FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Adrienne Appell
Toy Industry Association
5th Annual Engage! Conference and Expo Opens Today during Toy Fair
Conference Tracks to Explore Digital Strategies,
Tools and Challenges
New York, NY | February 15, 2011 –
The 5th annual
Engage! Conference and Expo, co-locating with the 108th American
International Toy Fair at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center
in New York City, opened its doors this morning for a two-day run.
Engage! 2011 will provide entertainment companies, youth brands,
advertising agencies and other industry professionals with the critical
information they need to reach kids and youth through digital
technologies. The robust conference will feature more than 100 speakers;
session tracks will focus on tools and strategies for reaching the
constantly connected consumer, address the proliferation of new devices
and services allowing consumers to be “always on,” and
discuss the new set of challenges this presents for companies.
“The toy industry is increasingly influenced by the
technological advancements being made in other industries,” said
Marian Bossard, VP of Meetings and Events at the Toy Industry
Association (TIA). “Having Engage under the same roof as Toy Fair
for the second year in a row is a wonderful opportunity for our shared
The partnership between the two shows provides all Toy Fair attendees
with full access to the Engage! exhibit floor.
Engage! 2011 session tracks include: App Strategy and Development;
Social Games, Casual MMO’s and Virtual Worlds; Digital Kids
– Business Strategies; Digital Kids – Creative, Design and
Development; Digital Monetization Strategies; and Gamification.
Keynote speaker Brian Reynolds, Chief Game Designer at Zynga,
welcomed participants this morning at 9:30 a.m. Reynolds is a 19-year
industry veteran, recognized for being one of the industry’s most
talented and productive game designers and honored by PC Gamer magazine
as one of 25 “Game Gods.” Zynga is the world’s largest
social game developer with more than 360 million active users and 65
million active daily users, who enjoy Zynga games like Farmville,
Frotinerville, Mafia Wars, Petville, Zynga Poker and Treasure Isle.
Rick Wion, Director of Social Media for McDonald’s USA, will
deliver the keynote address on Wednesday, February 16th; Wion’s
professional efforts at McDonald’s include social marketing
campaigns, long-term branding, issues management, customer service, and
employee engagement. Using new trends in technologies to enhance
McDonald’s balanced menu options is a key component of the
brand’s current endeavors.
Toy industry professionals speaking at the event include:
• Eric Hardman, Director, Hasbro Online Media,
Adult/Family/Preschool Content, Hasbro
• Jeanette Juetten, Girl Online Content Marketing Manager,
American Girl / Mattel
• Bill Ritchie, Co-Founder and CEO, Thinkfun
• Reyne Rice, Trend Specialist, Toy Industry
Toy Fair is the largest toy trade show in the Western
Hemisphere, bringing together more than 1,100 exhibiting manufacturers,
distributors, importers and sales agents from 100 countries to showcase
an estimated 100,000 toy and entertainment products to the 9,000 unique
retail outlets scheduled to attend. The show is taking place now through
Wednesday, February 16th at 4:00 p.m.
About the Toy Industry Association (TIA)
TIA is the
not-for-profit trade association for producers and importers of toys and
youth entertainment products sold in North America, representing more
than 500 companies who account for approximately 85% of domestic toy
sales. Toy safety is the number one priority for the toy industry.
TIA has a long history of leadership in toy safety including development
of the first comprehensive toy safety standard more than 30 years ago,
and working with government, consumers and industry on ongoing programs
to ensure safe and fun play. For more information, please visit www.toyfairny.com, www.toyassociation.org or www.toyinfo.org.