What is it that you remember most about your Christmas shopping experience last year? If you spent a lot of time hanging around kids toy stores to buy stuff for your kids, standing in line could be your one outstanding memory.
When you go in on the last weekend before Christmas to shop for toys and the whole store seems like a heaving mass of humanity, how often wonder why no one can come in during a weekday? Does everyone have to come in on a weekend just like you?
There's a reason why everyone comes in during the weekend and not during the week. When it comes to toys that are in high demand, they just don't have them in stock during the week.
It's not that they are in short supply; the toy stores hide them in storage until the weekend comes. Why on earth would they do such a thing?
They feel that weekend shoppers have more money to spend and more time to look around. They are likely, they feel, to spend more money when they have more time.
They want the best toys out when people come with in with a lot of time on their hands. What other fast ones are the kids toy stores trying to pull on you? Read on.
Toymakers and kids toy stores have to advertise their products in a way that will reach your children. If you've been keeping your child away from unwholesome and repetitive TV and print advertising for toys, the toymakers know what you are doing. They advertise to your child through school.
Kids toy stores know also that when a kid walks into one of their stores, they need to take full advantage of their ability to throw tantrums. A child is the best sales rep that a toys store can have.
Right at the entrance to any major toy store, they'll have a huge attractive display to do with the latest movie that's doing the circuit - a Harry Potter movie, the latest Toy Story or Shrek movie, and so on.
These are toys that give the store a pretty generous margin. They want to tackle the child as soon as he gets into the store so that the entire time the kid is in the store with a parent, he'll be pestering the parent for what he just saw at the entrance.
How exactly do you decide on what toy to get your child - if your child is too young to be influenced by advertising? Of course, you look at some magazine list of what the hot toys are.
Did you ever think of how toys could be hot if they were really too new to have a real reputation, and if the children they were aimed at were too young to actually demand them?
Those lists are prepared by industry groups. They look at what movies are coming out, they ask the manufacturers about everything they have planned for the holidays, and make a list to serve the toy manufacturers.
Those lists have nothing to do with what will make your child happy. There are lots of toys that place themselves on those lists, and become popular just because they become popular.