Time for kiddy companies to use adult formats


Mattel and Burger King are no strangers to the preteen market and no doubt have a great deal of experience marketing their wares to the elementary school demo. But both, for entirely different reasons, may wish to make a push to get their message in front of adults.

In Mattel’s case, it has suffered a rash of product recalls linked to manufacturing operations in China. It got to the point that Mattel CEO found himself testifying before the Senate Appropriations Committee. Eckert said that his company is not perfect, but that it is certainly capable of changing both its own standards and those of the toy industry in general. Jerry Storch of Toys R Us also spoke at the hearing, underscoring that consumers must trust the safety of the products one makes and the other vends. The toy industry in general and Mattel in particular may be wise to use the media to inform adults on measures taken to guarantee the quality and safety of these products.

On the other side of the coin, Burger King is putting out a new children’s menu which will turn a nutritional negative into a positive. It will be offering flame-broiled (rather than fried) chicken, along with organic unsweetened applesauce and low fat milk, and has a revolutionary new product in the pipeline it calls BK Fresh Apple Fries. These are cold peeled apple sticks cut to resemble fries and served in a typical fast food french fry container. Burger King would be very smart indeed to make sure parents are as aware of these new items as children will be.