Why Moshi Monsters has become so successful – by Mind Candy CEO Michael Acton Smith in this year’s Branding Expo, Europe.
1. “‘Moshi Monsters’ players drive development. We work hard to get the audience involved; we constantly ask for opinions, for ideas, for feedback. For example we recently had thousands of ideas submitted when we asked about trading cards. When we use a suggestion, we always do our best to give the kids the credit for their ideas, giving them social currency to show off in front of their friends.”
2. “We use many different channels to promote and grow Moshi Monsters, and we’ll always make brave choices if we think it’s best for the brand. For example, many people told us not to move into print, telling us we’d be better off sticking to our core digital offering. Despite this, we launched Moshi Monsters magazine, which is now the number one children’s title in the UK.”
3. “We never rest, we are always evolving the Moshi Monsters world, adding new content to ensure the brand remains fresh and exciting. Being digitally based allows us the flexibility to iterate quickly and continuously introduce new characters in real time, something that is restricted by the production processes of film and TV. We have now built up to over 200 hugely popular characters.
Our content can be easily tweaked depending on its popularity. This is the appeal to kids – they have control of this world in a way they just don’t in the real world, so rather than a media owner telling them what they will and won’t like, they make those choices.”
4. Moshi Monsters has an exceptional marketing team, covering live events, PR and brand marketing. But even more importantly, we have the product right. Between 2007 and 2009 we had very little marketing, because we knew product was the key – in my experience marketing is often used to mask problems … it was realizing the kids want social interaction online just as much as adults, so we overlay digital game with ways to connect, share and talk about it.
5. “We make sure we are the best licensing partner we can possibly be, responding quickly and approving or suggesting ideas as proactively as we possibly can. Our partnerships are critical to the expansion of Moshi Monsters. For example, Moshlings, a sub-brand of creatures, has become one of the biggest aeras of expansion, with opportunities in many sectors, even a Moshling fashion range.