LOS ANGELES: In honor of the 15th anniversary of the Power Rangers, Bandai America and The Rogers Group have launched a nationwide campaign to celebrate the brand's heritage and energize it for generations to come.
What began as the spin-off of a Japanese franchise, the original Mighty Morphin Power Rangers TV series – and its accompanying toy line – were introduced to US audiences in 1993, instantly becoming an elementary-school sensation.
Today, the regularly evolving toys are still among top-selling action brands, said Danielle Armbrust, senior marketing manager at toy manufacturer Bandai America. With the Power Rangers’ core messages of good versus. evil, teamwork, loyalty, courage, and even environmental consciousness, Bandai positions them as ideal “first action-figure for 3-6 year old boys,” she said.
To further engage those boys – as well as their sisters and parents – Bandai last month kicked off a 15-city celebration tour featuring kid-friendly games, giveaways, Power Rangers photo sessions, and the chance to experience Bandai’s new Mega Mission Helmet role-play toy. But the company also has “adult fans who are still collecting Power Rangers, having grown up with the TV show,” in mind, Armbrust said. To address their interests, the tour – running through Nov. 4 at various locations – also includes a “Wall of Legends” showcase and the unveiling of a limited-edition line of Power Ranger collectables.
To draw awareness for the tour, the Rogers Group is promoting it via aggressive media relations to both English- and Spanish-language outlets, said Brenda Lynch, SVP, consumer marketing group and Bandai account head.
That includes third party-endorsed outreach to toy and business trades, regional convention and visitors bureaus, calendar sections, and lifestyle print, online, and radio outlets, she said.
The PR team is also reaching out to Power Rangers’ fan Web sites, Lynch added, particularly in support of a complementary viral effort to get the toy line inducted in Rochester, NY’s National Toy Hall of Fame and Museum. That outreach was positioned as a “secret mission,” where interactive e-mails targeted adult fans and collectors, guiding them through a tour of the brand’s 15-year legacy, and encouraging them to cast their vote for museum recognition.
This marks the first time Bandai has attempted a fan-driven viral campaign on behalf of the Power Rangers.