In our time, kids brands can break through in a variety of ways, given that there is no distinction anymore between linear and digital platforms. In fact, this is what many brands, including us at Juana la Iguana are doing. But today, we are faced with a generation of kids that are more fickle than ever, presenting a set of challenges and… many exciting opportunities.
The first challenge is that we must create compelling content that immediately engages our kids, or we lose them in the process. As television content has migrated into the digital realm, viewing habits have changed. Children today are digitally-savvy, and they access content from their computers, mobile devices and Smart TVs everywhere, and at any time. This new generation of kids can multi-task! They can watch television, while simultaneously playing with toys, or devices, and search for information. They can watch online videos and do school work, all at the same time.
This presents us with many opportunities. Launching a brand should no longer be limited to a linear platform, but should occur on all platforms, in a variety of ways. Brands can capture an audience wherever they are.
The second challenge is that content no longer has a set format to follow, so we must be very creative when we communicate with our audience. They expect a different experience on multiple platforms, and we should cater to that. Today’s kids’ brands have numerous touchpoints to reach their audience: streaming platforms such as YouTube, Netflix or Hulu; tablets, phones, e-books, and even through live presentations, broadcast through platforms such as Facebook, Snapchat or Instagram.
The opportunity for a brand is that they are no longer reliant on linear TV – the platforms are opening up alternative routes. They can choose what distribution channels best fit their content and their products.
The third challenge is that kids’ brands must be very flexible and technologically savvy. Tastes and trends change rapidly, and brands must be ready to respond quickly and to challenge their set beliefs.
The incredible opportunity is that technology allows for experimentation in content creation at a fraction of the cost than in the past. It also allows for customisation to cater to different cultures. New technologies also afford brands immediate feedback. Knowing what the audiences like or dislike allows you to adapt accordingly.
And as kids viewing habits evolve, so must the retailer. The traditionally-held view that you must have a linear platform to launch toys must change. Today, the starting point for a brand can be anywhere. Angry Birds and Cut the Rope started in the mobile game space and other brands, like Shopkins, began on YouTube. Retailers buying decisions must evolve in a world of infinite choice as brands will continue to compete fiercely for their attention. Kids’ brands will always find their particular path to their audience and that is what we are doing here at Juana la Iguana. Rules no longer apply.
This is the latest in a series of posts from MIPCOM 2017’s MIPBlog Ambassadors, a group of industry experts coordinated by consultant Debbie Macdonald, who’ll be sharing their insight here in the run-up to MIPCOM this October. Stay tuned for more!