« on: April 10, 2005, 05:59 PM »
My own midnight madness and the ensuing weekend's experiences do go against the grain of what's been discussed here. I actually ran across a number of parents with their kids in the stores picking out not only lightsabers, but new figures. And a lot of the kids knew exactly what they were looking for. Additionally, I've seen a semi-new class of collector: parents who are collectors who have gotten their kids into it as well. I saw at least half a dozen or more of these parent-child teams at Toys R Us that night. Things like that are definitely a welcome sight.
I've seen the 80% number thrown around in this thread as well. That number is soft, being more around 70-75%, and there's a big mitigating factor with it as well that has been overlooked. That statistic is the market share of collectors for NON-MOVIE YEARS. That number skews much more in favor of kids during movie years. I haven't seen hard sales figures on it, but that is indeed the case.
Hasbro does seem to be making some inroads with kids. The Galactic Heroes line has been gaining some momentum, and I've seen parents picking these up for kids. However, one of the biggest sellers for kids is in the roleplay market. Lightsabers and to a lesser extent blasters are the biggest sellers for Hasbro in the children's demo.
As for the decline in sales from EPISODE I to EPISODE II, there's a big factor that wasn't discussed by anyone in this thread or in the Wall Street Journal for that matter. The economy. Shame on WSJ for not even touching on that, because the 1999 economy was a lot stronger than that of 2002. As a result, individual discretionary spending was lower in that time of economic recession. People were spending less across the board , and that cut in personal spending has a more drastic affect on non-essential goods like toys and collectibles. It's not always about the toys, folks.