Barbie and toy engagement

As the Barbie movie sees huge success we explore how Britain's children engage with Barbie toys today as well as toys generally
18 August 2023
Dolls and toys
James Powell

Marketing Director, UK & Ireland

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The Barbie movie has emerged as the film of this summer, hitting over a billion dollars in ticket sales just 17 days after its release, joining a select group comprising just five other films since the pandemic to have seen such sales.

Perhaps we should not be surprised given the popularity of Barbie as a toy enjoyed by young children in Britain. Our latest Youth TGI data reveals that 29% of Britain’s 7-10 year olds (904,000 individuals) claim to have a Barbie at home. This is higher than the proportion with Harry Potter toys (26%) or Pokemon (24%). – however it is still a far cry from the overall most commonly owned toys by this age group, which is headed – by some distance – by Lego.

However, when it comes to the toys 7-10 year olds like best, Barbie ranks higher, sitting in fourth place from a list of almost 50 toys, beaten only by Nerf, art & craft sets and Lego.

Toy fans

Toys and games as a whole top the list of what 7-10 year olds claim to spend their money on. 

A far higher proportion of children spend on these than on the likes of confectionery and snacks or video games, which make up the remainder of the most popular three items on which money is spent.

Toy fans

You would expect toys and games to drop off the top spot for where money is spent when it comes to older age groups.

Indeded, Youth TGI shows that for 11-14 year olds crisps/sweets/chocolate, drinks and going out take the top three spots for spending money. 

Nevertheless, 11% of 11-14 year olds (336,000 individuals) claim to spend their money on toys and games.
When it comes to engaging these 7-10 year olds who claim to spend money on toys and games, TGI reveals that a giveaway via a magazine could be an efficient means to engage them as they are 20% more likely than the average 7-10 year old to say they like magazines with free gifts on the cover.

Toy fans

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