Lego backs Minifigures with web treasure hunt

LONDON - Lego is supporting its first swappable Minifigure range with a heavyweight online marketing campaign.

Lego Minifigures aim to encourage swapping
Lego Minifigures aim to encourage swapping

The brand will begin offering its miniature characters as individual, limited-edition collectables this week. It also plans to run digital activity with a ‘treasure hunt' theme.

The first range will comprise 16 Minifigures, which will be sold in opaque foil packets so that consumers cannot see which character they are buying.

By encouraging consumers to swap the figures, Lego hopes to emulate the success of other  products such as stickers and trading cards from brands includingPanini and Match Att­ax.

The launch of the range will incorporate the introduction of several additional characters. These include Demolition Dummy, Super Wrestler and Circus Clown. Lego will then unveil a further 16 figures in September in an attempt to make Minifigure swapping a long-term campaign.

According to Fiona Wright, UK marketing director at Lego, the decision to offer the characters was taken in response to ‘direct consumer need'. ‘The ranges allow consumers to have fun with the brand by collecting and swapping the figures,' she said. ‘The digital act-ivity is about building up a collectable frenzy, so that consumers are living the experience online as well as offline.'

The campaign will target  Lego's core audience of six- to 11-year-old boys and run across children's websites such as Nickelodeon, Cartoon Network and Toonattik.

Minifigures will be hidden within ad formats on the sites. When users find and click on them, they will be given a virtual character, which they can then place in a ‘trophy cabinet'.

The activity is similar in style to Orange's ‘Play Balloonacy' campaign, created by Poke, which encouraged consumers to enter an online balloon race, requiring them to visit various websites.

Those taking part in the Lego ‘treaure hunt' will be entered into a prize draw and awarded 20 Swapit points when they unveil each Minifigure. The points can be redeemed through the website swapit.co.uk on items such as books, cards, collectables and gadgets.

Lego will also be offering a free Minifigure to readers of The Beano  next month.

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