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Are You Advertising on Kids’ Shows? Maybe You Should Be

September 6th, 2018   ||    by Callie Wheeler   ||    No Comments

Advertising on kids’ shows might sound like a strategy best left to Mattel or Nabisco, but recent research might convince you otherwise. While not for every brand, a creative strategy and tailored messaging can appropriately position many brands for a younger audience, and there are a few good reasons to consider whether you can make it work—such as kids’ $1.2 trillion in annual purchasing power, according to Viacom.

Parents May Be the CFOs, but Kids Are on the Purchasing Committee

With over half of families—and about three-quarters of millennial parents—telling the Washington Post their children influenced their home buying decision, should we be surprised they influence every other kind of household purchase?

Viacom’s recent research revealed irrefutable proof that children play a large role in household purchasing decisions. When surveyed, 77 percent of parents said their children requested products they saw advertised on television, and 73 percent of parents said they’ve purchased the requested products. So the products that brands are advertising on kids’ shows are being requested by name, then purchased.

And not only that, the survey found that parents spend 60 percent more when their children are involved in the buying process.

Favorite Brands Are Favorites for Life

That same Viacom research found 25 percent of brand preferences persisted into adulthood, proving that advertising on kids’ shows has benefits that continue on for years. Think back to your own childhood and remember the ads you saw for cereals, toys, snacks, and games. Depending on your age, they might have been dolls or video games, cookies or Lunchables, but you probably still remember some of them.

Even a few years ago, Harvard Business Review covered research that showed familiar foods from childhood were considered healthier than unfamiliar foods, both creating an issue and shedding more light on our preference for the known.

Early Brand Exposure Is Great—Now What?

The research is convincing, so you may want to consider advertising on kids’ shows, even if you haven’t historically. But what should you do, and how do you make sure your efforts are effective? Consider the following ideas:

  1. Position your brand to be relevant to children. Viacom’s research found kids’ main emotional drivers of purchase decisions are spending time with their family, being trusted and respected, and just “being a kid.”
  2. Position your brand to the whole family, not just kids. MediaPost reported family-wide ads from brands like Walmart, Procter & Gamble, and Toyota are strong advertisers for Nickelodeon as parents and their kids often watch the channel together.
  3. Include streaming in your strategy, leveraging programmatic advertising for your cross-channel needs. Inventory on OTT channels or social channels like YouTube may be a good fit.

With these strategies, you can position your brand for success in a new market.

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