In a new series of articles, ‘Meet the Associate’, we will be talking in more depth with each member of the Fundamentally Children Associates Network.
Our inaugural article is with Trudi Bishop, Director of Bee Licensing.
You can find out more about the Associates Network here.
Over to Trudi…
Could you tell us a bit about your background in children’s industries and how you got to where you are now?
I have worked across many different children’s industries starting in children’s footwear, at Ecco and Hush Puppies shoes, then golf products at Callaway. I then worked as the head of product marketing for EMEA at LeapFrog toys, then head of licensing and marketing at Cartamundi.
Most of my roles have been in product development/marketing, trade marketing and licensing. I am a big kid at heart so any role in the children’s industry was always a bonus for me.
Could you tell us a bit about your current role?
I now own my own licensing and product marketing consultancy and started this to fit in with my personal life so I can maximise my time spent with my adopted son while it counts most.
What services can you provide to Fundamentally Children’s clients as an associate?
Bee Licensing is there to help guide brands who are new or thinking about entering the exciting brand licensing industry through the process, as well as helping to assess brands viability for licensing in or out. We are here to provide an honest, upfront guide, as well as to help provide connections within the licensing industry.
We are also experts at assessing product ranges to make them more commercial – sometimes the hard conversations are easier to have with someone outside your business…
What’s the best thing about working in the children’s industries?
(Here’s Trudi consulting the Justice League)
Having an excuse to watch kids cartoons and play with toys. It’s all research you know…
And the worst?
Sometimes the kids industry can take itself too seriously and forget who they are there to entertain and delight on a daily basis – the kids.
We all need to remember the benefits and joy we get from play and being a kid.
What’s your favourite industry event and why?
I love BLE for the connections, and being on point across multiple aspects of the kids industry. And the character parade is just the best!
If you didn’t work in your current role, what would you like to be doing and why?
Ooh, in a very different world I’d probably own a café by the beach back home in NZ and have bee hives.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given from someone in the children’s industries?
“Remember it’s a toy, not life and death”. In other words, don’t take it all too seriously…
What’s your all-time favourite children’s toy or app?
A hard one, as a kid my absolutely favourite toy was Smurfs but you can’t beat a nice cuddly teddy bear.