Toy maker launches social media campaign to rekindle a great romance

Facebook users are being asked to vote on whether one of the most iconic US couples ever should be reunited after a seven-year split. Barbie and Ken, two half-century-old dolls marketed by the world’s biggest toy company, Mattel, split on Valentine’s Day 2004 after 43 years together, and now the public is being asked to weigh in on whether they belong together.

Weeks before Mattel, the iconic toy maker, is due to launch a brand new “Sweet Talking Ken” doll, the company has launched an ingenious campaign which seems to be gaining traction on the web.

Heavy on social marketing, the campaign utilizes Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare and YouTube to spread its message. On Facebook, Ken and Barbie’s page needs 10 000 likes in order to “get them back together”.

Ken is working hard to get Barbie back. ABC News reports that “Ken is on Twitter. He’s on Facebook. There are billboards up all throughout Southern California. He’s on his knees trying to get the blonde-haired, plastic bombshell to come back to him.”

Ken and Barbie had 43 years of history together before Blaine, the Australian surfer, came into the picture and stole Barbie’s heart.

After being dumped Ken “stepped out in a big way,” Mattel says on the Facebook page for the two dolls.

Ken went on to win critical acclaim for his role in Toy Story 3, and also made appearances at Fashion Week in New York, the page says.

But even as he revelled in his new-found celebrity, Ken’s aim was always to win back Barbie, Mattel says.

“Having explored the singles scene after his starring role in Toy Story 3, Ken now knows Barbie is the only doll for him,” Mattel said in a statement outlining some of the “epic romantic gestures” the boy doll is making to win back his girl.

One of those gestures is by professing his love for Barbie on billboards in New York and Los Angeles, one of which reads: “Barbie, We May Be Plastic But Our Love is Real.”

Mattel is now asking fans of the two dolls, who have retained their youthful good looks and seamlessly changed with the times, to vote on either doll’s Facebook page or on to determine if they should get back together.

In another excellent stroke of timing, Ken is reportedly aiming to win back Barbie just in time for Valentine’s Day, which is in a week’s time.



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