I will be presenting the Keynote Speech at the “Kids Time,” Eastern European Toys, Games and Baby Products Fair, held in Kielce, Poland this year! Below please find information about my presentation:
(Originally posted on DailyLounge.com, by Amelia Floyd.)
Reyne Rice is back at the Toy Fair in NYC with this year’s hottest trends!
Lego adds fun to playing and taps into our imaginations! The LEGO brick is turning 60 this year and to celebrate, they have created five LEGO 60th Anniversary “What Will You Build?” sets, designed to inspire creativity and open-ended building. The boxes are colorful and filled with classic bricks, special elements and mini-figures. LEGO is a timeless, nostalgic toy that brings parents back to their childhood and connects them with their own kids. By focusing on Bigger Thinking, kids will build self-confidence with fun. No rules, just play, explore and discover. AND, in April, the Mini-figures celebrate their 40th anniversary~ Click here to learn more.
Kids can explore their dreams, while learning swimming skills with Fin Fun’s Mermaid Tails that let kids swim like real mermaids. The quality of these tails are spectacular, and Fin Fun offers a 60-day Tail Tip Guarantee. The patented monofins are inserted into the tail and the quick-release design, lets you remove the tail with just a tug and a kick of the feet. Mermaid tails are recommended for competent swimmers 6 years and older, and ONLY with adult supervision. Adults can wear them too! Coral Cloud is a NEW Limited Edition color and Mariana’s Tidal Wave is a consistent best seller. Click here to learn more.
Are you looking for a fun game that challenges your kids? Build OR Boom by Goliath Games encourages kids, ages 4 and up, to hone their STEM skills. Each child sees who can be the first to bring the blueprint cards to life. Kids work on their own platform, quickly but carefully, to match the blueprint. Be the first one to finish, then SMASH the boomer and demolish the other players’ building to win the round. Driven by kids’ imagination and parents will love that no batteries are required. Click here to learn more.
Smartgurlz is a line of Award winning, self-balancing robots and action dolls that teaches girls to code. As Seen on Shark Tank, just connect your smartphone or tablet to the E-Learning app and give your daughter STEM confidence and provide loads of fun. Watch your robot roll across the room, perform dance moves or play learning games. The app includes missions, books and a step-by-step tutorial on how to code! Click here to learn more.
Originally published in
[Scroll down to bottom of the page for article in English.]TOYS Magazine 2 2018 TOY Trends Article_Reyne_Rice
TrendScouting – Top 3 trends for Spielwarenmesse 2018
Written by Reyne Rice, Global Trend Hunter/ CEO, ToyTrends from New York, USA, and TrendCommittee Member, for Spielwarenmesse 2018.
Originally appeared in TOYS Magazine, Germany, Feb 2018 issue
The Explore Nature trend stimulates children to rediscover the big outdoors, and all of the wonderful play experiences available to them, right outside their front doors, in their gardens and in nature’s living playground. Children are reminded of the joys and the simple wonder found in investigating the green oases in their neighbourhood. Today’s children spend countless hours in front of computers, smartphones and TVs and less and less time outdoors. The time has come to see beyond the digital screen, and open their eyes to the wonder in real life.
“Explore Nature”: This trend brings children closer to nature again and encourages them to explore and investigate the wonder of real life and engage in activities available in their gardens, forests and backyards.
The Just for Fun trend encourages kids to just be kids. Play for the fun of it, create your own rules, negotiate the boundaries with the other children. This type of creative and imaginative play focuses on fun, and there are no pre-determined outcomes. Discover, explore, imagine. How do you know it’s working? Listen for the sounds of gleeful, and happy laughter, contagious and carefree. Or delight in the sight of children blissfully creating a fort, or building a tower of construction bricks, or role-playing imaginative scenes from their imaginations.
“Just for Fun”: Whether playing alone, in pairs or in a larger group, this trend focuses on the child’s pure enjoyment of play, without complicated rules. Because there is no right or wrong. Simply letting imagination and ingenuity run wild.
Team Spirit is the 2018 trend that fosters a sense of community through play and helps children develop their social skills. Through competitive teams, children quickly learn that it takes the whole team, interacting and cooperating together, to succeed and win the trophy. Through cooperative play, children also develop important social and emotional skills, such as flexibility, listening, exploring different options, and learning to compromise. By talking together, respecting diversity and seeking to understand diverse opinions, children gain valuable new knowledge, and learn empathy. Lone operators rarely emerge the victors in the end. By learning to work together, everyone wins.
“Team Spirit”: Playing together and developing social interaction tools has become a renewed focus for both the young and old in our society. Only together are we strong and capable of solving tasks and problems. Through play, and teamwork, children practice these important skills.
Fair attendees at 2018 Spielwarenmesse are encouraged to begin their tradeshow experience in Hall 3A. The TrendGallery 2018 is featured there, showcasing prime examples of these three new trend stories: Explore Nature, Just for Fun, and Team Spirit, compiled by the prestigious 10-member international Trend Committee. Hall 3A also highlights the ToyAward 2018 winners and nominees, the innovation cubes and the free daily educational series in the Toy Business Forum.
Each afternoon, on Days 1-4, tradeshow attendees can enjoy a free TrendGallery 2018 Topline Trends Overview, curated and presented by one of two key Trend Committee 2018 members: Dr. Maria Costa, head of the Childrens Research Department at AIJU, Technological Institute of Childrens Products, from Spain, and Reyne Rice, Global Trend Hunter and CEO/Founder of ToyTrends, from the USA. Listen to these experts explore these 2018 Topline Trends, in the Toy Business Forum. While in Hall 3A, collect your personal copy of the Trends & Innovations Guide and see live demonstrations of products that showcase these 2018 over-arching trend stories.
I had the opportunity to test out my Jedi skills in the Lenovo booth at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas. Check out the video!
A future of retailing that envisions physical retail shopping, paired with an insatiable consumer passion for innovation. A vision that focuses on retail spaces embracing tactile and in-person experiences to delight shoppers, and products that are integral to solidifying that sensation of discovery.
There are some positive examples of brick-and-mortar retailers that have provided welcome experiences for consumers and received both encouraging customer support AND money in their cash registers. This is a profitable sign that the brick-and-mortar retail trend focus can be a working model, for retailers who are willing to shake things up.
Listen to your customers
Never say never. Listen to your customer’s requests and meet their needs. The TrendWatching team has reported that Everlane, a prominent online fashion retailer has just opened a flagship retail fashion outlet in New York City, in December 2017. The brand, who originally stated over five years ago that they would NEVER open a retail outlet, has listened to their consumer base, and met their high-touch demands for a store where they could touch and feel the fashions, and a place where they could return merchandise in-store.
This launch store location does combine online shopper profiles, linked to their POS (point-of-sale) in-store retail experience, by requiring their customers to link the two, before leaving the retail location, providing a seamless shopping footprint.
Combine offline and online shopping
Even Amazon, the largest online retailer, has invested in physical retail. Amazon recently purchased the Whole Foods grocery chain, for $13.4 Billion US dollars. Jeff Bezos, Amazon’s contrary founder, has placed a stake in the ground for expansion into brick-and mortar retailing, and plans on reaching new consumers, through physical retail stores, combined with online ordering and delivery systems. Click-and-collect retail shopping is not a new trend. Yet if managed correctly, it can be an enhanced benefit to some consumers, especially millennials, who value convenience and time-saving features, yet demand quality goods, and eco-friendly and organic options.
Provide a homey atmosphere
Embrace your authentic atmosphere and make local a prominent feature. Stores that reflect their local community and offer local artists and makers a chance to shine, provide a true compass for both local shoppers and tourists. This unique approach to honoring your differences can provide a fresh face to your retail location, and invite repeat sales.
The Village Toys shop in Incline Village, on the shores of Lake Tahoe, California, offers a nostalgic feel for their customers, with a combination toyshop and ice cream parlor. This approach encourages cross-over sales for the huge Fourth of July visitor crowd swelling the town’s population seven-fold on this popular Holiday as a destination location. And year-round, the owners keep their finger on the pulse, rotating in new merchandise (such as jumping on fidget spinners, early in 2017), combined with classic toys and games.
Create a new retail model
Be the new retail model that makes sense, to consumers and manufacturers. At the recent Digital Kids Summit, held in Austin, Texas, in end of September 2017, a new store concept, B8ta, was the focus of an evening field-trip for conference attendees. The revolutionary retail store boasts new technology and demos for consumers, seeking the latest in tech and gadgetry for kids and adults.
One of the store co-founders of this San-Francisco based chain of 10 locations, Vibhu Norby explained their store concept charges manufacturers for the privilege of being featured in their high-tech, high touch stores. Products are demonstrated by associates, who are NOT pressured to sell the merchandise, but are tasked with showing the product features to the customers who enter the store, based on the customer interests.
This shift in thinking about the consumer experience has raised 19.5 Million US dollars in investments, and challenges how physical retail space can be monetized differently. Recently, B8ta announced that their smart-home-focused B8ta products will be featured in 70 nationwide USA Lowe’s DIY home improvement stores, and that selected Macy’s flagship locations will also feature B8ta in-store boutiques.
Surprise and delight your customers
Retailers who can provide a compelling destination for their customers, and a unique reason for consumers to choose them, over other alternatives, have a chance at surviving the “retail apocalypse” that has plagued many less-than-innovative retail chains. Many started out fresh and different, and then became tired, and less exclusive.
Surprise and delight your customers, be the source of expert recommendations and demonstrations, and your customers will not only become loyal patrons, but they will broadcast your message through word-of-mouth and social media.