#298: Pudgy Toys' Continued Retail Expansion

PLUS: 📺 Doodles YouTube growth, a great RWA dashboard, Circle's new ad campaign

Today’s piece will be more of a roundup of interesting observations and insights around the space. More topics but shorter. I’ll let the longer pieces be long if I think they deserve it or if I’m appropriately inspired. LMK what you think, let’s get to it

Pudgy Penguins continues its retail expansion

It’s crazy to think that just one year ago, Pudgy Penguins launched their Pudgy Toys line on Amazon. Since then, Pudgy Toys has expanded into:

Over the past two weeks, the retail expansion hit another wave of announcements:

  • Target (May 12)

  • GameStop (May 13). The timing of this one was impeccable considering this was during all the GameStop memestock hubbub

  • Lotte in Korea (May 16th)

  • Big W in Australia (May 19)

Some notes on these expansion efforts:

The videos feature different Pudgy Penguins

The announcement videos from Target and Lotte feature different Pudgies from the collection. The Target toys include licensed Penguins from the community, facilitated by the community’s own OverpassIP platform.

Featuring NFTs from the community creates a near-endless number of assets to keep the creative fresh and in the case of these partnerships, another way to give a nod to the community members.

The Lotte partnership may be more than toys

For me, the name rings a bell because they’re big in the Asian snack business.

It doesn’t stop there though…Lotte is a South Korean conglomerate that owns and operates department stores, movie theaters, a construction arm, hotels, two baseball teams, and more. This partnership may involve Pudgy Toy retail expansion, but my gut tells me that’s only one part of it.

OverpassIP shows how licensing from the community can be done effectively

We’re now seeing how the platform works end-to-end, several months after it launched in January.

Since its launch, Overpass has created several more licensing deals:

On top of the Overpass licensing pipeline, the team will be at the Las Vegas Licensing Expo again, with a significantly more robust resume.

All of this is on top of the brand’s relentless social media growth:

Are Pudgy Penguins cute? If so, share or subscribe!

On the note of character IP

Doodles has been crushing it on the social media side of things as well, but on a different channel: YouTube Shorts.

A couple weeks ago, Ingli Erlingsson (Chief Content Officer, another CCO lol) shared that the Doodles YT account reached the 100k subscriber milestone in about a month and insights into how they got there. To summarize:

  • There was a lot of iteration and small tweaks that led to the success that the team is seeing today

  • Audiences are different on each channel, and they’ll react differently. A flop on one channel may be a success on another due to demo and geo differences

  • Consistency is key and quality > quantity

This was posted on May 8, ~2 weeks ago. So where is Doodles now with their YT sub growth? 157k, suggesting that their rate of growth is at minimum consistent (~100k per month) with the rate of growth increasing slightly. Content and the corresponding growth rate is a hits-driven business, and with a proper formula the chance of creating a hit increases.

Taking a sample of the last 12 YT Shorts, we see that 8 of them got more than 1M views. Talk about a high hit rate 👀

In the growth world there’s the saying that ‘if something is working, keep doubling down until it doesn’t work anymore’. That’s what Doodles seems to be doing (they’re cross-posting on other social channels but YT is leading channel for now), and you love to see it paying off.

A great RWA dashboard

I came across a great RWA (real-world asset) dashboard that provides an overview of what’s going on in that vertical.

On top of the pretty charts, they have a nice company directory and research blog. Go check them out!

Circle’s new ad campaign

Earlier today, Circle (the issuer of the USDC stablecoin) launched a new ‘Money is now open’ campaign along with a revamped website, which I’m assuming is a part of their IPO preparation efforts.

I’m a sucker for these ad campaigns (like Coinbase’s pizza ad) because they make crypto relatable, even if you don’t know anything about it. Cheers to another great ad, and I hope to see more of them for the newcomers and curious folks.

See you Thursday!

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