“Hi Barbie!” You’re a stroke of marketing brilliance.

by Bert Gybels · 24/07/2023

It’s not often we see ballsy moves like Mattel has made with the new Barbie movie. The traditional Barbie - despite decades of efforts - still struggles with being realistic and quite frankly, feministic. The “Barbie can be anything!” attitude has been struggling to keep momentum. Until this movie changed the narrative.

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A formal adieu to toxic positivity

We’ve been seeing the change on social media for a couple of months now. The picture perfect influencers seem to get less traction, while the authentic, “unperfect but real” boys and girls are doing great. In part, we have to thank TikTok for that. Seems like Barbie has really understood this shift and uses it quite literally in the movie.

A dose of self-mocking and then some

What can replace the “toxic positivity” of these insta-perfect influencers? Self deprecating humor which Mattel does so well - both on the big screen and on social media. It’s so refreshing to see one of the big corporations make fun of themselves in such a unique way. And this self-mocking seems to work with the movie being a true blockbuster.

What can we learn from this for social media?

Now, more than ever, it pays off to be real. It pays off to not take your brand too seriously. To address the elephant in the room, your brand’s imperfections. Will you take the leap as marketing manager? Anyway: Well played, Mattel.