I am torn typing this since I grew up with America’s fav blonde bombshell doll, but alas the time has come to face the truth after 54 years the queen of Barbi-lon must bow to others. I am sure Cleo and Nefera will be thrilled that the De Nile of Barbie has come to an end.
So let’s get to the all of the freaky facts on this subject.
Barbie sales are still tumbling.
Barbie dolls are losing favor with kids.
Sales of Mattel’s signature doll dropped a whopping 21% last quarter, reports Matt Townsend at Bloomberg News. Revenue has declined more than 10% for the last four quarters.
Mattel executives highlighted a few reasons that the iconic dolls are declining in popularity in an earnings call with investors.
They also hinted at the future of Barbie, which CEO Bryan Stockton said is “still the number one dollar brand in the world” thanks to an empire of books, movies, clothing, and games.
Here’s why fewer girls are buying the dolls.
1. Kids are spending more on tech.
The popularity of tablets, smartphones, and games is taking market share from Barbie dolls, Townsend writes. As kids increasingly spend their allowances on technology, plastic dolls aren’t as exciting.
To deal with this shift, Mattel has been offering a variety of Barbie apps, computer games, and movies.
The brand also sells a Barbie digital “makeover mirror” which allows girls to apply make-up to a Barbie doll’s face.
Kohl’sBarbie’s makeover mirror.
2. Girls want edgier toys.
Monter High dolls are “cannibalizing” Barbie sales as girls opt for the edgier toys, company executives said last year.
Mattel created Monster High in 2010, and sales have been skyrocketing ever since they hit shelves.
The dolls are inspired by famous monsters like Dracula, the Mummy, Medusa, and Frankenstein’s monster, and retail for around $20 each (compared with around $10 for Barbie).
Monster High is “all about celebrating your differences,” company execs said on the call, adding that the franchise appeals to both younger and older girls.
ReutersMonster High dolls are taking market share from Barbie.
Barbie wouldn’t last a day at Monster High.
The latest fashion dolls from Mattel Inc. are a dramatic departure from the toy maker’s most recognizable blond: As the offspring of famous monsters, the new Monster High girls are fearless, occasionally furry and a bit freaky.
There’s Draculaura, daughter of Dracula, who is vegan and faints at the sight of blood. Her best friend Clawdeen Wolf, whose father is Werewolf, spends much of her time plucking and shaving her excessive, fast-growing hair. And classmate Frankie Stein, who sports stitches just like dad Frankenstein, loves to shop for “scary cute clothes that are absolutely to die for.”
“They’re fun characters to build a world around,” said Tim Kilpin, general manager for Mattel Brands. “Who doesn’t feel like a freak in high school? It started with that universal truth.”