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Pillow Pets

Author:枕头网   Time:2012-8-30 9:56:24

                                           Pillow Pets

 

 

Pillow Pets are an American brand of stuffed toys designed for children. Ordinary Pillow Pets are made of chenille and have Velcro straps that allow them to be changed from a decorated pillow into a stuffed animal. When invented by Jennifer Telfer in 2003, they were the first folding stuffed toys. They first gained success when Telfer personally sold the toys in the Christmas season of that year. Six years later, they would become more successful through television advertising. Because of their popularity, other companies have manufactured look-alike stuffed toys. The same popularity has allowed Pillow Pets to be used for charitable fund raising.

 

History

In 2003, Jennifer Telfer was living in San Diego, California with her husband, Clint, and two sons. Telfer stated in an interview with CNBC of her oldest son, then seven: "There was one particular animal that he liked to sleep with. And he slept with it so much that he started to flatten it out, and thats where I came with the concept that What if we can make stuffed animals functional?" She decided on a combination of a pillow and a stuffed animal as the concept for Pillow Pets. Telfer and her husband proposed a meeting with a plush manufacturer at a tradeshow in Las Vegas,and decided to wholesale the toys themselves through their company, CJ Products (CJ is a combination of their first initials).Following the meeting, the Telfers were prepared to sell the first toys.

The first Pillow Pet was "Snuggly Puppy."In the holiday season, Jennifer Telfer first sold Pillow Pets at mall kiosks, but not all of them were sold. Telfer said in the same CNBC interview: "Every single parent would walk up, and their kids would love them. [The parents would] say, No, its just another stuffed animal. Because they didnt know that it opened up to a pillow."A few weeks later Telfer started selling at home shows, and almost sold out. She then discovered that if she kept selling the toys past Christmas, they would continue to sell. She ordered a container of 7,000 Pillow Pets, now in six different animal varieties, and sold all of them in three months. By the end of 2003, CJ Products earned $300,000 in gross sales.

In 2009, CJ Products started using television advertising . Commercials aired on childrens cable channels such as Nickelodeon, and family-oriented networks such as Travel Channel. Thanks in part to the ads, CJ Products recalled gross sales of $7,000,000 at the end of 2009. Telfer said: "When we first came up with the idea of Pillow Pets, I knew I loved the idea, but I didnt realize that we were gonna be at this level, or people would love my idea as much as I loved it."

On February 11, 2011, CJ Products announced that Pillow Pets will be re-branded into Pillow Pets Premium, for specialty retail stores. This line features softer fabrics and "collecter-level" branding. These stores will continue to have exclusivity of the new designs for about 3 to 6 months before being offered to mass retailers.

 Product

A "Snuggly Puppy" dog pillow pet
 

When invented by Telfer, Pillow Pets were conceived as the first brand of folding stuffed toys. An ordinary Pillow Pet is made with chenille fabric. Underneath it is a velcro strap. Given that it starts in pillow position, its strap fastens to the other side in order to transform it into a stuffed toy. If the strap is unfastened again, the Pillow Pet can again be used as a pillow.

More than one hundred varieties of Pillow Pets have been sold by CJ Products. They have also been produced in baseball-themes for Major League Baseball, National Football League, and National Collegiate Athletic Association teams. The Walt Disney Company has licensed Disney-themed Pillow Pets. Stuffed toys based on Thomas the Tank Engine, Dora the Explorer, and SpongeBob SquarePants are being produced as well.CJ Products has also licensed Pillow Pets for three English Premier League football clubs (Arsenal, Chelsea, and Tottenham Hotspur) for release in September. Besides stuffed animals, other products bear the Pillow Pets name, such as blankets, slippers, hats, and print pajamas. A Pillow Pets book and two board games are also available. In late October 2011, a Pillow Pets video game was released for Nintendo DS.

Indirect

In December 2010, Michele McFarland, a human resources worker for the Baltimore County Department of Social Services, and her family, all from Catonsville, Maryland, started a Pillow Pet drive to help children at the Johns Hopkins Hospital. Their initial goal was to donate 200 toys, but they actually donated 250 Pillow Pets to the hospital in time for Christmas Eve. According to McFarland, residents of New York, New Jersey, Florida, and Georgia, in addition to residents of their state, contributed.[12] A year later, it was announced that McFarland aimed to donate even more Pillow Pets to five hospitals, including Johns Hopkins, by Christmas. She became affiliated with the Casey Cares Foundation and ordered 1,400 Pillow Pets to help the hospitals.

Jacob McConahay (then seven) and his family had been accepting donations of Pillow Pets children in the James Whitcomb Riley Hospital for Children, in Indianapolis, where Jacob was diagnosed with an aggressive form of cancer, Alveolar rhabdomyosarcoma. An early childhood volunteer, Jan Huntwork, mentioned that Jacobs goal was 1,000 Pillow Pets. CJ Products heard about Jacobs goal, and committed to matching the number of Pillow Pets that he collected. McConahays wish to help children in the Riley Hospital inspired students at China Grove Middle School, in Rowan County, North Carolina, to donate Pillow Pets to patients at the Jeff Gordon Childrens Hospital.[16] Jacob died on August 31, 2011. As of November 2011[update] his family has collected over 140,000 Pillow Pets in his name.

 Direct

Following the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami in Japan, CJ Products, The Today Show, and the American Red Cross, collaborated to support relief efforts. Pillow Pets announced that they would donate one dollar of every purchase of a Pillow Pet on their website, on March 17 and 18, 2011, to the American Red Cross. They also auctioned five Pillow Pets on the same days, and the money also went to the American Red Cross.

Since 2008, Pillow Pets has collaborated with the Family Reach Foundation to help families of children to fight cancer. In September 2011, the foundation received a donation of 6,200 Pillow Pets and was able to generate thousands of dollars in funds. Carla Tardif, the Foundations director of development and special programs, stated a consideration of initiatives to create more promotion of Family Reachs cause and raise charitable funds for families worldwide. "We applaud the tremendous amount of work being done by the Family Reach Foundation on behalf of [the] families," Jennifer Telfer said.

Counterfeits

Some toy companies have taken advantage of Pillow Pets popularity by manufacturing and selling counterfeits. CJ Products have been notified many times of impostor Pillow Pets.Telfer said: "It is priority one for us to protect our brand and deliver the high quality people have come to expect when they see the My Pillow Pets plush folding stuffed animals authentic tag."

In one case, in January 2011, Concord Toys International were accused of impersonating Pillow Pets. Their products were being sold in a warehouse in Queens, New York City and bore the label "Made in China." Private detectives hired by CJ Products tracked the toys to the warehouse, where U.S. marshals seized 17,000 counterfeits. An injunction was signed preventing Concord from manufacturing any forgeries, and CJ Products are seeking punitive damages against the company.

Awards and accolades

Pillow Pets have won several awards for being a child-friendly product. In 2009, Stevanne Auerbach recognized the toy as one of the Best Vacation Toys. Also in 2009, Armin Brott of Mr. Dad awarded the product the Mr. Dad Seal of Approval for Fathers Day Pillow Pets were among toys on Toys R Uss 2010 Hot Toy list.

 

 


编辑: SN-5
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