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Brand View Christmas Toy Tracker 2017: TRA DreamToys 2017

By Chris Elliott

Retailers are beginning to ramp up the marketing of their toy offerings as Christmas approaches. Black Friday returns later this week presenting retailers with an opportunity to boost sales through toy promotions. This year, retailers started promoting these deals earlier than previous years with some retailers featuring banners on their website ten days before Black Friday.

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Smyths Toys website 17 November 2017

As this promotion is going on, Hasbro have been in talks to acquire Mattel which would bring together two of the largest toy manufacturers in the world, although Mattel have rebuffed Hasbro’s latest approach.

The two companies make up five of the ten products in the Hamleys top 10 Christmas toys, three Hasbro and two Mattel, and five of the twelve products in the recently released Toys Retailers Association (TRA) DreamToys for Christmas, four Hasbro and one Mattel.

Toy Retailers Association Top 12 Christmas Toys

Like the Hamleys basket, Brand View will be tracking the pricing and promotion of the TRA top 12 Christmas toys throughout November and December. The TRA top Christmas toys shared five products with the Hamleys basket: FurReal Friends Roarin’ Tyler The Playful Tiger, Hatchimals Surprise Giraven, LEGO Star Wars BB-8, Nerf Nitro Longshot Smash and the PJ Masks Headquarters Playset.

As with the Hamleys basket last month, Amazon had the lowest prices, joint and sole, of the retailers analysed. Of the 12 products, Amazon had the lowest price on ten products, eight jointly and two solely.

Of the remaining two products, Argos, Smyths Toys and Toys ‘R’ Us had the joint lowest price for the L.O.L Surprise! Tots Ball Series 2 and Tesco Direct had the sole lowest price for the PJ Masks Headquarters Playset.

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Brand View Daily Prices & Promotions 15 November 2017

We have reviewed the level of promotion in the toy category since 1 October. All seven of the retailers analysed had a greater percentage of its toy range on promotion at the end of the period than at the start. Amazon was not included in this analysis as it does not promote.

Very had the most obvious uplift in promotions from 26.3 percent at the start of the period to 67.4 percent at the end. Tesco Direct made the most recent significant promotion push. On 17 November 2017, its percentage of range on promotion moved from 9.2 percent to 58.5 percent as it introduced a significant number of 3 for 2 promotions on its toy range.

Brand View broke down each retailer’s promotions by the promotional mechanic to see which retailers favoured multi-buy promotions.

Tesco Direct’s significant 3 for 2 promotion, identified above, was clear to see both at the end of the period and between 27 and 30 October. The Toy Shop (The Entertainer) and Very used only save amount promotions throughout the period.

John Lewis also did not use any multi-buy promotions although it had a significant number of Other Promotional mechanics, these were largely exclusives to John Lewis and online exclusives.

Argos and Smyths Toys both reduced their focus on multi-buy promotions throughout the period instead using more save amount promotions.

Some retailers have already run promotional pushes on the toy category, however, with Black Friday approaching we can expect an even greater push as the week goes. Look out for our analysis of Black Friday toy promotions next week.

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