HAPPINESS could be the GREATEST BRAND in 2021. Here is how to implement it!


By: Vibhor Kumar Singh

Few world leaders and celebrities can boast of a popularity and recall that is enjoyed by Mickey Mouse, one of the world’s most popular and valuable Brand. Mickey Mouse is to the entertainment world what William Shakespeare is to the literally world- a defining existence without which the entertainment industry would certainly been a different DNA.

The Billionaire and The Monk
Vibhor Kumar Singh is the author of the life changing book: The Billionaire and the Monk (Click to buy on Amazon)

And to think of it, Mickey mouse is nothing but happiness personified!

The Mouse: Mickey Mouse is a brand that is also the product! Every move the product makes, every dialogue the product speaks and every smile the product gleams, emotes happiness and reflects on the brand! A very scary thought because there is little or absolutely no margin for error. It is essential that the product deliver its value satisfying ‘entertainment quotient’, which is essentially happiness.

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No amount of marketing, lineage and positioning can substitute the first hand joy of the consumer, who knows exactly whether he is been satisfied or not. The Mickey Mouse brand is all about stimulating the happiness quotient and based on the character that is projected to be a lovable, simple and cute. The product is expected to deliver a sort of escapism and bring a smile, if not laughter to the consumer. The escapism may be to a fantasy land or to one’s own innocent childhood, the success of the brand is based primarily on the ability of the product to fulfil this aspect for the past eight decades.

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The Story: the brand of the lovable Mickey Mouse requires a lot of marketing and a marketing strategy which may be the most difficult one to frame and implement. Every visual portray of the product is happiness! The key for marketing the Mickey Mouse brand lies in being able to balance the elements of free consumption with revenue generating consumption. One must remember that revenues from the brand can only be earned if the consumer pays for the experience; however, given the nature of the product which is literally just a visual creation, the risks of the consumer enjoying the experience free of cost is very high. The Brand has to market itself in a manner that even if there is a ‘free’ consumption and a sense of positivity and happiness, the brand owners are able to somehow generate tangible ‘revenue’ from its consumption. After all Happiness is a product here!

Also read by Vibhor: Are you bribing yourself to unhappiness? Here’s how to STOP!

The Reach: created in 1928 by Walt Disney and Ub Iwerks the brand Mickey Mouse is often credited to have created the world’s largest entertainment conglomerate the ‘Disney Corporation’.

Often shown as wearing red shorts, large yellow shoes, and white gloves with round ears Mickey Mouse is one of the most recognizable corporate brands. Given the fact that the brand is able to walk into a consumer’s life at a very early age, sometimes the brand holds the consumer for the entire life of the consumer. This gives the brand immense opportunity to have multiple revenue models from one single consumer.

Vibhor Kumar Singh
Vibhor Kumar Singh, the author.

Frame this, as a child you watch the character in the cinema (1st pay point), as an adolescent you buy the character to gift it to your first love (2nd pay point), as a family man you take your kids to the Disneyland (3rd pay point) and as an old man you revisit your childhood memories by seeing Mickey propose to Minnie! So much so for the agelessness of happiness.

The Promise: Mickey Mouse is a brand that stands for happiness. The positioning of the brand manages to create an aura of honesty towards the product and consumers are meant to feel happy and joyous during the process of consumption. A common house mouse may scare you but the happiness of the character is unmissable. He is mischievous in a cute way and adventurous on fun side of life. All the traits any individual would like to possess is probably this associative characteristic of the happy mouse that makes us love him.

Even though happiness is more than a smile, Mickey Mouse as a brand is the epitome of building a brand based on happiness. Happiness garnished with the halo of honesty in the Character has been successfully replicated in the way the corporation functions so that the Brand and the Company are same. After all even Walt Disney looking at the Disney Empire is believed to have once said ‘Don’t forget, it all started with a Mouse’

I guess it is time to switch on a classic Mickey video and find happiness as we say adieu to a year that has been lifechanging for the planet and move into an year that come with a burden of unlimited expectations for all of us. Merry Christmas and a very happy New Year !

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