Disney Social Media Moms Celebration “On the Road!” at Disneyland Resort
Disney Social Media Moms Celebration is a coveted invitation-only social media conference that provides valuable insight, tools & content from engaging speakers, exciting Disney news and magical experiences and events at the parks. The Disney Social Media Moms Celebration (DisneySMMC) started at the Walt Disney World Resort as an annual event, but quickly became so popular that it branched out into an “On the Road!” format as well.
This year the Disney team took the show “On the Road!” again and included a stop at the Disneyland Resort. I was so very honored to have been invited to this event! This is the first time a DisneySMMC “On the Road!” conference has taken place at the Disneyland Resort and I was overjoyed to be part of the celebration.
Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel was our host for the day. When I arrived I was greeted by smiling Cast Members, a beautiful breakfast spread with warm healthy proteins, fresh fruit and tantalizing pastries.
When I turned around to see the rest of the room set-up I let out a loud gasp. The entire room was glowing from the light of Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration Made with Magic Ear Hats and Paintbrushes. Each table was beautifully decorated and each seat had a canvas tote filled with gifts for every attendee! The room looked magical and elegant.
The Disney Social Media Moms Celebration team had a lot planned for us so we began right on time with Leanne Jakubowski O'Regan kicking off the morning with a welcome.
Disney News & Updates
Next, journalist and PR Director Michele Himmelberg took the stage to announce all the latest Disney news from around the globe. There is so much happening from Shanghai to the Disney Cruise Line!
- Aulani, A Disney Resort and Spa, is celebrating its 5th anniversary! Keep your eyes open for an exciting new announcement from Aulani.
- Disney Cruise Line will be adding 2 new cruise ships to its fleet, bringing the total number of ships to 6 by 2023. Ships will set sail from NY, CA and TX in the Fall of 2017.
- Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: BREAKOUT! Coming to Disney California Adventure Park Summer 2017. Be sure to visit the Hollywood Tower of Terror before its final drop in January 2017!
- 14-acre Star Wars themed land is well under way at the Disneyland Resort. Everyone is looking forward to this new world.
- Shanghai Disney held its grand opening on June 16, 2016. The first Disney resort in Mainland China, its also Disney's sixth resort worldwide.
- Anna and Elsa have been spreading Frozen chEAR from coast to coast with "Frozen - Live at the Hyperion" in Disney California Adventure and the Frozen Ever After attraction in Epcot.
- A Royal Welcome took place at Walt Disney World for the newly crowned Princess Elena of Avalor. Our #DisneyFamilia is so happy to welcome her!
- Pandora the World of AVATAR at Disney's Animal Kingdom is coming to life with details and technology that we can't wait to see!
So much is happening with Disney globally that it's hard to choose only one destination to visit. By the end of this year I will have visited three Disney Resorts in 2016: Walt Disney World, Disneyland and Disneyland Paris. I hope that as the years go on I can continue to add new Disney Resorts to my list of memory making trips.
Disney Parks Blog
Erin Glover, Editorial Content Director of Disney Parks Blog (currently celebrating it's 7th anniversary!) took the stage next to discuss how the Disney Parks Blog content is managed. With over 100 authors and so much exciting news to share - the blog is definitely growing and taking shape almost daily with features such as:
- Updated home page with snippets of stories from all over the globe (easier for readers to quickly access what interests them)
- Live features such streaming and Q & A (#DisneyParksLIVE)
- A popular collection of wallpapers featuring beautiful images and art
- Behind the scenes videos
- Series posts, such as those celebrating long-time Cast Members (my personal favorite!)
I received FastPasses to ride Soarin' Around the World later that day at Disney California Adventure Park, which I LOVE! This behind the scenes video is an example of the content you'll find on the Disney Parks Blog. The videos are great!
Erin also spoke about the importance of integrating all social media platforms by cross-posting and curating boards on Pinterest. Interesting to note, the Disneyland Instagram feed consists of Guest generated content. Be sure to tag @Disneyland and use the hashtag #Disneyland when posting to Instagram while in the park. You may be featured!
Can we please discuss how much I enjoyed meeting Victoria Lim?! Her presentation on video - from statistics to app choices - was everything I wanted/needed to hear. I love video and would rather do more recording and less typing, but I'm lacking the confidence needed to get in front of the camera. With the tips and tools Victoria discussed, I realize I can get on a screen for a few seconds and quickly move on to showcasing images while I continue to speak.
- Apps to check out: Majisto, Videolicious, Quick App
- Tips: "zoom with your feet" (better quality, less shaking), be aware of wind and ambient noise, no TMZ style moving when recording
- Smartphone Tools: Microphone, small lenses that can be attached to camera, GorillaPod stand
It wouldn't be a Disney event without special guests and surprises. As soon as Leanne began giving us clues as to who the first guest would be, I guessed it was Tiffani Thiessen. I was right! Obviously we loved her on "Saved by the Bell" and "90210", but we really love watching her now on her cooking show "Dinner at Tiffani's". The concept of the show is cool: she cooks great meals and then invites guests (her real friends) over for dinner to enjoy the food. Often her guests help prepare the meals with her which is fun to watch as well. She always looks amazing on the show! After sitting just a few feet from her, I can tell you she's even more gorgeous than you think.
When I asked her for tips on how to look as effortless as on her on video, she was quick to note that she has an entire team from wardrobe and make-up to cameras and lights that help her during her day-long shoots.
She spoke about her career and her life as a working mom. She spoke about pitching her show to the Food Network, without any cooking show experience, because she just felt it was something she wanted to do. It was inspiring to hear her speak about wanting to be a working mother and not pausing her life or slowing down because of being a mother.
Our next guest, another working mom who takes major risks, ABC Weather Anchor Ginger Zee. Ginger is awesome. She is fearless, travels the globe, has appeared on "Dancing with the Stars" and is a new mother. Like Tiffani, she hasn't given up her career to be a mother. She is doing both and standing up to internet bullies while she does it.
She shared a little of her Twitter and Facebook comment feeds with us and showed us how to handle negative and troll-like behavior online. When I spoke to her alone I asked her if she sometimes feels like completely pulling the plug and disappearing from the social media world. "Only when they bring my son into it", she said. I totally get that. Kudos to her for handling the negativity with class and professionalism.
When Leanne says it's time to put all of your electronics away, with a security guard standing next to her, you know Disney magic is about to happen in a big way.
Leanne introduced Amy Smeed, first female co-head of animation on a feature film, who would be sharing in-depth behind the scenes SCENES (as in actual scenes) of "Moana" with us.
From the moment Amy began her presentation with Auli'i Cravalho's (Moana) audition story, most of us were in tears. Discovered in Honolulu, she seems like a such a sweet local girl and truly the perfect girl for the role of Moana. Also not shabby is Dwayne Johnson as Maui. I asked Amy if both actors were ever in the same studio at the same time and she replied that Auli'i recordered her voice mostly in Hawaii, whereas Dwayne was so busy he recorded in various locations. The animators begin their work once the actors are done with theirs. That's so fascinating to me! Especially considering how the mannerisms of both animated characters so naturally mimic those of the actors.
From Disney: "Moana" is a film about an adventurous teenager who sails out on a daring mission to save her people. During her journey, Moana (voice of Auli’i Cravalho) meets the once-mighty demigod Maui (voice of Dwayne Johnson), who guides her in her quest to become a master wayfinder. Together, they sail across the open ocean on an action-packed voyage, encountering enormous monsters and impossible odds, and along the way, Moana fulfills the ancient quest of her ancestors and discovers the one thing she’s always sought: her own identity.
The movie has so much heart. I wish I could tell you more, but I can't. Everything I can share is a spoiler, so all I can say is: GO SEE IT this November! From the music and animated tattoos to the strong female lead - "Moana" made me smile, dance in my chair and get a little misty.
Before she left I stopped to thank Amy for sharing so much with us and for answering my question. I also had to fangirl a little. I am so excited about this movie and am counting down the days to 11/23/2016.
Before the day ended, we still had one surprise guest to meet. The boss himself, Mr. Mickey Mouse.
I spent a few minutes reconnecting with old friends and colleagues and meeting new ones. One of the major benefits of DisneySMMC conferences is the ability to meet new people, chat with Disney media and finally meet the people you’ve engaged with online face-to-face.
We were provided with a park hopper ticket to enjoy the rest of our day in the parks. I spent the day riding my favorite attractions, enjoying Soarin' Over the World, celebrating my birthday at Carthay Lounge and snacking on my favorite park treats. I ended the night in our reserved viewing area for the Paint the Night Parade and Disneyland Forever Fireworks.
My oh my, what a wonderful day!
I cannot say enough kind things about the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration team. The event was infused with great content, social media tools, speakers I could relate to and an unprecedented amazing behind the scenes look at "Moana". Many thanks to the entire team for making this happen and for inviting me to be a part of it.
I am so thankful to have been invited!
It was nice to relive the magic again when I arrived home and opened my bag. With the end of the #Disneyland60 celebration here, it makes me happy to be able to still see Mickey & Minnie in their sparkly 60th glam.
This post is the first in a series of posts related to this event. Visit again for the second post in the #DisneySMMCDLR series.