Movie Mom

Movie Mom


USA Today on New Techniques in Marketing to Kids

posted by Nell Minow

USA Today has an important article on new technologies for marketing to kids.

With the use of new, kid-enchanting technologies, are savvy marketers gaining the upper hand on parents? Are toy marketers such as Ganz, food marketers such as McDonald’s and kid-coddling apparel retailers such as 77kids by American Eagle too eager to target kids?

At stake: $1.12 trillion. That’s the amount that kids influenced last year in overall family spending, says James McNeal, a kid marketing consultant and author of Kids as Consumers: A Handbook of Marketing to Children. “Up to age 16, kids are determining most expenditures in the household,” he says. “This is very attractive to marketers.”

Children who play on websites like Webkinz are bombarded by ads.  The article follows one girl who repeatedly clicks on an ad for Judy Moody and the NOT Bummer Summer, not because she has any interest in the film but because clicking on the link is the way she earns accessories for her virtual characters.

“We occasionally introduce limited-time promotions so that our Webkinz World members can enjoy fun, unique activities and events,” says Susan McVeigh, a Ganz spokeswoman.

That corporate doublespeak is appalling.  The purpose of these “limited-time promotions” is so that children can be targeted for ads, and this is all within the context of a site that is itself an enormous interactive ad for Ganz.  Parents should be aware of the new avenues for trying to sell to kids and should have continuing conversations with children and tweens about the way that marketing is designed to make them think they want things that are not really important.  Or, in the case of the “Judy Moody” movie, to see movies that ARE a bummer.



  • Pingback: Jewish Movies for Everyone | Christian Media Cross

  • http://AddaURLtothiscomment cx

    And thanks to conservatives on our Supreme Court, those corporations are “citizens” now, with the same (or better) rights to free speech normal humans have.

    Except they can freely lie, dissemble, mislead (or any other way you wish to phrase it) to your children, and to you. Give us another Republican president, and it may be illegal to lie to our corporate leaders.

    The good news is it’s not as bad as it will be in the future, when those companies, and others, get even more desperate to get their hands on your money, as the share of money that workers have continues to decrease, and the rich keep their children away from those sites.

  • Pingback: Contest: Conan! | Christian Media Cross

Previous Posts

Does PG-13 Mean Anything Anymore?
The Washington Post has an article about a new report from the American Academy of Pediatrics, "Parental Desensitization to Violence and Sex in Movies," with some disturbing conclusions about parents' ability to make good decisions about the impact some media may have on their children. This is not

posted 8:00:58am Oct. 25, 2014 | read full post »

Is E-Reading to Kids the Same as Analog Reading?
The New York Times asks, Is E-Reading to Your Toddler Story Time, or Simply Screen Time? In a 2013 study, researchers found that children ages 3 to 5 whose parents read to them from an electronic book had lower reading comprehension than children whose parents used traditional books. Part of th

posted 8:00:40am Oct. 25, 2014 | read full post »

Interview: Todd and Jedd Wider about the Bullying Documentary "Mentor"
Producers Todd and Jedd Wider generously took time to answer my questions about their documentary, "Mentor," the story of two teenagers who committed suicide following relentless bullying. The film, which received Honorable Mention for Best Documentary Feature at the 2014 Woodstock Film Festival th

posted 3:56:57pm Oct. 24, 2014 | read full post »

Clip: Tinkerbell and the Legend of the NeverBeast
[iframe width="560" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/ApzHJhZz2JQ" frameborder="0"] The latest in Disney's animated Tinkerbell series adds Ginnifer Goodwin to the cast. Coming in March of 2015, it explores the ancient myth of a mysterious creature whose distant roar sparks the curiosity

posted 1:23:59pm Oct. 24, 2014 | read full post »

Interview: "Avatar" Villain Stephen Lang on Playing a Good Guy Coach in "23 Blast"
Stephen Lang is best known for playing the villain in "Avatar." But in "23 Blast," based on the real-life story of Travis Freeman, a high school football player who lost his vision but stayed on the team, Lang plays a good guy, the coach who encouraged and supported him. I talked to Lang about actin

posted 5:56:30am Oct. 24, 2014 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.