Barbie marketing project

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Marketing project

attel Inc. is an American enterprise specialized in toys and games. Harold Mattson and Elliot Handler created it in 1945 and now, it is a global leader in his sector. Mattel is a compound name. It’s formed by « Matt » of Mattson and « El » for Elliot.

Mattel possesses in particular brands like American Girl, Barbie, Big Jim, Fisher-Price, Hot Wheels, Magic8 Ball, Matchbox and Polly Pocket. Mattel also publish games like Othello, Scrabble and Uno.
It also commercializes games and toys under license Warner (Batman, Justice League, Looney Tunes), Disney, Jim Henson (Bear in the Big Blue House, Sesame Street), Harry Potter and Nickelodeon.

The first Mattel products are pictures – frames, but Elliot soon develops a side business in dollhousefurniture made from picture frame scraps. Matson soon sells out to his partner, and, encouraged by the success of the doll furniture, the Handlers turned the company’s emphasis to toys.
Followed are the main points about Mattel’s history.

* In fact in 1955 Mattel meets the “Mickey Mouse Club”
* And in 1959, Barbie™ doll makes her debut. Few years later, in 1960 Mattel becomes a publiclyowned company. And in 1961 Ken™ doll joins Barbie™ doll.
* In 1965 Mattel diversified a bit their sector, indeed, it enters the educational preschool market with See’ N Say® talking toy.
* 1987: Mattel develops a strategy for maximizing core brands.
* In 1991 it acquires Aviva Sports, Inc., a sport-toys-maker.
* 1993: Fisher-Price® joins the Mattel family.
* In 2000 Mattel isgranted the licensing agreement for Harry Potter

Mattel has known a successful history and it is already right today.

I) The Situation analysis

A) The environment

We have to select the most important environments which influence very much Barbie’s company in its activity.
About the environments which aren’t so important to analyze for this case, we can say that:
* Firstly,neither the French government nor other political parties has a power in toys’ market nowadays. And there aren’t legal forces which restrict many the toys’ activity.
* And secondly, the sophistication of technologies isn’t an important factor because it’s only permitting the production of more supplies while buyers aren’t increasing.

About cultural environment, we observe the usual “playingmummy” which is a game all the little girls play with dolls and it has always been this famous cultural game for many centuries. But nowadays, to attract clients, the diversification of dolls and the process of clothes’ trends are good working keys for profits. (Example: Bratz dolls).
Then, for economical environment, which is in a crisis period, we note that toys’ market isn’t as affected asother markets by the crisis because parents don’t want to forbid their children of the pleasure offered by toys. Moreover, dolls count for 13% of total toys’ spendings.
About natural environment, these days, brands are growing up thanks to organic cotton clothes; this new activity shows the implication of toys’ companies in the current ecology movement.
Finally, about the demographic environment:on January the 1st, 2008, 6 million children in France were from 3 to 11 years old. So toys’ market is a significant one. But dolls, if they are ameliorated, could target more than the 3-to-11-year-old-children.

B) The industry

* Rivalry among existing competitors

The Bild Lilli DollThe original Barbie. 1959

The Bild Lilli Doll was a German fashion doll created in 1955, based on a comic-strip character which inspired Ruth Handler when she invented the first Barbie in 1959.
Lilli was originally marketed to adults and was sold in bars and tobacco shops as a joke or gag gift. Thanks to her daughter Barbara, Handler realized that children preferred playing with dolls...
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