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Does A Partnership with an Online Influencer Make Sense for Your Brand?’s latest free monthly report for Toy Association members provides fodder for toy companies to consider whether a partnership with an online influencer makes sense for their brand. 

“The report provides a better understanding of how online and social influencers are using their platforms for successful marketing and takes a deep dive into fresh ways influencers are producing content,” said Anne McConnell, senior director of market research & data strategy at The Toy Association. 

The following trends are highlighted in the report:

  • Artsy Influencer – Social media influencers are increasingly entering more traditional artistic spaces such as film, digital, and fashion. To appeal to the millennial consumer, H&M has announced a new clothing line called /Nyden, which will be designed in collaboration with various influencers from an assortment of disciplines.
  • Influencer Edu – Educational platforms that aim to offer advice and expertise about the growing area of influencer marketing are coming from the influencers themselves. The Yiwu Industrial & Commercial College in Yiwu, China offers young women the opportunity to become “the next big Chinese Internet stars.”
  • Niche Media – Media platforms like podcasts and online shows are connecting with consumer groups by incorporating tailored entertainment interests. Twitch, the online streaming platform best known for its live gaming channels, has launched FreshStock – a weekly program that covers the sneaker culture.
  • Immersive Podcast – Podcasts that include visual, social, or even physical enhancements to the podcast-listening experience are the result of increased appetite for entertainment that focuses on storytelling. “Deadly Manners,” a comedic murder mystery podcast that is styled like an old radio drama, is part of group of popular theatrical mystery podcasts. Celebrity voices that can be heard on the new podcast include Kristen Bell, Anna Chlumsky, Denis O’Hare, RuPaul, and narrations by LeVar Burton.
  • Influencer Subscription – Social media personalities and celebrities are becoming more accessible through subscription services – a business model that can invite more customer interaction with the products featured. Fabletics is a subscription service for affordable, yet high quality athletic-wear, created by actress Kate Hudson. Singer Demi Lovato’s 2017 Fabletics collaboration inspired women to love their bodies, featuring words like “confident” and “unbroken” written on items.
  • Micro-Trends – The report also calls out several micro-trends, including toys created by child influencers and personalized dolls created for influencers. In collaboration with YouTube sensation Ryan’s Toys Review, Bonkers Toys launched a new licensed toy line at New York Toy Fair called “Ryan’s World.” Last year, Tiana of Toys AndMe on YouTube received a one-of-a-kind customized doll from Mattel in the style of its Enchantimals line. After sharing her customized doll in an unboxing video, Tiana also shared a video of the newest Enchantimals. 

This value-added report is the latest in a series from the research company offering in-depth perspectives and trends in various areas related to the toy industry. For additional relevant trends, toy companies may click on the report’s consumer insights examples, scroll down, and click the images for further information. Members are encouraged to send topic suggestions for future trend reports to The Toy Association’s Anne McConnell.

Compliments of The Toy Association, a member of the EACCNY