If you're a toy or model maker, no matter how big or small - or if you make spare parts, model components, accessories like display cabinets or anything similar, then Toy Collector can be a very useful tool for you.
Many of the biggest names in the business are already taking advantage of the site's features, including Corgi, Jada, Merrythought, Minichamps, Schuco, Herpa, HerpaWings. Smaller niche manufacturers like Budig and Imit'Toys are using the site as well!
Here's a rundown of all the things you can use the site for, and how they can benefit you.
You can blog about new product launches, including descriptions and photographs of your new products. This lets the collecting community (ie your customerbase) see and be aware of what you're releasing and add it to their "want" lists so they can buy it!
Traditionally, product launches were covered in print magazines, but not all collectors buy these - and, unlike magazines, it's free for them to read Toy Collector! Plus, these days, anyone who wants information on products like yours is far more likely to type your name into Google than go to a newsagent - so if your products are on our site, they're far more likely to get noticed than if they're in a magazine. And the site stays around forever, while magazines get recycled!
If you have video footage of your products, you can now even embed that in your blog posts so people can see your products in action!
Check out the Corgi Premiums blog here for an example!
Our galleries are the perfect place to display your products. You can upload as many galleries as you like and divide them up by range so visitors can see everything you make and know what they need to buy for their collections!
Profiles and Communication Tools
Putting up information about you or your company in its profile allows site visitors to learn about you and your products firsthand and increase your brand awareness. You can also use the Private Messaging system and discussion forums to communicate directly with the collecting community and garner valuable direct feedback about what they think of your products and what items they want to see launched on the market so they can buy them! You can link to your own external website from your profile too.
Check out Corgi Premiums' profile here as an example!
ToyPedia is our wiki-based online encyclopedia of collectable toys, models and everything associated with them. By making sure the listings for your company, product ranges and individual products are as complete as possible, you can provide collectors with an exhaustive checklist of everything you make so they have a detailed checklist of everything they need to buy, even down to the minutest variation! Plus having your company and individual range and item histories up helps increase brand awareness and consumer interest in you and your items.
Check out the ToyPedia entry for Budig here as an example!
Promotions & Prize Draws
Toy Collector's first promotion was for Audi, as part of their centenary, and consisted of a blog and charity forum auction. Our second promotional blog showcased the work of modelmaker Egido Reali of LookSmart and MR, and his Lamborghini models and can be seen here. Similar promotions can be customised to showcase almost any business, museum, manufacturer or club and can make use of any of the site's features, from blogs to forums to galleries.
If you would like to promote a new product, book or similar by giving away a few free as promotional items, you can take advantage of our new Prize Draw forum. Companies we've worked with here include Wiking, Argos, Helmet Aircraft, White Tower Miniatures and The Crowood Press.
Our Yellow Pages Section is a directory of toy and model-related businesses. So if you sell direct to the consumer, or if you have a consumer service like, for example, Corgi Premiums, an entry in the right category here will help customers find you, whatever you make.
Check out the Jada Yellow Pages listing here as an example!
Brand Awareness & Search Engine Optimisation
Of course, all the above will help you build that all-important brand awareness, making collector-consumers as aware as possible of who your company is, what items you make and what you have for them to buy and collect. The more times your name and links appear on the internet, the better your company's search engine optimisation will be too, meaning better search results for your name and more interest from everyone searching!