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Barbie Benefitted from a Digital Boost

As we’ve seen here, some brands that had been waning over the past generation were actually boosted by the pandemic. One of the surprises in this category was the Barbie brand from Mattel.

Even with toy stores closed for months during lockdown, Mattel’s e-commerce sale surged by 50% in the third quarter of 2020. As reported in The Drum, the renewed interest in Barbie revamped for the present generation combined with a digital strategy was the perfect combination to appeal to children seeking an outlet when stuck at home.

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The brand ramped up its efforts on digital by expanding its video content. That includes YouTube, where Barbie plays the role of a social media influencer with makeup tutorials and Netflix films in which she stars.

“We saw kids starting to rapidly consume this content, so we had to rethink everything,” Lisa McKnight, senior vice-president and global head of Barbie and dolls for Mattel, told The Drum.

The Drum reports that Barbie’s gaming app, Dream House Adventures, surpassed 71m downloads this year. Mattel is also bringing the doll to life by working on an “integration with Alexa that lets kids ‘speak’ to Barbie and explore her many careers on the Echo device.”

But it’s not just about more products and content but personalized digital marketing. As McKnight explained, “We’re investing in a lot of up-the-funnel marketing and listening to the trends to make sure we’re serving up the right products to customers.”

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