Rubella rides again – a fine example of Mickey Mouse PR

February 9, 2010

No, seriously, it is actually a piece of PR representing Disney: but the pitch – judging from the information sent to a Press contact who was kind enough to forward it on – looks as if it could have been delivered by the hapless Rubella Pymley-Bowles, incumbent account executive at Ostentacious PR. Complete and utter PR fluff, and totally irrelevant to the target audience.

If you have any examples of Rubella-isms in Mickey Mouse PR copy, please send them in: it’s a true education for us all.


It’s grim up north – men from Manchester, Newcastle or Liverpool are more likely than anyone else in Britain to have never experienced any ‘magic’ in their lives. Most people are lucky enough to have had what they feel is a magical moment whether it is the first time they went on holiday as a child to becoming a parent themselves. For others it could be the one in a million event like winning the lottery or seeing their football team clinch a dramatic last-gasp cup final victory.

But for seven per cent of Britain’s adults – the equivalent of 3.5 million people – there has been no ‘wow’ factor at all in their lives so far, said the study by Disneyland Paris. Men seem to be more unfulfilled – 10 per cent of them have never had that special moment compared to just six per cent of women.

Regionally, Newcastle is the most depressing as 13 per cent of Geordies are still waiting for their personal ‘wow’, followed by similarly high proportions in Manchester and Liverpool. In contrast, Bristol seems the place to go as only four per cent have yet to experience their magical moment, the lowest of any UK region.

One in three adults, 32 per cent, had their first magical moment as a child when they experienced something for the first time. Disneyland Paris commissioned the survey because it believes this is the kind of reaction it gets from younger first time visitors. Most (53 per cent) define a magical moment as something so wonderful that, at the time, the feeling is that life does not get any better than this, said the survey of 1,800 UK adults.

A further 35 per cent said it has to be an event they remember for the rest of their lives to count as a magical moment. And for many, it is something they experience as a family though it can be as simple as witnessing a spectacular sunset or a parent reading fairytales to his or her children. Nine in ten (90 per cent) of parents claim they deliberately try and create magical moments as a family, most believing it helps them bond with their children.

The results were analysed by Dr. Louise Bunce, a developmental psychology lecturer at Oxford Brookes University. She said: “Magical experiences and magical moments are important and meaningful to us. “They also play a pivotal role in our psychological health and wellbeing, as well as for the development of our imagination, creativity and understanding of the world.” This was particularly true in a recession where positive experiences can act as a protective barrier against the gloom.

Disneyland Paris found, among its own visitors, that the most magical experiences at its site were watching the daily parade and the first sight of Sleeping Beauty’s castle. Hugh Wood, Vice President and Managing Director of Disneyland Paris; “No matter how old we are, there is a still a part of us that believes in magical moments. “One in three people believe sharing fairytales is one of the most magical things a parent can do with their child so we are encouraging people to embrace them and create as many magical moments as possible.”

I guess the thing which irks the most regarding the above PR content is the simple fact it is a complete waste of the editor’s time. Not relevant to him or his audience. The lack of research from the PR pre-pitch also further damages the reputation of not the London PR Agency from where it came (that’s already screwed), but an iconic global brand like Disney itself as well. Nice.


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