December 12, 2017 | Toy Association staff and key online influencers have been hard at work promoting this year’s finalists for the 2018 Toy of the Year (TOTY) Awards. In addition to recognizing the best toys, games, and properties in the marketplace, the TOTY program is a critical fundraiser that supports the Toy Industry Foundation’s (TIF) mission to bring millions of toys to millions of children in need.
Since announcing the much-anticipated 122 TOTY finalists on November 3, The Toy Association has been promoting the finalists as the “must-have toys” of the holidays in broadcast TV segments in several markets, including Las Vegas, Charlotte, Detroit, Washington, DC, Chicago, and Los Angeles. Additionally, a TOTY news package has aired in seven cities and has already garnered 7.5 million impressions, with more airings scheduled.
The Toy Association has also expanded its partnerships with online influencers, including YouTube toy channels like That YouTub3 Family and Action Figure Insider, who are spreading awareness about the finalists. Each influencer created their own video showcasing toys from one of the 17 TOTY categories; they are also encouraging followers to vote for their favorites at ToyAwards.org. The influencer campaign has so far garnered more than 200,000 media impressions and over 5 million social impressions.
Kids and toy lovers of all ages are being encouraged to vote for their TOTY favorites at ToyAwards.org through January 5. To date, more than 96,000 votes have been cast, the highest number of votes on record and surpassing last year’s total of 85,000 votes.
Winners in each category, as well as the People’s Choice Award (determined solely by consumer votes) and the overall Toy of the Year Award, will be announced at an industry gala on February 16, 2018.
“TOTY finalists have been top of mind for Toy Association staff as we look for additional ways to promote our members’ innovative products – especially during the busy holiday selling season,” says Ken Seiter, The Toy Association’s executive vice president of marketing communications. “We encourage the professional toy community to reserve their tickets to the annual TOTY Awards on February 16 at The Ziegfeld Ballroom in New York City. Attendees will be able to enjoy a fabulous night of dinner, networking – and, of course, the anticipation of who will win this year’s awards!”
Toy companies that would like to promote their own TOTY finalists can request turnkey social media assets, including TOTY-branded images and copy for posts, from Jackie Retzer, The Toy Association’s assistant marketing manager.
The TOTY Awards program and ceremony is a critical fundraiser for the Toy Industry Foundation. To date, TIF has provided $200 million in toys to 24 million children in need around the globe thanks to generous donations made by manufacturers, distributors, retailers, and licensors to its signature program, The Toy Bank.
Visit TOTYAwards.org for more information or to request tickets for the TOTY ceremony.