Mega Brands jet-propels kid creativity and activism with new website and viral campaign
Mega Brands taps into the hot-button issue of couch potato kids by aligning the brand with independent thought, creativity and kid power - tapping the social and viral media scene to establish a use-your-mind social strategy for the Lego contender.
While rival toymaker Lego promotes its Bionicals with passivity-inducing videos, Montreal-based Mega Brands is positioning its toys as imagination boosters – and itself at the forefront of the movement to promote more imaginative play and independent thinking among children.
The latest example of this strategy in action, says StrawberryFrog founder/CEO Scott Goodson, is the KidsGetIt.com website and viral campaign his NYC-based agency created for Mega Brands’ Mega Bloks products, and launched last Friday. What’s arguably the most surprising part of what’s going on at the website is pint-sized reporters grilling UN reps, Washington pols and Harvard eggheads. ‘Kids are asking the smartest people out there how we’re going to solve all the big problems in the world,’ he says.
The target demo for this initiative, Goodson tells MiC, is mothers, children and retailers, and hopes were high that the lively, kid-savvy website would catch on. But even he was flabbergasted by the more than 350,000 unique visits kidsgetit.com has attracted over the past foure days. ‘There’s also a great deal more untrackable experiences through peer to peer and other content sites like milkandcookies.com and buzzfeed.com, as well as a lot of coverage on parent blogs and parent-oriented websites,’ he adds. ‘We also can follow the pass-on dialogue. As people send the content to friends, we can chart their added words. Example: ‘We’re going to have to get our kids off the computer games.”
No advertising heralded the arrival of kidsgetit.com. Instead, says Goodson, a viral spotlight is being shone on it ‘through blogs, RSS feeds and cultural shaping sites, plus sites geared to parents.’ The effort was built on the solid ground of extensive research. ‘We’ve done some very revealing ethnography groups with mothers across North America and some very interesting trends are surfacing,’ he explains. ‘Moms – or as we call them, ‘mega moms’ – are very connected with other engaged parents in online communities and peer-to-peer spaces. They love to pass on brands and initiatives which fulfill their values.
‘(Mothers) are gate keepers of the home in an increasingly more difficult environment for controlling their kids, due to new technologies and lack of time,’ Goodson concludes. ‘Mega Brands and its Mega Blocks, Rose Art and other brands stand for creativity in the home, for imagination and free play – and against the pressures that force kids into very structured lives and being adults too early.’