Even with the rumors of the new administration considering yet another stimulus package to help increase consumer spending, it will take more than a Christmas bonus from the government to get consumers to open up their wallets this holiday season. Consumers are focusing on the “biggest bang for your buck” concept this holiday season; the retail industry is in a tight position of supplying the consumer’s demands, while also turning a profit.
Which brands will find the perfect balance of entertainment and economic value? A few key concepts that some companies have tapped in to are good indicators of just what consumers will be interested in this year.
The interactive entertainment industry has so far been largely unaffected by the global economy problems. Companies like Nintendo have targeted the “casual gamer” audience with their gaming consoles. For the third straight year, Nintendo is warning consumers that production has been increased, but will most likely still not meet the incredible demand. And with a new handheld console rolling out in Japan, to go worldwide starting early next year, Nintendo is in an enviable position right now for the holidays.
Disney has found a different tact, of utilizing their powerhouse brands. Disney characters that are currently most popular, like Hannah Montana, High School Musical, and Wall*E are strategically positioned in the retail market to attract both younger kids and teenagers with interactive products. Some of which can even be combined with online games and websites, via special codes that come with the in-store toys. By creating multi-platform toys, Disney can target the children with familiar brands, and reach the parents through the increased entertainment and replay value. A win-win situation for all.
The price tag may be the deciding factor for consumers this year, but brand positioning and marketing will be a very close second. Brands that can tap in to multiple consumer audiences, or multiple platforms will have a definite edge over competitors.