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Kids and teens are playing with individualism

Updated: Aug 3, 2020

A third of UK (33%) and US (32%) kids aged 7-14 have played with toys in the past week- given the age range this may feel surprising?

A huge upsurge in video chats has played a role, as kids look for shared interests and experiences to connect with friends. Whilst on a video call, nearly a quarter (23%) have played with LEGO and 1 in 10 have played with action figures, dolls or toy vehicles.

But this behaviour is not just a knee jerk reaction to coronavirus crisis - more importantly it’s reflective of key generational traits.

Our continual research has clearly identified that Gen Alpha and Z want to hack, discover or stumble upon ideas, information and entertainment for themselves. They’re self-curators, which can mean that they have very idiosyncratic tastes and are more likely to try things out compared to previous generations.

Having a vast digital world at their fingertips also means they have more access to different cultural influences. Despite their age differences, Gen Alpha and Gen Z are both eclectic in their tastes and will form, project and take pride in social identities on the basis of their own feelings, thoughts and interests.

YouTube is the dominant way that kids are hearing about new toys/games (49%) but their appeal spreads across multiple platforms. TikToker @barbieboymaiderson from Brazil has 1.8million followers who watch his daily videos of makeovers with Barbie and Ken dolls and to date there have been 1.5 billion views of videos using #LEGO on the video platform.

This leaning towards curiosity, freedom and discovery has encouraged a generation who has redefined what it means to be ‘normal’. They have huge enthusiasm for ‘mass individualism’ and judge people on who they are and what they do rather than ‘what’ they are.

This offers a huge opportunity for brands. This generation seeks new discoveries and brands should be tapping into this innate desire by developing products that truly encourage hacking, individual choice and creativity.

Want to know more? Get in touch, we’re here to help.


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