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The Power of a Toy

A couple of days ago, we had a photographer at the office to take updated pictures of the lawyers at the firm. They told me that I couldn’t use a picture that was taken of me wearing a cowboy hat… that was taken 10 years ago!

It’s crazy how that works. I remember looking at that picture after it was taken and thinking that it was a terrible picture. Now, it looks a whole lot better!

It’s also why I always say that people getting married should eat as often, and as fast, and as much food as they can before they get married. That way, throughout the years, as friends come into their home and see those pictures, they will most certainly hear the remark, “you look so much thinner now!”.

Despite my wishes for the cowboy hat photo, my picture was also just taken for our website. We are working on a website update.  That’s because social media and online marketing have become just as, or even more important than television advertising. And I am still a big believer in TV advertising.

That brings me to a story about advertising that was published in the Journal of Pediatrics and discussed on It’s titled Fast food TV ads influence a child’s restaurant choice. It is a researched explanation on the influence on where families end up eating, and why.

A new study shows that the more frequently that a child sees a fast food advertisement that involves receiving a free toy, the more likely that a family eats at that restaurant in that “free toy” TV ad. According to the study, 79% of all fast food ads targeting children  usually appear on only 4 TV networks.

For the study, researchers enlisted 100 children between the ages of 3-7. At the time, they found only two nationally recognized fast food restaurants that were directly targeting children in their ads.

In short, it was overwhelming from the study that children were asking to eat at those two fast food restaurants, causing the parents to also eat fast food. Out of the children in the study who received a toy with their food, those same children asked to go to both of the restaurants. Meaning, more fast food!

To further explain in the article, Jennifer Edmond of the Geisel School of Medicine says that because of the findings of the study, she now recommends that parents switch their child to commercial-free television programming to create a situation where the children will not pester their parents for fast food.

I guess less free toy advertising makes everyone healthier in the family, and it serves as a good advertisement for Netflix and Amazon programming!

And our pic o’ day:


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