Will the Next Generation of Fido’s Be Pixu’s?!

Our insights shows that, as pet ownership in the UK continues to decline, children are increasingly looking to the digital world to provide them with the opportunity to own a pet.

Urban dwelling is becoming more popular, house sizes are shrinking and renting is becoming more of a mainstay than home ownership. And all of these trends are having a knock on effect to the number of families now owning pets.

As “real life” pet ownership reduces, the desire for virtual pets is increasing.

Intelligent virtual pets with a personality, powered by artificial intelligence, are increasingly resonating with young kids and are plugging the pet ownership gap by providing children with emotional engagement.

Advancements in voice activation technology are bringing new innovation to this new world of digital ownership too.

According to our data, around 7% of young children report that voice activation is their preferred method to control their devices, and this is expected to increase exponentially over the next few years.

Some reports suggest that within the next 2 years, 50% of online searches will be done through voice activation, as children increasingly feel at ease with using their voice to control and interact with products in their ecosystem.

With recent changes in US legislation – enabling brands to build voice capability into children’s games and toys – we expect to see a significant increase in the number of smart toys, including pets, activated by voice commands.

Such toys already do exist in the market. Look at Hasbro’s robotic dog toy (Proto Max), which is part of the FurRealFriends line of animatronic pets that children can customize, enabling them to create “their ultimate pet and customise its personality” through coding on an app.

This innovation comes at the same time that Tamagotchi, the original and iconic 90s digital pet, is making a comeback with a mobile app complete with augmented reality features which bring the characters into the real-world.

The likes of Anki, a US based robotics company, are also part of a new wave of affordable toys that promise a level of ‘emotional engagement’, with toys such as Cosmo.

They may not be able to pat their new digital pets, but in time, they could be more common than you think…

To download a free copy of the Kids Insights Future Forecast report visit http://freereport.kidsinsights.co.uk/futureforecast/

New “Future Forecasts” report calls on brands to wake up to “dramatically shifting” needs of young consumers

Survey of 20,000 UK children reveals a number of predictions and emerging trends for 2018 and 2019, including:

  • Unfiltered opinion and authenticity – not a portrayal of perfection – could win child fans over
  • Despite the controversy, the rise of YouTube influencers may continue unabated
  • Toys and products may become ever-more gender neutral
  • Reading and publishing may undergo an innovation revolution
  • Younger generation – Generation Upgrade – could demand more sustainability in products
  • eSports could prove the next big opportunity for brands


Download the full report here

Brands and businesses selling products for children need to “up their game” in 2018 and beyond to cope with an environment that is “shifting dramatically”, according to the latest Future Forecasts report from Manchester-based market research and insights agency, Kids Insights.


The Kids Insights “Future Forecasts” report for 2018 and 2019, based on feedback from 20,000 young people over the course of the last 12 months, shows how brands are being forced to adapt to technological innovations, the demands of modern young consumers, the rise of YouTube superstars, and increasing need for gender neutrality across product ranges.


And according to Applied Futurist and broadcaster, Tom Cheesewright, “understanding how children are adopting and adapting to new technologies is hugely valuable” for brands desperate to recognise future trends early.


The Future Forecasts report comes as thousands of UK brands begin shaping their marketing, licencing, content and product development investments in 2018 and 2019.


“In the battle for children’s attention and ultimately their hearts and minds, innovation is increasingly critical,” said Nick Richardson, Futures Analyst at Kids Insight. “The brands which are enjoying success are those which are extremely responsive to the constantly developing and increasingly complex kids ecosystem.


“Trends are coming and going far quicker than ever before – and brands who are in tune with how children are behaving are able to turn these trends into opportunities rather than see them as risks. Brands that stand still are going to find it harder and harder to regain the attention of young consumers.”


The Future Forecasts report reveals that – although Virtual Reality (VR) was much heralded when it arrived on the gaming scene in 2017, it’s not expected to become commonplace in UK households until at least 2020.


And the data suggests VR could still be trumped by Augmented Reality (AR) for some time yet.


Future Forecasts author Nick Richardson said: “Apple is throwing its weight behind AR, and with our data showing that over half of all teenage mobile phone owners own an iPhone, the reach of AR could surge dramatically.


“Children’s favourite toys are also moving into the world of mixed reality with Nickelodeon recently announcing that it will be launching a range of Paw Patrol smart toys with AR capabilities, enabling fans to interact with their favourite characters in a different format. The Transformers world has also expanded into the augmented world so we think this is going to be the big breakthrough tech for 2018.


“Virtual reality devices have instead been aimed, so far, at use with high end devices, but cheaper, cardboard headsets could help them reach the mainstream.”


The Future Forecasts report also looked at trends around kids’ use of video games, social media and voice recognition. It found that most under 12s are consuming content that’s either deemed inappropriate for them or illegal, with more than half of all 4-6 year olds using some form of social media.


And when it comes to the video games boys aged 10-12 boys are playing, 60% of their favourites have an age rating of at least 16+, with Call of Duty, GTA and Assassin’s Creed all having a certificate rating of 18.


“With Facebook recently launching a ‘safer’ space for under 13s, will 2018 be the year that both platforms and content producers both recognise the specific requirements need for this age group and develop a proposition which tweens and young teens find appealing?” Nick added. “And with increased scrutiny on social media platforms it will be interesting to see how those platforms develop their propositions especially with the impact of GDPR legislation.”


The report discovered that kids are switching from typing to voice control, with almost one in four 4-6s and one in three 7-9s using the voice control function to control their tablet.


“We think that by 2020, 50% of all internet searches will be undertaken using voice control, with much of this growth coming from kids who find it natural to talk to Apple’s Siri or Amazon’s Alexa personal assistants.”


“Children aren’t just shaped by their parents, they also shape their parents’ views and behaviours,” said Applied Futurist and broadcaster, Tom Cheesewright. “Understanding how children are adopting and adapting to new technologies is hugely valuable in recognising future trends early.


“This Future Forecasts report adds new evidence to some key trends for tomorrow’s world: the primacy of augmented reality over virtual reality, the widespread adoption of voice as one of the key interfaces between us and our machines, and the growing diversity of online culture with the major esports each creating their own social tribes.”


The Future Forecasts 2018-2019 report, also reveals how young people are relating more to unfiltered opinion and authenticity – not a portrayal of perfection. And, despite some controversy, the rise of YouTube influencers continues to grow unabated.


It also predicts that toys and products will become ever-more gender neutral and more and more young people will become far more socially conscious, as the younger generation call for more sustainability in products.


Kids Insights’ experts also expect to see the rise of eSports continue in 2018 and beyond – and this could lead to an increase in the popularity of Twitch (the live streaming platform owned by Amazon), which, according to the latest data, is now watched by nine per cent of 16-18-year olds and entered the top ten for the first time.


Nick said: “As well as Twitch, more mainstream broadcasters such as BBC Three and Sky Sports are dedicating more screen time to cover eSports and properties, such as Formula 1, are investing heavily in their official eSports offering.


“We think eSports could be a £1bn global industry by 2020, with an audience of 600 million – many of these teens. As eSports become more main stream and integrated into traditional sports, the opportunities for properties, broadcasters and the licensing industry will become even more exciting.”


And the trend for innovation is likely to extend to books in 2018.


Nick said: “With the trend for co-creation continuing, where children no longer just wish to just consume, but instead to code and craft their own content – can books seek to innovate and tap into this trend?


“Using Augmented Reality technology with books could be one way to allow for wider experience with printed text. Utilising technology such as AR could help printed books reach an audience who are increasingly using screens and devices over books. We expect this to have an impact in engaging and enhancing creativity skills in children.”


To download a complimentary copy of Kids Insights Future Forecasts report visit http://freereport.kidsinsights.co.uk/futureforecast/.

A Sad Day…

Wednesday was a sad day, as we saw one of the biggest businesses in kids retail announce that it’s closing its doors for the final time; the end of Toys “R” Us.

One of the biggest sellers of toys to children over the last 20 years has gone into administration, and it should serve as a stark warning to anyone else selling products and services to children. If you fail to adapt to an ever-changing consumer market place, you will fail. See HMV. See BHS. Now you can add Toys “R” Us to that ever-growing list of business failures, and we don’t want to see any more.
Image removed by sender.

Kids Insights CEO, Nick Richardson, says “This further demonstrates what our researchers have been saying for the last 12 months: the toys category is getting smaller as tech continues to invade, and manufacturers and retailers need to innovate to continue to be relevant to kids and their ever-complex ecosystems.”

“It also underlines some inherent issues with the traditional toy business. It’s simply not agile enough to keep up to speed with the current pace of business. 18-month lead times are restricting innovation whilst other categories such as fashion and tech are developing new products from concept to consumer in just weeks!”

You see, there’s now less knowledge about what kids are interested in than ever before. Twenty years ago there were only five terrestrial channels and whilst digital channels existed they did not have the penetration which they do today.

The average house now has access to 190 TV channels excluding internet channels and YouTube, making it impossible for anyone to guess what Kids are watching.

Over the last 12 months our data has shown Toys “R” Us popularity reduce by around a fifth, which has no doubt being affected by their lack of investment instore and creating an experience which brands such as Smyths and Build A Bear Workshop have done so well.

You need stats, data and research to make sure your sales strategies, product development and marketing campaigns hit the ‘sweet spot’.

Advertising, marketing and making sales to kids is harder than ever because of a diverse audience that are spread thinly across many different interests, and Toys “R” Us have found out the hard way.

Our Kids Insights data is leading the way in all things Kids, Tweens and Teens, and if you haven’t take a trial of our dynamic portal or sampled our example reports, you need to click HERE and organise your 48-hour trial. It could be the best thing you do this year.

We survey over 400 children every week to find out exactly what they’re interested in, and our data is updated every single day, meaning it’s real-time and always up to date. All other once-a-year data reports are no longer fit for purpose, as they’re out of date 51 weeks of the year.

Click HERE to take your trial of our Kids Insights Portal now.

Here’s a quick snapshot of our Kids Insights Portal and Quarterly Reports. It’s real-time, dynamic, independent, and it’s waiting to be test-driven…

Talk soon,

The Kids Insights Team

Part of The Insights People Group

Almost a third of all children NEVER read, our latest research for World Book Day reveals

Almost a third of all children NEVER read, our latest research for World Book Day reveals

New insight from our research finds that almost one third of children (31 per cent) NEVER read and around 80 per cent of all 4-18 year olds spend little or nothing on books

Despite the findings, the special report shows that the number of children reading is actually rising – up by three per cent since last year – with paperbacks and hardbacks still far outweighing eBooks and audiobooks

Almost a third of under 18s NEVER read and eight out of ten spend little or nothing on books, our latest research shows.

Despite this, the report – compiling the views of more than 20,000 UK-based 4-18 year olds – found that the number of children reading was actually UP by three per cent on 2017.

The study found the most popular genres are fantasy (16 per cent) and comedy (15 per cent). Across all age groups, books about young wizard Harry Potter continue to prove the most spell-binding, as it topped the most read books during the last year, followed by Horrid Henry and the Gruffalo for 4-12 year olds, and Game of Thrones for 13-18 year olds.

Paperbacks (39 per cent) and hardback books (40 per cent) are still the most popular format for reading among children, with slight increases over the last 12 months. However, despite the technological revolution, the number of children reading online articles has dropped by six per cent over the year for 4-15 year olds, with eBooks, newspapers and audiobook readership all falling by between one to two per cent .

In fact, the use of technology for reading (eBooks and Audiobooks) remains relatively low.

eBooks were found to be a more popular platform amongst girls (14 per cent) than boys (8 per cent) and are most popular with children aged 13-18. Audiobooks however, whilst also more popular with girls than boys, are most popular with children aged 7-12.

Jonathan Watson, Product Manager here at Kids Insights, said:

“Reading is such an important part of children’s lives, and World Book Day is the perfect day to pick up a book and get stuck into new worlds and stories,” said Nick. “And although our data shows that plenty of young people are doing just that, there’s still a significant number who aren’t getting the huge range of benefits that reading brings with it.

“Some of the most popular books in our study, like Harry Potter, Horrid Henry or the Gruffalo, take readers on adventures that are unrivalled by TV or film and whether it’s through an old fashioned paperback or hardback or an eBook or a tablet, we hope more children take the chance to get reading in 2018.”

Despite one third of children never reading, girls of all ages did name reading as their favourite hobby. It polled 11 per cent of the vote across the age groups, beating drawing, dancing and listening to music.

But for boys, reading was well down the list, behind football, gaming and Lego for the under 12s, and beaten by football, gaming, swimming and listening to music in the 13-18-year-old category.

Worryingly, the report seems to suggest that young people struggle to combine an active lifestyle with a good book.

The report found that of the seven per cent of children who cited reading as their favourite hobby, almost half don’t attend any clubs (compared to 37 per cent of all children) and just nine per cent are members of a sports club.

The biggest influencers when it comes to reading choices are parents for the 4-12s (40 per cent); and friends (34 per cent), the internet (33 per cent) and social media (31 per cent) for 13-18 year olds.

Around 14 per cent of all children have visited a book shop over the last six months and of those, Primark and WH Smiths were named as the two favourite high street stores. Amazon came out top of the favourite online book retailer chart with 45 per cent of the vote.

The report found that kids that buy online are likely to spend more money on books and spend longer reading them.

“The trends revealed in our exclusive Kids Insight studies – including this one for World Book Day – are always really interesting,” Jonathan added. “And they paint an incredible picture for our customers of childrens’ habits and feelings on a whole range of topics. By polling 20,000 children every year we can truly understand what children really think about a huge range of topics and identify the trends as they emerge.

“And even though there are young people not experiencing the joys of reading, it’s encouraging to see the popularity of paperbacks and hardbacks increasing. It will be interesting to see how book publishers can utilise new technologies (such as augmented reality) to continue to engage this increasingly demanding audience who in many ways don’t just want to read the story but also want to co-create the story!”

If you’d like to find out more about Kids Insights and the incredible research they do, click HERE.

QUIZ: Do You Know Who’s Influencing Your Target Market?

Today on the Kids Insights Blog, we’ve got a quick quiz to test your knowledge of the influencers who carry the most pulling-power with your target market. Do you really know your influencers?

Here’s the questions with the answers below, including the data from our Kids Insights Portal to back those answers up…

Q1) Which personality is most popular with children aged 7-9 years old?

A) Ariane Grande

B) David Beckham

C) Lionel Messi

D) Dan TDM

E) Katy Perry


Dan TDM has risen above David Beckham as one of children aged 7-9s favourite celebrities, and is also above global superstars Katy Perry and Lionel Messi with this segment.


Most Popular Celebrity Of Children Aged 7-9

Q2) Which of these influencers is the most popular with teenage girls?

A) Kate Middleton

B) Miley Cyrus

C) Beyonce

D) Zoella

E) Kylie Jenner

ANSWER: Zoella

Zoella is now more popular than Beyoncé with teenage girls. More YouTube superstars are breaking into the list of children’s favourite famous people and even climbing above some of the world’s most recognisable celebrities.

Q3) Which of these influencers is most popular with girls aged 4-9?

A) Kim Kardashian

B) The Queen

C) Beyonce

D) JoJo Siwa

E) Harry Styles


JoJo Siwa is up threefold with girls 4-9 between Q3 of 2017 and now. The YouTube influencer is steadily growing in followers and we predict that the trend will continue into 2018.

How did you get on? Is your knowledge of the important influencers for your target market as good as it needs to be?

Kids Insights is leading the way in market intelligence – The dynamic Kids Insights Portal holds unrivalled information on what kids are talking about, eating, playing with, watching, spending their time on and more.

Comprehensive and dynamic – We survey 400 children every week and update our portal every hour, meaning you know the market trends before any of your competitors.

Used by some of the biggest brands in the children’s marketplace – DC Thomson, Egmont, Finsbury Foods, Guinness World Records, Penguin Random House, Super Awesome and Turner are all using Kids Insights to understand more about their target market.

Access to the only form of real-time market intelligence in the UK – No other company is providing up-to-the-minute insights. Relying on an annual report means that your market intelligence is out of date for 51 weeks of the year. That never happens with Kids Insights as you’re always up to speed with real-time data.

Take A Tour Of The UK’s Most Powerful Market Intelligence Tool For Free

We’d like to invite you to take a free, two-day trial of Kids Insights so that you can see for yourself just how much it could impact the results of your marketing campaigns.

Click HERE to watch the video and fill in the form to request your FREE trial of Kids Insights.

Talk soon,

The Kids Insights Team




Where’s the Kinder Egg McFlurry in your business?

If you’re spending money on marketing to kids, then you need to know about the Kinder Egg McFlurry. It’s going to make your day…

Just last week it came to our attention that the biggest fast food chain in the world are missing an even bigger trick. They’re also missing out on a large chunk of revenue.

We’ve just produced our quarterly Kids Insights research report to our clients, giving them the key insights into what children aged 4-18 are interested in right now.

Our clever, dynamic data has shown us that the kids whose favourite restaurant is McDonalds also love Kinder Eggs. So, it’s staggering that McDonald’s haven’t got a Kinder Egg McFlurry! Here’s a quick screenshot of our dynamic data…

So, where’s the Kinder Egg McFlurry hiding in your business?

The truth is that most businesses are sitting on a HUGE opportunity right now – they just can’t see it. They’re using outdated research from small pools of people.

Here at Kids Insights, we’re surveying over 400 children this week (we’ve done 20,000 in the last year!), and that means we have real-time information – not a year old like most other data research companies. We have up-to-the-minute information on what your target audience want, and you can take a look at one of our sample reports right here.

What discoveries might you make with Kids Insights real-time data?

We’re the driving force behind the marketing campaigns of some big brands, including DC Thomson, Super Awesome, Turner, Walker Books and Penguin Random House.

Take a look at this video where we show you around our Kids Insights Portal, where you’re in full control to interrogate the data for yourself. You can build your own queries and carry out your own analysis.

Click HERE to watch the video.

The Latest Innovation in Market Insights Industry – FREE REPORT

As we all know, the world is moving faster than ever. With the rise of the internet, mobiles, social media and TV on demand, trends come and go in the blink of an eye.

A Marketers Job is Now More Difficult Than Ever

We’re in unprecedented times where kids have more access to media, more choices and more control and as a marketer it’s more difficult than ever to keep up.

The Old Way of Doing It Just Won’t Cut it Any More

Despite the fact times have changed, the market insights industry has not. You have to ask yourself, is surveying 1000 kids and producing 1 annual report enough anymore? When you’re faced with making an informed decision, you need relevant information, not something which was out of date as soon as it was printed.

A Better Way

At Kids Insights, we survey 400 kids a week to find out what they’re interested in. From what they’re watching, to what they’re playing with, eating and how they’re relaxing… That’s 20,000 kids a year and over 2,600,000 data points. We compile that data and analyse it to provide you with 16 comprehensive reports a year.

Click HERE to get a FREE sample report.

A New Way – Real Insights in Real Time

We’re also delighted to announce the launch of our online portal which puts you in full control to interrogate the data for yourself. You can build your own queries and carry out your own analysis.

Click HERE and fill out the form to request a free trial of the Kids Insights portal.

Don’t Just Take Our Word For It

We’re already working with DC Thomson, Super Awesome, Walker Books, Turner and Penguin Random House to provide real-time data and insights for their marketing campaigns.


The Children’s Media Conference Column by Kids Insights

New Feature: An update from Kids Insights. Dan TDM is now more popular than David Beckham with young boys, but who will the next YouTube superstar be?

Kids Insights, the UK’s most comprehensive and dynamic market intelligence resource on all things kids, tweens and teens have teamed up with The Children’s Media Conference to provide a regular column.

Kids Insights will be providing regular commentary and updates based on the 20,000 children they survey across the year.


Over the last few months, Kids Insights have seen more YouTube superstars breaking into the list of children’s favourite famous people and even climbing above some of the world’s most recognisable celebrities.

Zoella is now more popular than Beyoncé with teenage girls and JoJo Siwa (age 14) has leapt ahead of Harry Styles with young girls aged 4-12.

Dan TDM has risen above David Beckham as one of boys aged 4-12s favourite celebrities, and is close to global superstars Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi with this segment.

Our data shows that YouTube reaches an average 70% of teenagers, showing why YouTube influencers are playing an increasingly important part of brands’ strategic marketing plans.


To discover more, including which new YouTubers children are watching this month, REGISTER for access to Kids Insights online data portal. Kids Insights dynamic portal enables you to interrogate and filter all their data to your own specific requirements.

With 400 children surveyed weekly, that’s over 50,000 data points added into the database every single week.

iPhone Ownership Growing?

Kids Insight’s data has shown that iPhone ownership in teenagers has increased recently, particularly with 13-15s where 47% now own an iPhone, compared to 43% in Q3 2017. Over the same period, Samsung ownership has fallen from 28% to 24% with this segment.

However, interestingly Samsung mobile phones have overtaken iPhones to become the most popular phone with 4-9s. Although, this is a smaller market, with 20% ownership rates.

Surveying 20,000 children per annum, Kids Insights add data from 400 kids aged 4-18 every single week, thus providing you with access to this insight in ‘real-time’ through the online portal.

For a free sample report and free 2-day trial to Kids Insights unique online data portal, providing real insights in real time, click here: https://goo.gl/dELYjG

Kids Insights Become Corporate Supporter for The Children’s Media Foundation

Kids Insights, the UK’s most comprehensive and dynamic market intelligence resource on all things kids, tweens and teens are proud to announce a partnership with The Children’s Media Foundation.

The Children’s Media Foundation (CMF) is an advocacy body for the children’s audience that campaigns to ensure the greatest possible variety and choice of media is available for UK kids. They liaise between the children’s media industry, regulators and policy makers and they encourage a research-based approach to regulation, policy development and decision making.  The Children’s Media Foundation will now utilise the Kids Insights real-time data portal to inform its campaign activity.

Managing Director of Kids Insights, Nick Richardson was delighted at the partnership:

“We are absolutely delighted to be working with The Children’s Media Foundation. As the leading specialist of Kids Insights in the UK, I believe we have a responsibility to support The Children’s Media Foundation and the important campaigning and lobbying which they do”

For a free 2-day trial to Kids Insights’ unique online portal, or for more information please visit www.kidsinsights.co.uk.