Influencer Collaborations Are Key to Success

The Toy Association’s Toy Fair New York welcomed a rise in influencer attendees this year, with more than 100 YouTubers, Instagrammers, and other social media personalities attending the February show.

“Influencers recognize the value of attending Toy Fair and are leveraging the show to announce partnerships with toy brands, unveil new toy lines, and forge relationships,” says Ken Seiter, executive vice president of marketing communications at The Toy Association.

This is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the important and evolving relationship between influencers and the toy industry, which is why The Toy Association is stepping up its year-round efforts to provide members with actionable information as they design and own their influencer strategy.

“What’s exciting about the influencer landscape is that there is something out there for every brand and budget,” Seiter adds. “As influencer marketing continues to evolve, there are so many opportunities for toy companies to promote their brands and connect with kids and families.”

  • The Toy Association designed the following resources and activities to help toy companies engage with influencers in a meaningful way.
  • The Toy Association recently held a webinar called “Beyond ‘Unboxing’: How to Get the Most Out of Influencer Marketing,” now available in the “Webinars” section of its website (toyassociation.org). The session explores a range of topics from how to find and choose appropriate influencers to partner with to how to design a successful influencer program.
  • Working with trendhunter.com, The Toy Association published a trend report that helps toy companies determine whether or not an influencer partnership makes sense for a brand. Available to download from toyassociation.org, the report covers influencers who appeal to millennial consumers, influencer subscription services, niche media platforms, and more.
  • A new initiative at Toy Fair Dallas (Oct. 2 to 4) helps exhibitors promote their brands with online influencers. During last year’s inaugural Blogger Breakfast, toy companies had a chance to give product demos and connect with local toy influencers in search of the hottest toys for the holiday season. Details about this year’s influencer activity will be announced at toyfairdallas.com.

The Toy Association will continue to track influencer trends and develop new activities and resources to help toy brands connect with the right audiences. Questions and comments on these initiatives should be directed to Adrienne Appell, senior director of strategic communications at The Toy Association (aappell@toyassociation.org).

As The Toy Association’s senior communications specialist, Kristin Morency Goldman leads the development of content for the Association’s print and online communications. Her articles on toy trends, toy safety, and industry news can be found in trade and consumer publications around the world. She holds a master’s degree in media, culture, and communications from NYU.

This article originally appeared in the May/June 2019 issue of the Toy Book.