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Press release content from Globe Newswire. The AP news staff was not involved in its creation.

Horizon Media Study Finds Consumer Interest in Gender-Fluid Toys Make Sense But Not Cents

November 4, 2019 GMT

NEW YORK, Nov. 04, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Horizon Media, the world’s largest independent media agency, today announced findings of its ongoing Finger On The pulse poll. This week the topic of the poll was gauging consumer sentiment around Mattel’s recent release of gender-neutral Barbie Dolls. Horizon’s Finger On The Pulse (FOTP) study finds that although the new product has generated increased awareness, consumers are still skeptical and this awareness is unlikely to translate into a significant increase in consideration or purchase.

Mattel recently released a new line of gender-neutral dolls and Horizon’s FOTP poll set out to find out what people think of them. Of the choices listed, people are most likely to feel that this offering from Mattel isn’t genuine: 35% think this is just a marketing ploy. However, over a quarter of people have a positive outlook when it comes to the idea of gender neutrality for toys, and 21% believe that brands have a responsibility to offer these kinds of inclusive products.

Despite peoples’ interest theoretically, they aren’t very likely to take the step of purchasing one of these dolls for the holidays for a girl (5%) or boy (4%) in their family, and just 4% are more likely to buy from Mattel as a result. Even some of those who may be likely to consider the purchase are not confident that kids would be intrigued: 9% say they don’t think boys would play with these, and 5% still think only kids who identify as female or gender-fluid would be interested. And there are still detractors: 18% think dolls should only be for girls.

Openness to gender neutral toys follows the pattern that many may expect: younger people, women, West-coasters, and Democrats are all more likely to be for it. Men, Southerners, and Republicans are all more likely to buy into the belief that boys should not play with dolls. And it’s affluent people that place the most responsibility on brands to push gender neutrality forward.

The study is part of Horizon Media’s weekly Finger On The Pulse poll that continuously tracks and polls how news and cultural events can shape or shift people’s thinking and behavior. Horizon also fields custom poll research for journalists and publishers across a variety of topics to make their stories and content more informed by the most recent and relevant consumer opinion data.

About Horizon Media Horizon Media, Inc. is the largest independent media agency in the world. The company was founded in 1989, is headquartered in New York, and has offices in Los Angeles and Toronto. With estimated billings of $8.7 billion and over 2,300 employees, Horizon is the second largest U.S. media agency according to COMvergence data.

Recognized as one of the world’s ten most innovative marketing and advertising companies by Fast Company, Horizon Media has been named Media Agency of the Year by MediaPost, Adweek and AdAge and is known for its highly personal approach to client service. Renowned for its culture, Horizon is also consistently named to all the prestigious annual Best Places to Work lists published by Fortune, Forbes, AdAge, Crain’s New York Business and Los Angeles Business Journal; including “Best Workplaces for Diversity,” “Best Workplaces for Women,” and “Best Workplaces for Millennials” honors.

Earning the industry’s highest honor, Bill Koenigsberg, President, CEO and Founder of Horizon Media, was inducted into the American Advertising Federation (AAF) Hall of Fame in 2019.

For further information please contactHorizon Media Stephen Hall(212) 220-1744 shall@horizonmedia.com