How could Barbie expand her licensed product line?

Updated: Aug 10

By Philippe Guinaudeau, CEO


There is no need to mention the Barbie brand. It's a kind of world heritage, so well-known that everyone can talk about it.


Barbie is one of the top ten most popular brands among girls aged 3 to 9 in every country. This is due to a combination of high awareness and positive attitudes.


So, why does Barbie's purchase intent appear to be so low in comparison to the other KPIs?


Barbie is well-known and belongs to the top companies (90 percent in average, up to 97 percent in Brazil, Mexico and Turkey, and not less than 80 percent - in the Netherlands).


Barbie is once again among the top achievers when it comes to attitudes. More than three out of five girls adore it (61 percent, up to 75 percent in Brazil).


The brand's popularity skyrockets as a result of the combination of the two. Given the high level of ownership (75 percent on average, good when compared to BrandTrends benchmark), the purchase intent of 76 percent is somewhat surprising.


While this is an excellent result, the current global potential appears to be constrained by the current ownership base. Indeed, the Consumer Demand Gap (Consideration – Ownership) is one point, indicating that the brand's current owner base has little growth potential.


With that in mind, we can refine our approach by splitting the contributing countries in 2 groups:


  1. Those with a strong buying funnel and where demand for licensed products exceeds supply. Turkey, Germany, the United Kingdom, Mexico, and Australia are examples of this. The brand must expand in such countries by diversifying its product offerings.Those with a strong buying funnel and where demand for licensed products exceeds supply. Turkey, Germany, the United Kingdom, Mexico, and Australia are examples of this. The brand must expand in such countries by diversifying its product offerings; increasing the penetration of multiple product categories among existing buyers, in other words.

  2. Those who have a good buying funnel but are in line with the market average. Many European countries, such as France, Spain, Italy, Belgium, and the Netherlands, are in this group, as are China and Canada. In those territories, the brand must first extend its present ownership base – e.g. more households buying - before focusing on deepening its penetration via more product categories among the current owners.


Barbie may particularly address the countries' characteristics and reinforce their sales results in Licensed items by targeting these various strategies. It would also strengthen its interaction with its primary target by being present in the daily lives of girls aged 3 to 9 across a broader number of touch points.

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