July 2007 | Vol. VI - No. 7
This Issue's Highlights
What to Read in July
If you don't have time for the whole issue of TDmonthly, check out the companies specialty retailers say are fair, the newest toys for the holiday season and how to maximize your use of the Internet:
GOOD CO./BAD CO.
Which companies do other specialty toy retailers consider to be good partners? Toysmith, Schylling, Ravensburger, Folkmanis, Gund, HABA and Manhattan Toy all earned high marks.
Who causes headaches for toy- and gift-store owners? Ganz, Russ-Berrie and Ty garnered the most complaints, though the misery they caused was mitigated by the cash their toys earned.
Companies that most retailers loved and a few just plain didn't included the ubiquitous Melissa & Doug, International Playthings, RC2, Educational Insights, Small World Toys and Alex.
Find out why 129 retailers voted the way they did in Good Co./Bad Co.: Who's Fair to Specialty Stores, Who Makes You Burn? and Those Love/Hate Relationships.
HOLIDAY TOYS FOR SALE
Ready to buy for Q4? Find the latest Collectibles, Educational Toys, Card Games, Plush & Puppets, Ride-ons, Games, Novelties, Musical Toys, Dolls and Action Figures, and read what manufacturers said about their latest, hottest toys for 2007.
MAKING THE MOST OF THE WEB
A simple, professional website can help promote your store even when you're not there. Giving potential customers online access to your hours, location and specials can help them find their way to your store when they need it. And if you want to sell online, treat your website like a second store by carefully selecting merchandise, keeping it up to date and offering customer service.
Find out more in Retailing Tips: Promoting Online and Selling Online.
HOME SWEET HOME
Want to sell toys that are made in the U.S.A.? Maple Landmark Woodcraft, Channel Craft, Smethport Specialty, Teacup Tables, Baker Wood Marionettes, Dimensions, Rolli Rider, Ttalf, Fat Brain, Uncle's Puzzles and Secrist Doll Company all keep their factories close at hand. Find out why they do it ... and how ... in Making It in the USA.
SELLING TO BIG KIDS
Are your littlest customers too big for toys? You might try selling to their parents, instead. Read how retailers across the country are exploiting the niche of grown-ups who don't want to grow up in Toys for the Old Folks.
FRIENDS FOR SALE
New technology is making toys more lifelike than ever. If manufacturers have their way, the next generation of dolls, plush and games will be able to respond to your emotions and even read your mind. Find out how in Toys That Feel Your Pain.
TOYS SHOW OFF FOR YOU
Get your own personal, in-house toy demos by watching TDmonthly! This month, we bring you eight new video toy demos. Find out whether a Solar Robot's hot ... or not ... in TDmonthly's ToyTV.
NEWEST, COOLEST TOYS
Following are a few of our favorites from the hundreds of toys we uploaded this month, but you can find the rest in TDmonthly's July Staff Picks.
The Blues are the first addition to the award-winning Dado Cubes line. Dado Cubes combine art and science as players explore architectural principles — proportion, balance, structure and color. A new twist on classic building blocks, Dado Cubes engage the imagination as the slits on each cube are interlocked to create an unlimited number of three-dimensional structures. Each set features 10 cubes, scaled from 1” to 5”, capable of building structures over 32” high. They are made of durable, heavy-gauge plastic and were developed, manufactured and assembled in the U.S.A. Dado Cubes have been honored with numerous awards, including Dr. Toy's Spring 2007 Best Product Award and a Spring 2007 National Parenting Center Seal of Approval. Launch date: May 2007.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 13304 (added 6/7/2007)
Sigikid's organic line, the Natural Friends, has received new additions this year. Meet the frog family, comprising snugglies, music boxes, rattles and play figures. They are made of organic cotton and are filled with organic lamb's wool. The plush are suitable for newborns and up.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 13174 (added 5/29/2007)
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Writer's Bio: ALISON MAREK is an award-winning writer, director and cartoonist whose work has been published by Fairchild Publications and DC Comics (Piranha Press), broadcast on Showtime and other cable networks, and viewed worldwide in film festivals. See her short films and print work on www.alisonmarek.com. Watch her nefarious villains in the web series www.MuggsMovers.com. Get inspired by her cartoons "Daily ARFFirmations to Unleash Your Inner Fido" at www.ARFFirmations.com. Phew! And then ... Read more articles by this author
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