Fisher-Price Targets Young Cruisers and Their Parents

Posted on by Chief Marketer Staff

Fisher-Price and Royal Caribbean International have joined forces to entertain young children and their parents on board as well as via the cruise lines’ mobile marketing tour.

Beginning next month, Fisher-Price, which makes infant and preschool toys, will be onboard Royal Caribbean cruise ships with interactive educational sessions. The sessions will be set up in freestanding environments using matting, visuals, toys and instructors. Fisher-Price piloted the program in October after the cruise line saw a more than 50% increase in the number of children under three that were cruising with their parents. The stations are for children ages six months to three years old and their parents, which compliment the cruise line’s existing Adventure Ocean Youth Program for children ages three and up.

To promote the new offering, Fisher-Price is joining Royal Caribbean as it tours the country next year with its successful Ultimate Adventure Tour. The Fisher-Price Cabana is a 20-foot by 20-foot tented area set up outside a huge replica of the bow of one of Royal Caribbean’s cruise ships. Interactive stations are filled with Fisher-Price toys like Fun on the Farm, Creatures of the Deep and To the Rescue, where kids and their parents can play and learn about the toys while visiting the Royal Caribbean mobile unit. The look and feel of the station mirrors the onboard experience. Fisher-Price will also join Royal Caribbean at its trade show booths with two play space areas.

“Once we found our stride in what event marketing could be for us, we will continue to reach out to provide opportunities for our consumers to have this experiential interaction with our brand,” said Brenda Andolina, senior marketing manager, brand development, Fisher-Price.

The Royal Caribbean Ultimate Adventure tour started in the summer of 2003 using a 53-foot tracker trailer truck that opens to display a 84-foot by 52-foot replica of the bow of the line’s newest Voyager-class ship. Visitors can walk up the runway to find a 50-seat theater where they can watch a four-minute video on Royal Caribbean’s line of cruise ships and their amenities as well as vacation destinations. Visitors can also try out the line’s new rock-climbing wall, which was installed fleetwide last year. They can enter a sweepstakes, available at nearby kiosks, for a chance to win a seven-day cruise for two or sign up for a Royal Caribbean Platinum Visa card to earn points toward merchandise, onboard amenities, upgrades, cruise discounts and free cruises.

The mobile unit, handled by Snap Marketing, New York City, has appeared at everything from art festivals to large-scale concerts and kicks off 2005 by visiting the Rosemont Conference Center in Chicago on Jan. 7 where a travel expo will be held. The tour will make 34 stops next year before coming to a close in October.

The play stations and mobile tour are touted on both companies’ Web sites and via marketing collateral such as brochures.

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