- My Little Pony rides into the metaverse with a new Roblox activation that is meant to mark the release of new episodes in its Netflix series, “My Little Pony: Make Your Mark,” per a press release from the Hasbro brand.
- The Visit Maretime Bay game lets users explore one of the show's locations. Upon entering the space, the user’s avatar is turned into a customizable pony avatar.
- The usual Roblox chat function has been disabled for children’s security. In addition, monetization through Roblox’s premium currency Robux, has been replaced with an in-world crystal-based economy. A related “Visit Maretime Bay” campaign, created with Media.Monks, includes a Tripadvisor partnership.
My Little Pony, a toy line and entertainment property from Hasbro, is turning to Roblox in a new effort to reach young consumers where they are. The Visit Maretime Bay game is intended to immerse players in the brand’s extended universe while reinforcing themes of “friendship, fun and adventure.” At the same time, the brand is extending its reach to parents and families by partnering with Tripadvisor — the first time the travel site has partnered with a kids entertainment brand, per the press release. On the travel platform, Maretime Bay is listed as a family vacation destination whose attractions can be experienced by watching the series on Netflix.
While users explore Maretime Bay, they can play minigames, take selfies with the Mane 5 ponies and earn badges. Additionally, they can unlock limited-edition accessories.
My Little Pony launched in 1983, meaning several generations of consumers have grown up with the brand. Crafting a digital strategy for such mixed audience brands can be a challenge for marketers as they must juggle the privacy and security concerns for children with the need to be entertaining.
The Roblox space has put in place safety measures to give parents peace of mind. My Little Pony has long had a following of adults, particularly men known as “Bronies.” While the vast majority of these fans are not predatory, disabling the chat function keeps children from talking to strangers. Additionally, by removing Robux from the space, children cannot charge up their parent’s credit card.
"We're pushing what's possible on Roblox through a novel experience that allows kids and their parents to transform their typical avatar into a Pony, allowing them to become part of the story as they interact with our characters,” said Jessica Murphy, senior vice president of entertainment brand marketing at Hasbro’s Entertainment One arm, in a statement. “And, we're focused on ensuring that our fans enjoy Maretime Bay in a free, safe environment."
In addition to the release of new “Make Your Mark” episodes, the Roblox activation lines up with a partnership with Girl Scouts of the U.S.A, which now enters its second year. A new patch will be available for scouts to earn when they complete Girl Scouts and My Little Pony challenges. The Hasbro brand is also sponsoring the Rebel Girls' upcoming Rebel Girls Fest: Be the Change, which will take place in October at U.S. and Canadian bookstores.
My Little Pony has been undergoing a multiplatform brand transformation in recent months. The brand has long attempted to move beyond just being a toy brand and expanded into shows, games and other properties. Recently, the brand dropped the first-ever official My Little Pony podcast and new music.