As always, it’s been a busy start to the year here at Fundamentally Children, we ran a successful Christmas campaign, had a short break and then headed into show season with a bang as we visited London, Nuremberg, Spring Fair and New York.
We had our best year yet for the Christmas campaign. Combining gift guides and a present finder, the campaign had a total reach of 99,000 and on average, featured products saw their Good Toy Guide review increase in traffic by an average of 500 per cent.
Our next campaign is #Fun4All and will be even bigger and better. The aim is to make play accessible to all children and your product could feature. Get in touch to find out more.
Interested in joining? Click here to learn how you can make the best use of our services to promote your products and services
The toy fair season was busier than ever, and we were thrilled and humbled by how many companies are now proudly displaying their ‘Good Toy Guide’ stamp of approval on their stands, packaging and advertising. London Toy Fair saw nearly a quarter of exhibitors using our plaque – at such a big show, that’s a lot of Good Toys!
We spent a lot of time talking to companies about maximising the benefits of their endorsement. This is something we’ve become increasingly focussed on – it’s not just a case of getting the stamp and ticking a box. Getting a product endorsed opens the door to a wealth of other opportunities – all of which are designed to help those companies putting the effort into making ‘good’ products gain a competitive advantage – nice guys shouldn’t finish last!
Our shared advertising campaign also gained a great response – it’s always better having someone else telling consumers about your product. The value of experiential marketing is also increasingly recognised, and we’ve had a really positive reaction to our expanded events programme.
While the international toy fairs don’t have quite the same charm for us as Olympia, our upcoming expansion of the Good Toy Guide into the US caused a great deal of excitement – especially with companies who have international distribution. For us, the highlights of New York Toy Fair were the reactions we had from Astra, the Toy Association and the Good Toy Group to what we are doing and we’re looking forward to collaborating with all three of them as we evolve.
Nuremberg was, as always, exhausting – 12 halls in two days between two of us – next year we’re taking trainers and reinforcements. It was interesting to see how many companies are realising the value of geographically specific research. Lots of exhibitors at Spielwarenmesse told us that they are struggling to maximise their presence in the UK and we’re looking forward to supporting them with research into the perception of and engagement with their brands by the UK market.
We are currently looking for a European account manager, so do get in touch if you’ve got a sales background, can speak a couple of languages and are looking for a new challenge (flexible working arrangements supported).
Now it’s time to follow up on all the discussions – please do get in touch if we didn’t get to speak to you at any of the fairs, and you’d like to know more about how we support brands. If we did speak to you and you don’t hear from us in the next week or so, please feel free to give us a nudge – business cards do sometimes go astray in the madness of the fairs.
DHX First Steppers
We were excited to be able to announce the work Dr Gummer has been doing with DHX on their new preschool sector – First Steppers at the beginning of the year. First Steppers fills a gap between six months and two and a half years and unlocks fresh opportunities for manufacturers, licensees, retailers and consumers.
International Toy Research Association
Amanda recently had a chapter published in the latest journal from ITRA – Toys and Communication. The journal is a round-up of a recent conference and Dr Gummer’s research focused on Age Differences in the Use of Toys as Communication Tools. It explores the different ways in which toys facilitate communication opportunities as children grow and develop.
The next piece of research is being carried out on intergenerational play – Sharing the Joys of Play: An investigation into the role of toys in intergenerational play patterns – and will be presented at the Paris conference this summer.
Our New Associate
Our first US Associate joined the Network and we are delighted to welcome Deb de Sherbinin to the team. She is an expert in the US toy market and runs her own consultancy, Perkit.com.
We recently sponsored the Best Preschool STEM Range category at the successful Progressive Preschool Awards. It was a wonderful celebration of the preschool industry and the excellence of products available. We’re very glad we didn’t have to judge!
With lots of exciting plans for the next quarter and beyond, we’d love to talk to you about how you can get involved. Follow us on Twitter @FundamentallyHQ to keep up to date with what’s happening or get in touch with us firstname.lastname@example.org