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In November 2001, a team from Tonka was working toward the early spring launch of Tonka Junior, a new brand targeted to infants and toddler boys. This expanded line of trucks and vehicles needed a unique positioning that really resonated with moms—and it had to be developed quickly.
With a strong brand identity to build on, the Tonka team wanted to delve into what moms of boys aged 1-3 really think and what drives them to buy toys. Using the Ideas To Go creative problem solving process, the Tonka team spent a day talking with and listening to a select group of mothers and grandmothers of infants and toddlers. These Creative Consumers® associates generated hundreds of positioning ideas focused on what it's like to have boys, how the play patterns of young boys differ from those of girls, and what parents wish for in engaging toys.
After the ideation session, the team narrowed the targeted ideas down to the three strongest positioning possibilities, then chose one to move forward with one that best fit their equity. The positioning resulted in an acclaimed television spot and a successful launch of the line, as well as The Tonka Junior Search For America’s Toughest One-Year-Old, with the winning toddler awarded Tonka Junior Prizes and $5,000 Savings Bond.