Executive Summary Barbie has become one of the best selling toy brands in the world helping Mattel become one of the largest toy makers. Mattel has had much success with it popular Barbie dolls for over fifty years. However it seems every product has a life cycle and in recent years Barbie has begun to decline in popularity due to recent technological trends and stiff competition. Today young girls have become more interested in mp3 players and ipods rather than playing with dolls. At home and abroad competitors are producing new doll with different characteristics that persuade consumers to purchase these products over Barbie.
Competitors have begun stealing significant market share away from Mattel who depends on Barbie for 20 percent of its annual sales. Abroad Mattel faces major obstetrical as its Barbie products are more standardized, while it competition has created a more localized product that better suites the needs of foreign consumers. Situation Analysis The Middle East Mattel has had some success in India by producing Barbie dolls adorned with a head spot and sari. Mattel still struggles to produce Barbie product that embraces ideology and appearances of the Middle East.
The brand image of Barbie, her characteristics and portrayed lifestyle, go against the morals and demeanor of religious and political standards that girls are taught to embrace in the region. Latin America Latin America was one of the first non-U. S. markets Barbie entered into. Barbie seemed to have success until its market share began to be overtaken by a competitor Estrela. Estrela is a Brazilian based company who created a much different looking doll called the Susi doll. The Susi doll looks much different than the Barbie, it has a small chest and waist, but wide thighs and dark skin, similar to Brazilian girls.
The Susi doll seems to be more attractive than the Barbie doll because girls are able to identify and see themselves in the doll. In addition, the Susi doll is sold at a much lower price than Barbie. Due to the extreme popularity of Susi in Brazil, Estrela has now began selling the doll in Chile, Argentia, Paraguay, and Uruaguy. Japan (Jeff) Internal Analysis Overall Strengths · Sold in more than a 150 countries · 60% of its annual revenue is in U. S. market · Best brand in the world, Mattel is world’s largest toy maker. Barbie has been around for more than 50 years · Huge success in Europe Overall Weaknesses · Inability to localize product in foreign markets · Negative portrayal of girls image · Over priced in accordance with competition and economy in many foreign markets · Popularity is declining in home and abroad , inability to keep up with trends or consumer needs/wants Implications Jarin) External Analysis The Middle East Opportunities · Create doll that relates to customs and culture Steal market share from Fulla Brand Threats · Fulla Brand introduced in 2003 embraces customs, morals, and appearance · Sara, Dora, and Laila-local competitor’s dolls that are patterned after customs and characteristics of natives. · Barbie is “forbidden by Islam” Objectives and Strategy Product: Dolls should reflect color and characteristics of culture. Mattel needs to change story or personification of Barbie to reflect values or attributes that are in accordance with political and religious standards.
Advertising: full color print ads displayed in shop windows. Direct Mail or newspaper inserts. Sales Promotion: Buy one doll and get some accessories for free. Consumer is able to choose Sari or different designs of head spots. Distribution: Dolls should be distributed in same locations as competition. Dolls should be located where children can easy access them and present to parents. Price Policy: Price of dolls should be simular to Fulla brand, or slightly higher. In order to keep perception of quality high , Barbie line’s price must be competitive.
Research: Face to Face interviews should be conducted to determine whether or not brand image would improve with new attributes and styles, prototypes or images of dolls could be displayed. Latin America Opportunities In Brazil alone dolls account for 37 percent of the country’s annual $430 million in toy sales. Make a Barbie doll that has similar features to the Susi doll. Lower price and similar physical features. Threats Susi doll manufactured by Estrela, is cheaper than Barbie Susi has realistic Brazilian features depicting girls as they are and not how they want to be when they grow up. Blonde Hair, Small Chest, Wide Thighs, and Dark Skin) Estrela is beginning to cut in to Mattel’s markets share with the Susi doll Due to the popularity of the Susi doll has been released in Chile, Argentina, Paraguay, and Uruguay. Implications Mattel is not meeting the consumer’s wants with it Barbie doll. Mattel has made the mistake of being ethnocentric in creating a standardized product. Stiff competition from the Susi doll is stealing market share from Mattel because it is able to meet the consumers needs and wants better than the Americanized Barbie doll.
Mattel needs to create a more localized product to regain its sliding market share. Objectives and Strategy Product: Mattel should develop a new lower end doll under a new name, and give it similar characteristics to the Susi doll. By do so the new doll will be able to compete better with the popular Susi doll. Mattel should also continue selling the Barbie doll as there is still a market for it. In addition, by not calling the new lower end doll by the Barbie name, there will be less risk of damaging the consumers perception of the existing Barbie doll as being a superior product.
Advertising: Advertising needs to be focused on radio, T. V. , and billboards due to the fact that mail may be unreliable in many areas in Latin America. Advertisements should be created that make the consumer aware of the new lower end doll and should persude the consumer to take action and purchase the product. Sales Promotion: A coupon could be placed inside of the packaging of the new lower end dolls giving the consumer 50% off the purchase of another doll. Distribution: The Barbie doll should try to be sold in upscale retail stores and malls(if they exist).
The new lower end doll should be sold in retail stores and local markets. Price Policy: The Barbie doll should stay at a high price to give the consumer the perception of a superior product, however the new doll should be price much lower. The new doll should be priced similarly to the Susi doll. Research: Before creating a new doll research needs to be done to see what exact characteristic girls need to see in a doll to want to purchase it. If it is legal focus groups could be held to help design and choose possible prototype dolls. Japan
Opportunities · World’s second largest toy market · Japan toy market is worth $8 billion · video/computer games · Flavas doll line · Better technology and more ways to build brand awareness Threats · Bratz line of dolls · In 2003 Barbie’s share of fashion doll market dropped from 85% to 70% · “cooler” lines of dolls are being established Implications (Jeff) Objectives and Strategy(Jeff) Product Advertising Sales Promotion Distribution Price Policy Research Overall Recommendations
In order for Mattel to regain its market share in its foreign markets it needs to create a more localized product in each market that meets the desires of its foreign consumers. Different consumers in different countries have different tastes. Barbie is sold in more than 150 countries. In the countries where Barbie is not selling well, Mattel needs to hire local experts in their perspective toy industry, have them team up with the marketing personnel from Mattel, and develop new products or change certain characteristics of the Barbie doll to make it more attractive to the foreign consumer.
Below is our old out line Pages 143 – 145 in your textbook have all the information you need (and all you are allowed to reference) to determine how to market Barbie to the following regions: Also we need external analysis for each region after which we state Objectives, Strategy and specific Marketing Tactics for each market, and we need to impliment a SWOT analysis too. 1) The Middle East (Jarin) Strengths 2) Latin America Strengths Latin America is one of the first non-US market Mattel entered Weaknesses
Barbie is over priced Barbie is lacking an authentic Latin American look. Barbie doll created to help girls fanaticize about growing up. Opportunities In Brazil alone dolls account for 37 percent of the country’s annual $430 million in toy sales. Make a Barbie doll that has similar features to the Susi doll. Threats Susi doll manufactured by Estrela, is cheaper than Barbie Susi has realistic Brazilian features depicting girls as they are and not how they want to be when they grow up. Blonde Hair, Small Chest, Wide Thighs, and Dark Skin) Estrela is beginning to cut in to Mattel’s markets share with the Susi doll Due to the popularity of the Susi doll has been released in Chile, Argentina, Paraguay, and Uruguay. 3) Japan SWOT Analysis For Japan Keeping Strategic Partnership With Bandai Strengths – Partnership has eliminated chronic operating losses – Bandai has a better grasp on what the target market needs/wants – Bandai is Japan’s largest toy company Weaknesses – Lack of understanding of target market Decreasing brand value of Barbie – Partnership takes money away from sole ownership – Lack of adapting to change, need to build foundation for this age and time Opportunities – Worlds second largest toy market – Japan toy market is worth $8 billion – video/computer games – Flavas doll line – Better technology and more ways to build brand awareness Threats – Bratz line of dolls – In 2003 Barbie’s share of fashion doll market dropped from 85% to 70% – “cooler” lines of dolls are being established