TDmonthly Magazine will bring you on-site coverage from the exhibit halls of the 2010 American International Toy Fair in New York City Feb. 14-17. Bookmark TDmonthly.com to find daily updates with new product highlights, photos, buyer impressions and more. And in the meantime, check out the "green" focus of this year's show — it's more than just the products!
ROUNDING OUT THE CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE
Many toy stores start with a brick-and-mortar foundation, then expand their business online. But Roundtable Toys of Winterville, N.C., did things the other way around, opening a retail location just last fall after more than a decade of selling toys on the Net. What's the secret to the store's success? Customer experience, whether in the form of in-store boutiques or social networking tie-ins online, makes all the difference, Owner David Davis told TDmonthly. Read more about the Roundtable Toys biz, including its approach to analyzing and managing inventory, in TDmonthly's Retailer Spotlight.
TOY VIDEOS FOR YOUR STORE
When a photo doesn't cut it ... get up-close and personal to the products you're considering for your store, with TDmonthly's product demo videos. "February's Toy Videos Are All Heart" and an additional article show you everything from the crazy popular Animal Rubber Bands and an awkward cricket to Cloud b's Twilight Ladybug and fun bath squirties. You can even broadcast the videos (for free) from your own website, to show customers how the toys play.
If you've got the time, browse the full spectrum of products recently added to TDmonthly via our Notable & New Toys articles, featuring more than 100 categories! Or, see our condensed Staff Picks (previewed below) with items we think specialty toy-store owners should take a glance at.
DINGaRING characters like Craig Crocodilel feature old-school craftsmanship and good quality materials. All are safe and non-toxic, with wooden rings and internal rattles, designed to serve as an interactive toy for ages 0 and up. Each toy comes with its own introduction swing tag and unique backer card which allows it to be free-stand, hung or laid flat, for various display options.
Flipoutz™ are bracelets you can wear and personalize with Flipoutz™ coins. Trade your coins with friends and other Flipouterz. Set up your profile online and tell everyone about yourself and your coins while also tracking traded coins as they are traded from one person to the next. The Flipoutz™ Super Starter Kit includes a bracelet of your choice, a random coin, and two random 2-coin packs (making a total of 5 coins to fill up the bracelet).
Deborah Zemke has shown how to make fun, easy, and personality-filled doodles with her books D Is for Doodle, Doodle a Zoodle, 2 Is for Toucan, and Doodles to Go. Now children can doodle at mealtimes with these placemats, featuring 36 doodles from her books. Bound together as a pad—so there's always another placemat ready when one has been used—this set makes the perfect gift and will liven up dinners at home and in restaurants, picnics, and birthday parties.