Toy industry insiders may still be looking for the first massive hit toy line to spawn from a Netflix original series, but content from the streaming giant appears to be driving sales for one of the most famous existing brands in toys: Barbie.
According to The NPD Group, the second season of Barbie Dreamhouse Adventures and the feature-lengthy Barbie Princess Adventure managed to cause a spike in overall Barbie viewership for Netflix and influenced a spike in the doll aisle.
Juli Lennett, toy industry advisor at The NPD Group, says that the Barbie Dreamhouse ranked among the top 10 fastest-selling toys in the U.S. from March to September.
“The latest season of Barbie Dreamhouse Adventures debuted on Netflix in March, right when stay-at-home orders began and families with kids started watching a lot more streaming video,” she says. “While we can’t attribute the subsequent success in toys directly to increased Netflix viewing, given that the pandemic shelter-at-home orders likely played a role, there is a correlation.”
The recent streaming success for Mattel mirrors statements made by Hasbro Chairman and CEO Brian Goldner back in February in relation to the steady availability of evergreen content on Disney+ invigorating sales for Disney Princess and Frozen toys.