Segmentation in the Toy market (from BBC)

How could you segment the toy market?

Boys, Girls, Toddlers, Pre-schoolers, Tweens, Teens. Upper, middle and lower income. Classic mass-market demographic segmentation, right?

How about adult senior citizens? Japanese firms like Nintendo and Tomy have discovered a large, affluent and lucrative customer segment for toys by designing offerings targeted at the over-60 set.

Tomy, which is best known for making Transformers, designed a talking robotic doll which tells its owner how much it loves her and welcomes her home when she walks back into the house. The majority of buyers are retired women who live alone.

While there isn't any information about how Tomy developed this innovation, I'd bet a large sum that it comes down to observing what Peter Drucker called the "unexpected" source of innovation.

Another toy company that has tailored its products for adults is Nintendo. Its "Brain Training Game" has been a hit in Japan with people over the age of 60 who believe it will keep them mentally agile. The handheld computer game presents a series of puzzles based on mathematics and Japanese spelling. It also allows players to keep score of how sharp their responses are.

What lucrative, unexpected customer segments might you be missing in your market or business? And how could you go about finding them?

Via Putting People First.
Full story on BBC.

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