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What’ll Be Hot for the Holidays?
By Hollie Bethany

With the holiday sales season well in mind, many of us at ToyDirectory Monthly Magazine are scanning the horizon for this year’s Gotta Have.  But we have to admit, we’re as stumped as anyone. 

True, a good quality product sells itself through word of mouth, but to examine how a genuine frenzy develops we’ve asked one of our industry writers to describe the road to Gotta Have-ness.

Oh, and just for fun, we asked several retailers to predict what they thought would be hot at the holidays.  There was nothing even close to a majority of opinion, but their often amusing answers are below.
Holiday Retailer Survey

How Does a Toy Become a Gotta Have?


There’s not just one factor in making a toy the next "gotta have". Using several different techniques, manufacturers can make their toy number one in what seems like a short time. But in actuality, there is a long planning stage leading up to the boom, and it all begins with publicity. 

And the winner is…

One of the least expensive options for generating publicity about a new product or re-launch is toy awards contests.  The judging for toy awards differs with each contest. For credibility, I tend to favor those that include kids in the testing/judging process. Some awards allow the kids to have input in rating, while some have parents and teachers judging based on toy use by the children, and stand-alone quality evaluation.  

Each award has its specific criteria for judging. The more comprehensive the criteria, the better chance that the toys chosen as overall winners will meet or exceed real-life expectations. When the awards are made, press releases to local and national media let the public know not only the outcome of the competition, but also that the toy is on the market.  Award ceremonies are also designed to generate maximum media coverage. (cont.)


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