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Toys Consumer Insights

AI Board Game
Artificial intelligence is being employed in tabletop game experience design
Trend - Technology is enhancing the player experience during chess and other popular board game offerings. By integrating artificial intelligence into tabletop game designs, brands are able to also provide training to consumers.

Insight - Contemporary consumers are becoming increasingly comfortable and open to using technology in their daily and work routines, as well as for entertainment and in other facets of their lifestyle. As tech becomes more accessible to a larger portion of the population, individuals will look to satisfy their curiosity by testing out novelty tech-powered versions of products that they are familiar with.
Workshop Question - How can your brand utilize artificial intelligence?
8
Score
Popularity
Activity
Freshness
Patterns
Megatrends
Storytelling Toy
Children's toy brands offer interactive, creative forms of storytelling
Trend - Storytelling for children is becoming more interactive, with toys that offer creative forms of expression and methods of telling children stories. These items include everything from mixing physical toys with voice-controlled tech, to QR codes attached to toys that retell their backgrounds.

Insight - The use of smart or interactive tech in children's development remains popular, particularly among Millennial parents who see technology as an opportunity to develop children's technical and creative skills from a young age. Straying from more traditional approaches to child-rearing in this way helps give children the skills they'll need in a world that's dominated by tech in both work and play.
Workshop Question - How could your brand prioritize educational recreation for children?
7
Score
Popularity
Activity
Freshness
Patterns
Megatrends
Adult Gamification
Games geared to adults become more "quarantine-friendly"
Trend - Brands that specialize in adult gaming platforms and products are offering new or revamped versions of their products as they try to encourage adults to stay inside, and keep them entertained while doing so.

Insight - As consumers around the world are now practicing physical distancing and spending the majority of their time at home, there is a higher demand for home-based entertainment like streaming platforms, games, and more. This comes as consumers try to cope with some of the more manageable consequences of physical distancing--boredom and a lack of stimulation.
Workshop Question - How is your brand providing relief or support for individuals affected by COVID-19?
5.9
Score
Popularity
Activity
Freshness
Patterns
Megatrends
Gamified Stay-at-Home
To ease social distancing for kids, brands are launching & updating games
Trend - The COVID-19 pandemic has forced social distancing measures on many communities and brands are responding to the need to stay at home with enhanced gaming experiences for consumers. Typically geared toward kids, these games and activities help pass time, often in ways that are educational.

Insight - The need to socially distance and stay at home can be especially hard on kids who have a tendency to be restless when they feel bored and under-stimulated. Since this may be distracting to working parents, solutions that can effectively entertain a child during the pandemic are being prioritized. Parent are seeking out offerings that are accessible and don't require much supervision, with an emphasis on activities that inform children on the importance of social distancing.
Workshop Question - How might you gamify the stay-at-home experience?
6.9
Score
Popularity
Activity
Freshness
Patterns
Megatrends
Updated Plush
Brands are launching plush toys with tech features to enhance the sleep routine
Trend - Brands are creating updated versions of the traditional plush toy to enhance the sleep routine of children. These new features are implemented either as interactive elements or as health trackers, allowing the tech-savvy innovations to bring something else to the table in addition to bedside companionship.

Insight - Millennial parents are open to technology when it comes to raising their children and as a result, many opt-in for a hybrid tactic that pairs traditional upbringings with tech-powered features. As a result, many parents and their children are enjoying an added benefit that extends to convenience, accessibility, cost, and even education.
Workshop Question - How might your brand balance the traditional and the digital in your product/service?
5.9
Score
Popularity
Activity
Freshness
Patterns
Megatrends
Montessori Tech
Brands use classic learning methods to teach various tech concepts to children
Trend - The Montessori method is a research-backed educational approach that encourages early childhood development through self-directed, hands-on activities and collaborative play. Brands are combining this trusted method of education with tech-forward concepts to create a balanced learning experience that is also age-appropriate.

Insight - The modern digital age necessitates the development of new skills and parents are looking to give their children a head start with products that are educational and encourage creativity. This opens up space for innovations that balance the digital and the physical, allowing youth to experience both worlds simultaneously and to learn to differentiate between them from an early age—a tactic that will be useful for them later in their lives.
Workshop Question - How could your brand balance between traditional approaches and digital environments?
7.8
Score
Popularity
Activity
Freshness
Patterns
Megatrends
Solar Toy
Solar-powered children's toys offer a deeper understanding of eco-conscious play
Trend - With both STEM-related and eco-friendly products targeted to kids being increasingly popular, these two trends are merging in the form of solar-powered children's toys. These products reduce the ecological impact of toys, while also giving children fundamental knowledge on how solar power works.

Insight - Even more than preceding generations, Gen Z will have to deal with the impacts of climate change–in both how it personally affects them and in the careers they choose to explore as they seek to counter environmental damage. This unfortunate fact has resulted in a growing push to teach children about sustainable solutions from a young age–imparting fundamental knowledge that could one day be crucial for the survival of future generations.
Workshop Question - How could your brand take prioritize accountability for how it's impacting the environment?
4.1
Score
Popularity
Activity
Freshness
Patterns
Megatrends
DIY Play
Kids’ toys incorporate more custom, DIY features to encourage engagement
Trend - Toy brands are turning to DIY elements to make playtime more interactive and educational. Transforming traditional activities or games into experiences, brands are utilizing do-it-yourself elements to make games more challenging and teach kids about empowerment at the same time.

Insight - Millennial parents are exploring ways for their kids to practice creative expression to stimulate their minds in dynamic ways. Due to an increasingly diversified (and tech-driven) job market, Millennials see the value in helping their children build a strong creative skill set to prepare for future employment. Play that is interactive and expressive is thus seen as skill development.
Workshop Question - In what ways could you incorporate DIY features into core products? How can you help make your consumer feel more empowered?
5.7
Score
Popularity
Activity
Freshness
Patterns
Megatrends
Playoff Activation
Brands take advantage of sports fandom with localized ad campaigns
Trend - Creating ties to current events, brands, typically outside the sports and athletic field, are jumping in to showcase support and loyalty for regional sports teams. Strategically releasing ads around playoffs and championship finals, brands are aiming to showcase pride and support for local teams through everything from referencing star players to highlighting local fan engagement.

Insight - Consumers connect with businesses that are values-driven and purposefully contribute to their community. One of the most effective ways to showcase values is through taking on a ‘corporate citizen’ role, where an organization takes action to help their specific region. This makes consumers value the shared connections between their community and the brands that contribute to it.
Workshop Question - In what ways can your brand create more authentic connections with your consumers? What localized strategies could you employ?
5.7
Score
Popularity
Activity
Freshness
Patterns
Megatrends
Voiced Playtime
Toys integrate voice technology for interactive, educational entertainment
Trend - With the rapid growth of voice technology being integrated into many aspects of consumers' lives, voice-activated technology is now being introduced to children through toys. By incorporating these features with toys already familiar to kids, brands are helping younger consumers adapt to this developing technology that's quickly becoming ubiquitous.

Insight - Voice-integrated technologies are common enough today that many North American children are being raised with them in their homes. This interactive tech makes everything from day-to-day routines to entertainment more convenient, and this draws in consumers looking for simple ways to streamline their daily routines. This shift extends to all generations--whether they're children or adults.
Workshop Question - Consider how your brand could leverage voice technology to create an engaging experience for your consumer.
4.6
Score
Popularity
Activity
Freshness
Patterns
Megatrends