Friday, February 4, 2011

Will Ken Woo Barbie Back Into His Arms?

Mattel, the world's largest toy company in the world, has launched a full-out digital marketing campaign around two of the most beloved dolls in history - Barbie & Ken.

The goal? To help Ken woo Barbie back into his arms by Valentine's Day.

Mattel is using Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, and Foursquare to involve all of us in their cat-and-mouse game of love. In one YouTube video, Ken goes to to set up his profile, completing it with this headline: "Pretty fly for a plastic guy." After searching the database, he finds his beloved Barbie and desperately tries to write something endearing to her. After erasing a few failed attempts, he opts instead for a "wink for free."

Ken uses Foursquare to check in at various places around town, including Saks Fifth Avenue (Barbie loves shoes), Mulholland Drive (a favorite place for Barbie and Ken to cruise with the top down), and Madison Square Garden (a great place to take in some new bands).

Both Ken and Barbie are heavy tweeters, commenting on their relationship (or lack thereof) along with comments on everyday things they experience and see in life.  

There's also a bit of traditional media involved in the Barbie-Ken courtship. Ken posted billboards in  New York and Los Angeles professing his love for Barbie.

Will Ken successfully woo Barbie back into his arms?

Well, that's up to all of you - go vote what your heart tells you on Barbie's Facebook page.

I have only one word for this campaign: BRILLIANT
  • Barbie® was born in 1959 in Willows, Wisconsin as Barbara Millicent Roberts
  • Her first outfit was the black and white striped swimsuit shown above
  • She has four sisters: Skipper® (1964), Stacie® (1992), Kelly® (1995) and Krissy® (1995)
  • Barbie’s first boyfriend, Ken®, debuted two years after Barbie® in 1961
  • Ken® was named after the son of Mattel founders Ruth and Elliot Handler 
  • Ken® was born on March 11, 1961 as Ken Carson in Willows, Wisconsin
  • Ken® is two years and two days younger than Barbie®
  • The first Ken® doll wore red swim trunks, cork sandals and had a yellow towel
  • Ken® has a younger brother, Tommy® (1997)
  • Ken’s best friend is Alan™, the husband of Midge®
  • Ken® met Barbie® on the set of their first television commercial together in 1961
  • Barbie® and Ken® broke up on Valentine’s Day in 2004
  • The first Barbie® doll sold for $3.00; the first Ken® doll sold for $3.50

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