Today I was thinking of the oft repeated story about King Gillette, (real name) who supposedly invented ‘freebie’ marketing – the old “Give them the razor free, then sell them a gazillion razor blades” concept.
(Popular as that story is, it’s wrong… not because freebie marketing wasn’t a great idea, but because in reality, King actually charged a pretty hefty price for his razors!)
OK then… what does this have to do with our Doll business?
Because whether you think of it as similar to ‘freebie marketing,’ or more like ‘McDonald’s® Marketing’ add on selling (“You want fries with that?”), doll clothes is a multi-multi-million dollar part of the doll business.
Barbie® comes closest to being a ‘freebie marketing’ model. You can buy a Barbie® doll in a basic swimsuit for $7.99 – delivered to your daughter’s front door. 11″ Barbie Clones at the Dollar stores are even less! On Amazon there are approx 3400 different clothing items that you can buy that fit Barbie® and her clones.
American Girl®, is more like McDonalds® add on selling. Only available through their own stores or pop-ups, the 18″ dolls cost approximately $110. Their clothing runs roughly $30 for most outfits… some more, some less. I’ve seen articles online that price the average American Girl® doll and accessories, or a trip to one of their stores (including lunch) between $400 – $600 depending on who wrote the article and what kind of experience they were pricing. That’s a 3 to 5 times multiple folks.
In either case don’t you think we should all be paying more attention to selling doll clothes in our stores!?
Most of the major doll lines that we carry at the Pattycake Doll Company’s store has clothing to go with their dolls, Adora, Corolle, Madame Alexander, North American Bear, Manhattan Toy (Baby Stella and Groovy Girls), etc.
So there, in brief, is the marketing concepts behind doll clothes. Freebie Marketing like Barbie® or McDonalds® selling like American Girl®
In next week’s post we’ll discuss why selling doll clothes is great idea for the consumer – both the parents and their children.