11/06/2013 03:07 pm ET

Mattel Is Looking Towards Latinos For The Holidays


Born in Vienna in 1909, Peter Drucker had a childhood marked in large part by seriousness and sorrow.

As a boy, he was included in the weekly salons that his father and mother held with writers, musicians, economists, mathematicians and physicians. Playtime this was not. Meanwhile, World War I took a terribly heavy toll. Drucker and his friends “taught ourselves to read by scanning the casualty lists and the obituaries with the big black borders, looking for names we knew, names of people we loved and missed,” he later recalled.

Still, the mirth missing in Drucker’s early years wouldn’t have prevented him from admiring the savvy exhibited by the toy maker Mattel as it tries to boost sales this holiday season for its array of brands, including Barbie, Hot Wheels and Fisher-Price. In a bid to influence Latino families (and, in particular, the Latina moms who tend to make their household’s purchasing decisions), the company has launched an advertising campaign called “Toy Feliz,” or “Toy Happy” in English. It is a clever twist on “Estoy feliz”—Spanish for “I’m happy.”

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