BRANDchild: Inside the Minds of Today's Global Kids: Understanding Their Relationship with Brands


Teens are a new type of audience. An increasingly powerful and smart consumer group, they spent US$1 trillion across the globe last year. $25 billion was spent on advertising aimed at them.

They are different in every way. They are more likely to have a friend on the other side of the world than in their own street, they think the TV remote is broken when they can’t find the cursor on the screen, and they drop from existence when the battery in their cell phone is flat. This is ...

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Teens are a new type of audience. An increasingly powerful and smart consumer group, they spent US$1 trillion across the globe last year. $25 billion was spent on advertising aimed at them.

They are different in every way. They are more likely to have a friend on the other side of the world than in their own street, they think the TV remote is broken when they can’t find the cursor on the screen, and they drop from existence when the battery in their cell phone is flat. This is a generation who spend more hours in front of a screen than outside the home, whose attention span is shorter than the break between commercials, who have lost creativity but have amazing capabilities of thinking and reacting fast. And they know current brand images better than any advertising expert. BRANDChild is the first book ever to look at the phenomena behind global kids and their relationship to brands.

It is a unique exploration undertaken from a global perspective, comparing behaviors across the US, Europe and Asia. The book is based on a study undertaken by Millward Brown, the leading global market research agency, in ten countries, including the US, Canada, Australia, China, Japan, India, Britain, Germany, France and in Scandinavia, augmented by data from internal research from Nickelodeon USA and Europe. Interviews were conducted with the experts behind brands like Mattel, Sony, Disney and LEGO as well as the inventors behind BoyZone and Nsync.

BRANDChild summarizes this research as well as decades of experience from a variety of other sources on how to market to kids. It looks at their life priorities and hopes and dreams but also dives behind the scenes to determine the true drivers of kids’ trends by analyzing teen-minority groups, communities and clubs. It looks at trends and changing perspectives and proposes a new way of marketing to this young audience. The book is packed with useful advice on how to create kids’ brands and includes case studies presented in an accessible format.

About the Authors

Martin Lindstrom- is one of the world’s leading brand experts. Former advisor to Mars, Pepsi, Cartoon Network and LEGO, he founded BBDO Interactive Worldwide, was COO of British Telecom/Looksmart and is the author of "Brand Building on the Internet" and "Clicks, Bricks & Brands", both published by Kogan Page.

Patricia B. Seybold- is recognized throughout the world for pinpointing new information technologies that will change business processes and transform industries. She is the author of the best-selling ", providing insight into how leading companies design their e-business strategies and "The Customer Revolution", a book exploring how to measure what matters most to customers.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
This book tackles the popular question, "What do kids want?" To answer that question, the authors use their real-world marketing experience and incorporate research data on "tweens" (children aged 9-14) from seven countries. Each chapter takes these data and uses them to discuss what works and what doesn't when marketing to this increasingly powerful market segment. By focusing on children around the world (albeit relatively affluent ones) and providing data on such aspects of modern life as virtual-reality computer games, instant messaging, and the threat of terrorism, this work provides a global yet intimate picture of tweens in the world today. While little concrete information is provided about the study itself, the firsthand observations and brand-name case studies offer a window into a group about whom many of us know very little. Obviously, this book will quickly become dated, but it gives current marketers the information they need to target the youth market. Recommended for marketing collections in both academic and public libraries.-Susan Hurst, Miami Univ. Libs., Oxford, OH Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Soundview Executive Book Summaries
Insights Into Brands and the Minds of Global Kids
Nearly every child in the developed world has a special relationship with a specific brand that can continue for years. To learn more about the behaviors and attitudes of children around the globe between the ages of 8 and 14, a leading global market research agency conducted an in-depth study of the relationships these "tweens" have with brands. The study, involving thousands of children from more than 70 cities in 15 countries throughout Europe, Asia, the United States and South America, provides a compelling look at how companies market to children.

The goal of the study was to talk to the children who are likely to represent the future global consumer population, and find out what new products and services they would be interested in buying.

Throughout BRANDchild, Martin Lindstrom, a marketing guru, and Patricia Seybold, an expert on customer value, detail the study's results and provide insight into the priorities, hopes, dreams and desires of children while exploring the forces that fuel teen trends.

Sparking Loyalty
While summarizing and exploring the results of the study, the authors offer practical advice to marketers on ways to create brands that target children, and propose many new ways for marketers to reach young people. While presenting the best ways to capture the attention of this giant market segment, the authors offer a multifaceted perspective of the thoughts that compel young people to buy, collect, play, trade, and interact online. The influences of television, magazines, friends and parents on tweens are covered in depth, and the authors offer numerous action points that describe how the data collected in the study can be used to attract a younger audience. For example, at the end of a chapter that details the power of new media channels to spark loyalty in young minds, and the adults who aim to please them, the authors offer these five guidelines that should be considered before a media and brand plan is developed:

  1. Turn your brand into a 24-hour worker. Brands need to be accessible 24 hours a day, because this generation has little understanding of the old-fashioned concept of "opening hours." As far as tweens are concerned, every worthwhile brand is accessible on the Internet 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
  2. Ensure 100 percent connectivity. With connectivity as just another utility, we would expect to have all television content available at any time - in exactly the same way we expect the Internet to be available.
  3. Ensure your brand thinks mobile. Close to 20 percent of all urban tweens, worldwide, currently have their own mobile phone. Your brand must be mobile as well.
  4. Contextualize. Every future media channel will be integrated in a line that traces the effects of the customer's ongoing purchasing behavior. The authors write that brands will need to transmit relevant messages at relevant moments, and consumers will need to be in the mood to receive unsolicited information on their mobile phones.
  5. Team up with a top brand before your competitor does. Everyone can successfully team up in brand alliances, regardless of the size of a brand's equity.

Why We Like This Book
BRANDchild presents a fascinating look into the minds and actions of young consumers, and describes the far-reaching ramifications of their behaviors in highly measured detail. By exploring what tweens want and examining what will continue to appeal to tweens over the years, the authors present ideas marketers must consider if they are trying to create a formula for a brand that consistently appeals to the tween audience. Since research indicates that tweens and teens had a combined income of $121 billion in 1998, up from $86 billion only five years prior, this television-loving market segment cannot be ignored. Copyright © 2003 Soundview Executive Book Summaries

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780749438678
  • Publisher: Kogan Page, Ltd.
  • Publication date: 3/1/2003
  • Pages: 322
  • Product dimensions: 6.38 (w) x 9.50 (h) x 0.99 (d)

Meet the Author

Lindstrom is recognized as one of the world's primary online branding gurus. He developed some of Australia's, Asia's and Europe's most successful websites. He was co-founder of Europe's largest Internet company, BBDO Interactive (now Fremfab), in 1995, founder of Australia/Asia's largest Internet solution company, ZIVO, in 1997 and in 1999 International Chief Operating Officer for BTLookSmart.

Patricia B. Seybold is the author of the international best-seller "" and "The Customer Revolution". She is the founder and CEO of the Boston-based The Patricia Seybold Group (, which for more than 25 years has specialized in helping Fortune 500 companies design and continuously improve their customer-focused business strategies.

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Table of Contents

About the study
About the authors and contributors
BRANDchild updated at
1 Tweens 1
2 Tween dreams for sale 25
3 Bonded to brands: the transition years 45
4 Exit fairyland 71
5 Creating imagination 91
6 How do tweens feel about 111
7 Stardust 121
8 The peer factor 137
9 Cyberchild 157
10 Personalized brands build strong businesses 185
11 Santa's nightmare 193
12 The essence of being a child 209
13 Pump up the volume 215
14 Superchannels 233
15 Kidzbiz 249
16 Tweens take to hats 281
17 Calling kids 289
App. 1 The BRANDchild research: the world's most extensive study of tween attitudes and brand relationships 311
App. 2 Code of ethics 315
Index 317
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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 18, 2004

    Packed with Knowledge!

    This is an excellent book about marketing to children. Based on extensive research into the attitudes, perceptions, emotions and preferences of children around the world, it tells you in no uncertain terms how to target one of the biggest and most influential consumer populations on earth. Children between the ages of 8 and 14, dubbed ¿tweens¿ (¿tweenagers¿) by the authors, are a curious group. They are also a lonely, insecure group with an engaging mix of naiveté and sophistication. Devilishly hard to capture, they are a rich economic prize, controlling an enormous amount of money of their own, and strongly influencing their families¿ purchases, even of major appliances. This book shows you what matters to these kids and what false notes to avoid if you want to tap into their buying power. We acknowledge that some readers may be uncomfortable with such tactics as setting up a web site that pretends to belong to a friendly child in order to attract kids and start buzz about some brand, but the book¿s reporting is accurate, practical and forward looking, for good or ill.

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