Why Shows Are Important For Brands In The Business of Play?


Disney On Ice
Last weekend Dubai hosted Disney on Ice Show in the Dubai World Trade Centre where all the family members enjoyed a special appearance by Disney favorites with the likes of Anna, Elsa and Olaf from the Academy Award-winning and number one animated feature film of all time, Frozen along with Cinderella, Belle, Snow White, Rapunzel and Tiana with their love interests.

The show has been a great success, and the supporting marketing campaign behind it which included above the line and below the line channels was strong and effective, creating an excellent offline and online buzz about the show.

Having been in the toy and entertainment industry for a while now, I have to say that I am a huge fan of shows and I believe they add a great competitive edge to kids’ brands including toys. By bringing characters to life, shows boost your brand from 5 different aspects:

  •  Adding an emotional depth to the brand by bringing characters to life; A show usually tells a story or portrays an adventure, played by the beloved characters’ of the brand giving the chance for kids to see their favorite characters infront of them in real life. This live face to face interaction adds an emotional depth to the brand creating a deeper connection with the audience.


  • Building deeper connections with kids; As a result of point #1, the toy brand that develops entertainment or edutainment shows and brings their characters to life builds stronger connections with their audience. Kids can now relate further to their favorites characters, hear their voices, live with them their experieinces and even dance and laugh with them. 


  • Boosting the brand’s sales; Media has a strong and positive influence on sales. We often read news about booming sales after the release of a new series on kids’ TV, online channels or the release of a new movie on the big screens, great examples would be the Lego Movie, Cinderella and Jurassic World. And the same concept applies when shows are organized. Kids get excited about seeing their characters coming to life, and by connecting with them on a more intimate level they become keener on buying the products before or after the show. What’s even more positive that parents themselves become more encouraged to buy these toys especially if they felt the story was very inspiring and has added a great value to their kids’ lives.
  • Creating an additional revenue stream; Most shows are organized at malls (in this case in Dubai the show is FOC for the audience) or at exhibition halls (which is a paid entry). In all cases brands get paid whether from governmental bodies/ tourism authorities or mall managements who strive to offer the best shows to the visitors/ residents of the cities. This is in addition to other sources of income, which come from the ticket sales revenue and sponsorship opportunities from the companies who are keen on reaching the same target market the show is created for.
  • Leveraging the shared resources of all partners; For a show to happen 2 or more partners work together on bringing this show to life starting from the brand itself, the organizers, the venue, the media sponsors and other official sponsors. Each of the partners has a separate marketing/ distribution channels and resources which they all share in order to create a successful marketing campaign and organize a blockbuster event, so the show and the brand will get a very high exposure in a very cost effective way.

Dsiney on Ice Ad

Despite that the above advantages are beneficial for the business, they are achievable with the presence of 2 important factors: 1) Creating an inspiring and breathtaking content that will inspire kids/ families and wow them, ultimately creating a strong word of mouth. 2) Planning and executing a strong marketing campaign to create the required awareness about the event and attract high footfall. These 2 factors are extremely important in order to gain the maximum benefits and return on this investment.


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