Stan World is a virtual realm full of virtual resorts. Stars and brands can own and operate resorts, and users have the freedom to experience those platforms, including concerts, malls, and theme parks. Virtual resorts are essentially Stan World’s definition of how media franchises expand through digital platforms.
This is the 5th article of an ongoing series of analyses of stars and brands that went through major changes into the digital age, to achieve greater success: Fanthropology — The Study of Fans and IP’s (Stars and Brands).
Without a doubt, Disney+ was one of the most anticipated streaming platforms since Netflix. As a media entertainment company with IP’s more than one can count, Disney and its entrance into the “streaming war” was exciting news for the general public.
Now a week after launch, Disney+ delivers on its promises, with more than 10 million subscriptions on launch day. The platform is based on a business model that cannot fail — take a closer look.
You want it? they’ve got it
Since buying Miramax for $60 million in 1993, Disney has been on the hunt for media franchises and brands, namely Pixar (acquired in 2006), Marvel (2009), Lucasfilm (2012), and 21st Century Fox (2019). These acquisitions essentially made Disney into the media conglomerate as we know today.
Consider the network of Disney-owned franchises as an integrated streaming platform. There’s a ton of content on this barely-a-week-old platform already, with more to come. Nowadays people are well aware of the consequences that came with cord-cutting — there are simply too many streaming platforms and options, and subscribing to a network just to watch that one show is nonsensical. So is Disney+ just further complicating matters for consumers?
While it may seem like just another option in this already over-saturated streaming market, it actually alleviates the burden placed on consumers. Disney’s multiple brands and IP’s provide diversified content on a single platform. Not that it has everything for everyone, but at least enough to help consumers keep things relatively simple.
Advertise content through content
Advertising is made simple for companies like Disney. How? It’s a simple as putting a bunch of characters that people are likely to be fans of or at least have some emotional connection with.
These are not just ads, but also key examples of Disney’s transmedia approach — remember, Disney’s current assets include not only movies and tv, but also theme parks, merchandise, a broadcast network (ABC), and cable sports (ESPN). There are endless ways for this company to promote and advertise their content through different platforms. Disney transmedia is literally a network where each platform creates a synergy effect with one another, and this is essentially why Disney dominates entertainment media as a whole. Now, their entry into the streaming war will only empower this network further.
Like Disney+? Try ESPN+ and Hulu
Disney+ is offered as a bundle with ESPN+ and Hulu for just $12.99, which is a great value for customers and a great way for the company to introduce even more content to Disney+ users. Hulu serves as a more adult-themed platform (including Japanese Anime), while ESPN+ is basically an alternative to cable sports.
What’s interesting to note is that there are little to no overlaps among these 3 platforms, in terms of content distribution, so the bundle actually makes sense — consumers don’t feel cheated by overpaying just to get similar content.
Stan World’s Parks and Resorts
Disney’s brand power is ultimately reflected in its revenue from parks and resorts around the world, accounting for $26.23 billion dollars in 2019. The company’s strength as an “overarching network for multiple stars and brands” is what justifies the amount of dollars people spend at its parks and resorts.
All of Disney’s parks and resorts are physical locations. But what if a virtual version was made available? As previously stated, Stan World is a virtual world platform for virtual resorts. But is it just that? There’s more. It’s bigger than what it seems — like Disney’s physical parks and resorts, Stan World is a network for stars and brands, where the potential for monetization is limitless.
Because Stan World is completely digital, fans will no longer be bound in chains from visiting their favorite theme parks—physical location, in addition to travel and accommodation costs, will no longer serve as decisive factors. This is one of Stan World’s greatest asset: accessibility.