Marketing Specialists Discuss the Future of Licensing at Licensing Expo

Licensing executives sit down to discuss marketing priorities and licensing trends.

Alex Markovich, Sponsored Content Editor

May 23, 2024

2 Min Read
(l-r) Alison Neill, Kim Miller, Jeremy Tucker, Veronica Hart
(l-r) Alison Neill, Kim Miller, Jeremy Tucker, Veronica HartLicense Global

On the last day of Licensing Expo 2024, an informative discussion was held with Kim Miller, global chief marketing officer and president, Toys R Us; Alison Neil, global brand strategy, ALDO Group; and Jeremy Tucker, global chief marketing officer and executive vice president of franchise, Spin Master, and was moderated by Veronica Hart, chair-elect, Licensing International and founder, Hartstring Entertainment. The discussion covered the importance of marketing in the licensing industry, how to balance generational needs and navigating consumer behaviors.

One specific marketing technique that all three speakers mentioned during the session was the importance of staying close to the consumer. This means being active on social media to collect consumers’ organic negative and positive reactions and thoughts. Not only do companies learn what is and what is not working for their brands, but they also are able to forecast trends and what their consumers want.

Neil explained that there are micro trends on social media, and they usually last about two weeks. However, a collection of several micro-trends can lead to a much larger trend that can last for multiple seasons.

Another item the speakers agreed upon was the importance of being in-tuned with culture. By doing so, companies can elevate the success of a marketing campaign. For instance, the “Barbie” movie re-emphasized the topic of women's equality and inclusivity. Women heavily appreciated the movie bringing the topic back into the spotlight, which resulted in capturing a new audience and reconnecting older fans with Barbie and its merchandise. According to Neil, this led to a huge increase in the success of Aldo’s collaboration with Barbie.

Capturing Multiple Generations

Alongside consumer trends and behaviors, the uptick in nostalgia and “kidult” culture and using it to capture multiple audiences was discussed. Young adults and parents are from the Gen Z and millennial generations, and they have continuously looked for outlets of escape due to the emotional and psychological effects of the pandemic. As young adults and parents have re-engaged with brands from their past, it has also opened the door for their kids and other children to be introduced to these nostalgic brands.

Tucker noted that nostalgic brands and products are balanced. Newer brands like "PAW Patrol” have seen success over the past 11 years with consistent growth and have launched multiple collaborations in several verticals.

About the Author(s)

Alex Markovich

Sponsored Content Editor, License Global

Alex Markovich is the Sponsored Content Editor for License Global and currently resides in Denver, Colorado, USA. She has written across a variety of publications, such as SDxCentral, Housing Wire, Clear Admit and The US Sun. This experience has given her the ability to gain expertise in tech, energy, real estate, education, non-profits and news. Not only does she have a diverse writing portfolio, but Alex also has mastery in advertising, brand awareness, brand identity and content strategy. She obtained her bachelor’s degree in English from Florida State University and is professionally certified in editing from the University of Chicago.

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