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LEGO Criticism

Marketing to Males Only

Lego Group

on 14 March 2013

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Transcript of LEGO Criticism

1980's: marketing exclusively to boys
"Zack the LEGO Maniac"
Negative feedback from critics and consumers
Response: Feminine Re-branding
LEGO Friends Video
The Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood: Toys Oppressive And Destructive to Young Children (TODAY) Award to LEGO Friends Butterfly Set
Over- feminist approach to marketing to girls James Cunningham, Hallie Exall, Spencer Haag, Spencer Olson, Austin Olson, & Amy Reede LEGO- Feminist Criticism Negative Attitudes
Towards LEGO Launch of LEGO Friends in 2012 led to criticism of gender-based marketing
Overboard with the gender and cultural stereotype
Sexualized figurines
Puts the interests of girls and boys into limiting boxes

-Anonymous Amazon Reviewer What's Not Working? Failing Tactics Change 1: Show Boys & Girls Together Change 2: Multi-sex Branding Change 3:
Co-Branding Research & Findings Multi-sex Branding is a key change that can use brand extension to change perception of characters GIRLS:
"They are fun to play with."
"More of a boys toy."
"The boys like to play with them together to build things."
"Yes because then me and my friends could play 'house' with the little boy and girl figures"
"Yes! Girl colored LEGOs would be fun and pretty."

"Yes, me and my friends can build awesome things and then knock it all down!!!"
"More boys play with them, so I think its more for boys"
Sensory stimuli References Sex of characters and proper distribution of colors can add to girls' appeal when deciding on toy purchases "Some girls like superheroes, some girls like princesses, some boys like superheroes, some boys like princesses. So why do all the girls have to buy pink stuff and all the boys have to buy different color stuff?" Cole, S., & Shoemaker Richards, B. (2012). change.org. Retrieved from http://www.change.org/petitions/tell-lego-to-stop-selling-out-girls-liberatelego

LEGO. (2007). 80's commercials - Zack the lego maniac [Theater]. Available from

LEGO. (2012). Lego friends 2012 - welcome to heartlake city commercial [Theater]. Available from

Feminist Frequency. (2012). Lego & gender part 2: The boys club [Theater]. Available from http://www.feministfrequency.com/2012/02/lego-gender-part-2-the-boys-club/

Smith, M. (2012). Controversial lego friends among worst toys of 2012. Yahoo News, Retrieved from http://games.yahoo.com/blogs/unplugged/controversial-lego-friends-among-worst-toys-2012-180502792.html

Solomon, M. R. (2013). Personality and Psychographics . Consumer behavior (10th ed., pp. 219-247). Upper Saddle River (N.J.): Pearson Prentice Hall. *( Cole & Shoemaker Richards, 2012) Advertising Strategy *References: (Feminist Frequency, 2012), (Smith, 2012) *(LEGO, 2007) *(LEGO, 2012) If Lego decided to direct their ads to both young males and females, many
of the feminist criticisms may
be dropped Some brands to consider are Barbie, My Little Pony, or Easy Bake Just like they have already done with Disney, Lego should consider co-branding with more feminine companies to attract more female attention. *( Cole & Shoemaker Richards, 2012), (Solomon, 2013) Product Placement: Found in "boy sections"
Kept separate from "girl toys" Pricing: Costs about $0.11 per LEGO piece -> adds up quickly
Failed attempts marketing to girls - ie. LEGO friends
Petition to stop LEGO selling out to girls Led to a petition to against the girl-themed LEGO Friends References: (Miller & Gray, 2012) (Yahoo, 2012) (Connor, 2011) (Smith, 2012) "With the Lego 'Friends' collection, my daughter is being firmly taught her place in our culture. Her place is pink and pastel, and it is focused on her appearance, leisure activity, homemaking, baking, or the care of animals. Thank God! Thank Lego!" - Riley Maida, Spokeswoman for Campaign against LEGO Friends *( Cole & Shoemaker Richards, 2012)
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