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Toys “R” Us gears up for holiday shopping with mobile-fueled campaign

October 7, 2013

Toys “R” Us relies on mobile

Toys “R” Us is launching an exclusive line of cars and play sets that leverages QR codes and a mobile application to give kids a more engaging experience.

The “Monsters 500” line features ten different monster characters that debut in stores on Oct. 14. The line is one of the ways that Toys “R” Us is incorporating mobile into a broader multichannel holiday marketing strategy.

“We’re seeing a growing affinity for toys and toy lines that allow a play experience beyond hands-on fun,” said Kerry Smith, assistant manager of corporate communications at Toys “R” Us, Wayne, NJ.

“Kids and parents love products that combine tangible and intangible play,” she said. “Monster 500 does just that.

“All of the characters in the line have distinct personalities that kids are sure to fall in love with, so to be able to bring them to life in a racing game is really cool.”

Mobile racing
Consumers can collect ten different three-inch cars with different ghoulish characters, and the line is planned to be expanded in the spring.

Toys “R” Us has created an iPhone and Android app called Monsters 500 that brings the characters in the cars to life.

Via the app, consumers can virtually drive the car around a track that includes the Toys “R” Us logo.

Along the track players can collect different power-ups and blocks, and consumers can pick from several different race courses.

Each vehicle includes a card that consumers can use to access the digital component of the toys.

Additionally, a QR code is placed on the packaging of each toy.

The on-package QR code

When consumers scan the QR code, they are directed to the campaign’s microsite at

The site will launch in conjunction with the roll out of the toys and will let consumers learn more about the cars.

The microsite also serves as a way for consumers to learn about the different characters and follow their stories as they try to win the race.

The campaign is also supported with television, Web and social marketing.

Past efforts
Toys “R” Us has been building up its mobile efforts significantly in the past few years by using several different types of technology.

Earlier this year, the retailer rolled out an interactive iPad app that lets consumers play with different characters (see story).

Additionally, the retailer revamped its mobile site and apps last year to trigger holiday sales (see story).

“Mobile is a key component of the company’s omnichannel strategy and continues to be our most rapidly growing channel of consumer engagement,” Ms. Smith said.

“We are focused on growing our mobile capabilities this holiday and will be incorporating mobile technology into a number of initiatives this season, including Monster 500,” she said.

Final Take
Lauren Johnson is associate reporter on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York

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