Barbie Rolls Out Digital Film To Woo New Age Parents

Mattel's Barbie unveils a new digital film for millennial parents, where 5 little girls imagine everything they want to be - a professor, a vet, a paleontologist, a businesswoman and a soccer coach


Love Barbie dolls or not, but you will still love little girls just being themselves. The 56-year-old doll brand from Mattel is now appeasing the new-age parent, the one who’s more digitally engaged than the earlier generation of parents, and the one who’s more inclined to watch a video with little girls in it, rather than an advertisement for a doll.

Barbie has faced flak over the years for her weird body proportions that hardly resemble the average female body. The company has faced the brunt of many campaigns against the doll and how it misleads little girls into growing up with eating and other psychological disorders. So the brand is reviving Barbie by going back to where it all started – the brand vision by Ruth Handler, the Founder of Barbie’.

“My whole philosophy of Barbie was that, through the doll, the little girl could be anything she wanted to be. Barbie always represented the fact that a woman has choices.”

Now Mattel has got together a bunch of little girls to essay adult roles enacting what they wanted to be when they grew up. Hidden cameras capture real reactions to girls imagining everything they might one day become. The work is created by BBDO San Francisco, BBDO New York work and Slim Pictures.

‘Imagine the possibilities’ features five little girls in five locations, each smartly acting it out as a professor, a vet, a soccer coach, a palaeontologist and a businesswoman. The girls’ lines were not scripted and the responses by the adults are natural.

Barbie is also taking people back in time through its social media channels. Every Thursday, the brand is sharing a  “throw back” content where users can savour some of the most notable days in Barbie’s history celebrating the limitless potential of all girls.

Wooing new age parents

Videos with little girls are always adorable, and when they act pretty well in professional spaces occupied by adults, the video is bound to go viral. The little palaeontologist sharing information about pre-historic dinosaurs or the little college professor teaching about the brain is highly difficult to avoid.

Barbie is getting a new lease of life with new age branding. The dolls no more do the talking but it’s the little girls who talk for the brand that desperately wants to woo millennial parents. Play acting with Barbie is not a ‘dumb’ thing to do for little girls, but helps shape their future career path.

Besides, bringing back its founder’s vision of ‘woman can have choices’ is a digital win, especially in a world that is keenly observing brand messages and how it benefits consumers’ lives. It reinforces what the brand has been telling the world always – “You can be anything”. If only millennial parents would buy this though!