Canada could also visit this park. Canada might also be another location to consider.
9. Given your choice of Local X for the newest Disneyland, what are the operational implications of the history of Euro Disney for the new park
If the upper Midwest or Canada is selected, the park might have to be an indoor park because of the extreme temperatures. I think cultural values would be an issue, but not nearly as much as they are when building in another country. I think a theme similar to Bush Gardens would be ideal where they replicate various countries. Since our county is a melting pot, cultural values need to be considered to be successful.
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