5 Tips for Creating Events for Kids

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When it comes to designing kid-friendly events, creating a relevant strategy can be complicated. Mom and dad need to recognize your brand’s value proposition, but eliciting that important “pester power”makes engaging kids equally important.


Here are five tips for mastering the art of the children’s event.


1. Don’t Dodge Technology


Don’t let age get in the way of incorporating relevant technology into your event. Kids these days are digital natives, after all. Just be sure to keep it simple, like Thomas and Friends did on its summer “Play Station” tour, which featured nine kid-friendly engagements. The brand leveraged motion gesture technology to get youngsters’ brains and bodies moving as they attempted to reveal images of hidden engines on a digital screen.


2. Make it Competitive


Most kids are eager to challenge their peers (and themselves), making gamified experiences an effective way to connect with them. That was LEGO’s strategy this summer as the brand touted its Ninjago franchise with an “American Ninja Warrior”-style obstacle course that brought the game to life. The program initially allowed local kids to compete against one another, then expanded its scope to include cross-country rivalry after the brand flew seven winning teams from around the U.S. to the Legoland California Resort for a championship game.


3. Keep it Gender-Neutral


From Mattel ads featuring boys playing with Barbies to Toys “R” Us and Target removing gender-based labeling in their stores, contemporary brands are keeping with the times by offering experiences that are free of gender stereotypes. In the era of Caitlyn Jenner, gender-specific products and experiences are outdated and that’s the last thing a brand wants to be known for.


4. Teach Them a Lesson


Implementing interactive educational activities is a healthy way to keep kids occupied while illustrating your brand’s principles to parents. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt demonstrated the tactic flawlessly with its Curious World Tour. The mobile experience featured a Space Station where kids could build space shuttles and learn about constellations and a Story Camp where they sat on tree-trunk stools for story time, among an array of other educational activities. Bonus: Take-home materials for parents described what kids learned throughout the experience so the learning could continue at home.


5. Play by the Rules


Marketing to children is a touchy matter—kids are an important demo but their impressionable nature makes them vulnerable. In addition to adhering to the FTC’s rules and regulations for marketing to children, ensure your event marketing tactics are ethical. Make sure the information you present to kids is clear to avoid misleading them on the benefits of your product or service, and communicate with parents often.


Kids are a powerful demographic and can provide an authentic channel for connecting with parents. So stock up on juice boxes and get ready to engage the whole family.


Posted by Jane Hawley | Request as a Speaker

Determined biz dev guru. Motivated by meeting new people. Inspired by the potential of all brands. Health nut. Wine enthusiast. Soothed by sand and sea.