Hey everybody, there’s a new itinerary out for arrivals 8/31 through 10/26/2019. You can find it here.

By the co-author of The easy Guide to Your Walt Disney World Visit 2019, the best-reviewed Disney World guidebook series ever.

Available on Amazon here.





Welcome to Magical Blogorail Teal!



By Dave Shute

THE MAGICAL BLOGORAIL

Welcome to those of you joining me from The World of Deej, and also to those of you just hopping aboard!

I am the 2nd stop on our Magical Blogorail.

This week, members of Magical Blogorail Teal are introducing ourselves, our blogs, and what inspired us to start a Disney blog!

(For what’s a Magical Blogorail, click here.)

To those of you visiting this site for the first time, welcome. To those of you who have been here before, welcome back.

ABOUT ME, THIS SITE, AND ITS INSPIRATION

I’ve been running this site for more than three years now. It focuses on fast and easy-to-access advice for first time visitors to Walt Disney World, especially those who don’t know whether or not they’ll ever return.

See the home page for more on what I mean by that! But come right back…

So what inspired me to start writing?

Believe it or not, I got to this site by starting to write a series of detective novels, sometime in 2004. This seemed too hard, so I thought to begin with writing a non-fiction book, and work my way up to fiction. So I kicked off looking around for a subject.

In March 2005 I went with a group of people from a client (I’m a management consultant focusing on strategy) to a convention in Orlando, and convinced most of them to join me one late afternoon at the Magic Kingdom (you may have heard us discussing health data interoperability strategy on Peter Pan).

We got to talking about first visits to Walt Disney World, and I heard some appalling stories about just miserable first visits.

So that became my subject. There’s lots of good stuff for first time visitors in the great Disney World guidebooks and websites out there, but none of these was focused solely on first time visitors.

While I began working on this topic, for a different client I was researching usability and design issues. One of the thoughts I ran across—I wish I could remember the exact quotation—was “figure out what problem your users are trying to solve, and solve it for them.”

That led to an insight that re-shaped my approach and transformed my target from a book to a website.

What are the problems first time visitors to Walt Disney World are trying to solve?

The problems are when to go, how long to stay, where to stay, what to budget, what to do when, etc…

So I set as my goal giving an exact answer to each of these key questions all on just one page. That became my home page, and was why the subtitle of the site became The Walt Disney World Instruction Manual—as I saw myself writing an instruction manual, not an encyclopedia.

And also why it became a website instead of a book…as it’s hard to publish a one-page book!

I knew of course that not everyone would be able to go the week I said or stay where I suggested. So to be helpful to those who couldn’t follow the exact instructions, I developed the next level of content as “Next Best Options.”

A first time visitor, but can’t go the week I recommend? The site gives the list of the weeks of the year ranked in order. Can’t stay where I recommend? It recommends the Disney resorts ranked in order…etc. (See the left side navigation for all this, or head back to the home page.)

Over the next couple of years, I collected and analyzed the data, synthesized it into recommendations, and actually opened the site in WordPress in early 2008.

Response since has been gratifying.

I can tell by my comments that a lot of first time visitors are making their way to the site, and getting value out of it.

But, surprisingly, I can tell from my repeat visitor statistics that a lot of experienced Disney World visitors and plain old Disney fans are enjoying the site as well. (Either that or I am so confusing I take multiple visits to understand!)

But still no detective novels…

So that’s my story, and thanks for joining me today!

THE MAGICAL BLOGORAIL CONTINUES

Your next stop on the Magical Blogorail Teal Loop is The DisneyFAITHful.

Here is the map of our Magical Blogorail should you happen to make a stop along the way and want to reboard:

1st Stop ~ The World of Deej
2nd Stop ~ yourfirstvisit.net
3rd Stop ~ The DisneyFAITHful
4th Stop ~The Many Adventures of a Disney-Lovin’ Spectrum Mom
Final Stop ~ Capturing Magical Moments

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My response to questions and comments will be on the same page as the original comment, likely within 24-36 hours . . . I reserve the right to edit and delete comments as I choose . . . All rights reserved. Copyright 2008-2019 . . . Unless otherwise noted, all photos are by me--even the ones in focus--except for half a dozen from my niecelets . . . This site is entirely unofficial and not authorized by any organizations written about in it . . . All references to Disney and other copyrighted characters, trademarks, marks, etc., are made solely for editorial purposes. The author makes no commercial claim to their use . . . Nobody's perfect, so follow any advice here at your own risk.