(via With New Toys, Lego Hopes To Build Girls Market : NPR)
Bradley Wieners, executive editor at Bloomberg Businessweek magazine, got the scoop on the new girls’ toys, which will hit store shelves this January. He toldMorning Edition’s Steve Inskeep that Lego took an anthropological approach when designing the new girl Legos.
The company embedded researchers with families around the world, to shadow girls and boys and watch how they play. Based on this research, it came up with Lego Friends, a line that features five characters with back stories similar to those of the wildly popular American Girl dolls.
"This is the most significant strategic launch we’ve done in a decade," Lego CEO Jorgen Knudstorp told Wieners, in an article on the new line of toys. “We want to reach the other 50 percent of the world’s children."
The researchers found that girls do not like the iconic, chunky Lego minifigure. So the company designed a new one that’s slightly bigger than the traditional 1 1/2-inch figure, to make it easier for girls to put hairbrushes and handbags in the minifigures’ hands.
Another thing learned from the researchers was that while boys and girls both love to build, boys build in a linear fashion, assembling the kits from start to finish and not stopping until the toy looks like what’s on the cover of the box.
In contrast, girls like to stop along the way, and start role-playing while they are building. So, Wieners says, Lego bagged the girls’ toys differently, so they can begin playing before finishing the whole model.