Back 3 minute read

No Child’s Play: Why Is Bearbrick So Popular & Expensive

No Child’s Play: Why Is Bearbrick So Popular & Expensive 3

Why is Bearbrick so popular? What is so special about it? Why is Bearbrick so expensive?

Many have asked these questions when they first encounter the charming yet enigmatic plastic figurines known as Bearbrick.

Launched over two decades ago, these seemingly simple toys have taken the worlds of art and fashion by storm, becoming one of the most fervently desired collectables in recent history.

Not Just Another Toy Story: What Is Bearbrick

Bearbrick is a collectible toy designed and produced by a Japanese company called Medicom Toy Incorporated.

Introduced in 2001, Bearbricks are typically made of plastic and are about 7cm-tall, although they also come in different sizes. The name “Bearbrick” comes from the fact that the design of the toy is a cartoon-style representation of a bear and that it’s shaped like a brick.

Each figurine feature a simple bear-like form with a pot belly, with each limb able to be moved independently. One of its iconic aspects is its design, which varies widely from series to series. They can include collaborations with famous artists, designers, and brands.

Bearbricks are released in series that often include different themes or collaborations. Some Bearbricks are incredibly rare, with limited edition releases very highly sought after by collectors, leading to high resale prices.

Bearbricks remain a popular collectible and are considered a significant aspect of modern pop and street culture.

The Pricey Bear Hug: How Bearbrick Captured Hearts and Wallets

So, why is Bearbrick so popular? And why is it so expensive?

While it may seem like Bearbrick is merely selling plastic bears, it’s their marketing that’s the real game-changer. Its popularity and high price are due to a well-orchestrated symphony of strategic marketing manoeuvres, underpinned by a deep understanding of its target demographics.

The brand leverages the universal appeal of its design, combined with limited editions and collaborations with renowned artists and high-end brands, to create a sense of rarity and exclusivity. Each Bearbrick becomes a coveted work of art, pushing its price tag to match the high demand.

Bearbrick’s story is a powerful case study for any brand seeking to elevate its product from the ordinary to the extraordinary. It’s not just about the product but the experience, prestige, status, and sense of belonging that comes with owning a piece of the Bearbrick universe.

Marketing Lessons We Can Learn From Bearbrick On Why It Is So Popular & Expensive

When collecting becomes a rage, even the most extraordinarily simple items can become cherished collectables. Bearbrick is one example, having disrupted the toy industry like nothing else.

But what’s so appealing about a bear-shaped plastic figurine? Let’s find out.

1. Collaborations are key

Probably the biggest reason why Bearbrick is so popular is its collaborations with various brands. This has played a significant role in propelling them to such great heights and expensive prices. By partnering with major fashion houses, artists, and even luxury beauty brands, Bearbrick has positioned itself as a chic and fashionable collectable, far beyond just a simple toy.

A notable example of this is the collaboration between Lancôme and Bearbrick. The two brands launched a new beauty experience, creatively driven by a graffiti aesthetic injected into Lancôme’s house codes, notably its logo, rose, and signature Ô2. Collaborations like these are why we now see an increase in Bearbrick’s visibility and enhance its prestige and value, leading to a higher price point.

As Bearbrick has been adopted by various fashion houses and designers across the globe, the toy has become a canvas for international design sensibilities. This global appeal and cross-cultural adaptation underline the importance of effective cross-culture marketing strategies.

2. The allure of simplicity

Another reason why is Bearbrick so popular is due to its simple design. Although the bear design remains constant, each Bearbrick is a unique canvas, reflecting the aesthetic impressionability of modern art and dynamic luxury fashion. Some of the world’s biggest fashion houses and designers have adopted Bearbrick to showcase their latest designs and projects, contributing to its widespread popularity.

Bearbrick’s design’s simplicity sparks creativity and transcends language and cultural barriers, appealing to a global audience. It’s a testament to the power of minimalistic design and its significant role in marketing. The simple yet versatile design of Bearbrick is a key factor in why it is so popular, allowing it to stand out in a crowded market and creating a product that is both accessible and desirable.

3. Variety in size 

Bearbricks aren’t one-size-fits-all, which is why they have such esteemed popularity and cost. Bearbricks come in a variety of sizes, ranging from the pocket-friendly 35mm size (or 50% on the Bearbrick size scale), often sold as keychains, to the towering 700mm (or 1000%) size, the largest Bearbrick size available. Most collectors, however, seem to prefer the 400% and 1000% sizes, which stand 280mm and 700mm tall, respectively.

The size variety caters to different types of collectors and budgets, making the product accessible to a wider audience. At the same time, the larger, more prominently displayed Bearbricks serve as status symbols, commanding higher prices. This flexibility in size is another example of how Bearbrick’s marketing strategy has successfully made them more popular and expensive.

Like POP MART, another successful player in the toy industry, Bearbrick has used innovative marketing strategies to boost its popularity and sales. To understand more about such successful marketing strategies in the toy industry, learn more about POP MART’s Marketing Strategy.

4. Exclusivity and scarcity 

One might wonder why something as simple as a plastic bear-shaped figurine would be expensive. The answer lies in the clever marketing strategy of exclusivity and scarcity. Despite being moderately priced initially, these plastic figurines become immensely valuable to collectors. Some Bearbricks are sold for tens of thousands at auctions, earning the moniker of an “adult collectable toy”.

The exclusivity is heightened by limited editions and rare designs, making each Bearbrick feel unique and special. This exclusivity fuels the desire to collect, pushing demand and the price higher. The expensive tag of Bearbrick is not just about the product; it’s about the experience, prestige, and status of owning a rare, coveted item. This strategy of cultivating exclusivity and scarcity is why Bearbrick is so popular.

5. 360-degree campaigns 

Comprehensive marketing campaigns, often called 360-degree campaigns, have been another driving force behind Bearbrick’s popularity. These campaigns aim to create a holistic customer experience across all platforms, from social media and digital platforms to e-commerce and retail experiences.

For example, the Lancôme and Bearbrick collaboration was deployed as a 360° campaign, creating a comprehensive and immersive experience for consumers. This approach allows Bearbrick to reach a wider audience, increase its visibility, and foster stronger customer engagement, contributing to its popularity and high price.

Let First Page Help You Move Forward With Effective Marketing Strategies Like Bearbrick 

If you want to implement effective marketing strategies like Bearbrick to drive your brand’s popularity and value, consider seeking professional help. Check out our digital marketing services at First Page to elevate your brand to new heights. Contact us today to learn more.

Suggested Articles