Boost Brand Connection and Excitement with Collectibles Promotions, Survey Says

April 11, 2024

There’s a trend in the marketplace of brands targeting their young adult customers with innovative, collectible promotions, such as collectible figures, cups, stickers and plush.

We wanted to find out what consumers really think of these collectible promotions, so we conducted a survey of 400 Gen Z and Millennial men and women in the US. Here’s what they had to say:

When brands offer collectibles,
what do you think?


love it or like it

Contemporary Collectibles Chart – 81% Like or Love collectibles

An overwhelming majority (81%) of respondents said they “love” or “like” it when brands offer collectible items as promotions. Why? Because collectibles make the brand experience more exciting and joyful. As one respondent put it:

“Collectibles create a sense of excitement and nostalgia. They add an element of fun to everyday experiences and give me something to look forward to [from] the brand.”

But it’s not just about fun and games. Collectibles also forge a deeper connection between customers and the brands they love by offering tangible mementos. In the words of another respondent, “It’s a part of the brand that you can keep with you forever!” By offering collectibles, brands can show off their creativity and personality in new and innovative ways.

The survey also found that the most motivating types of collectible promotions are:

  1. Free gifts with purchase
  2. Items that are “just too cute” to pass up
  3. When the proceeds go to support charity
  4. Collectibles based on popular licenses, characters or celebrities
  5. Limited time offers that create a sense of urgency
  6. Yearly/seasonal promotions that become a tradition to look forward to

The impact on brand perception is clear. 71% agreed that collectibles make them happy and 62% said they make them like the brand more. Collectibles also have the power to drive traffic: 76% agree that a collectible promotion “gets my attention” and a whopping 63% felt collectibles would entice them to visit or purchase from the brand.

When brands offer collectibles…

Contemporary Collectibles Data Visualization

So if you’re looking to create a stronger bond with your customers, especially Millennials and Gen Z, consider incorporating contemporary collectibles into your marketing strategy. Not only will you add some excitement and joy to your brand, but you’ll also make your most loyal fans feel truly connected to you. C3 can help!


C3 is a Kansas City-based marketing and design agency that brings brands to life for families with children through experiences and entertainment. C3 uses insights, strategy and expertise to produce award-winning programs and custom products to help major restaurant, hospitality and service industry partners connect with families wherever they are—in person, at home or in the community at large.

C3 Lab Trendspotting - Collectibles for All Ages
Brands are targeting adults with collectibles and giveaways. Recently, we’ve seen restaurants offering toys and other tangible brand-building collectibles as incentives to drive traffic Read more
C3 In The News
Check out these industry articles and reports to see what we've been up to lately. We’re experts on families with children, so we’re always Read more
Screen-Free Entertainment: Encourage Family Time and Drive Family Traffic
Restaurant meals are time-honored opportunities for families to bond, enjoy family time and forge new family traditions. Whether in-restaurant, at home, or on-the-go, and Read more
C3 Lab – Activate your customers with collectibles for all ages
Brands are always looking for new ways to drive traffic, incentivize loyalty and increase brand love with their target consumers. One innovative tactic for Read more
A mother and child purchasing food from a convenience store
Families are a valuable market for convenience stores, especially for retailers looking to grow their foodservice business. We at C3 know that one of Read more
How to Be Kid-Friendly in Fast Casual Restaurants Feature
The third edition of our How To Be Kid-Friendly infographic series. Download as a PDF and check out the QSR edition here or CDR edition here. Read more
C3 Lab Families Are Important To Restaurants
At C3, we lead with data and insights. One of our favorite data sources is Circana (formerly NPD Group), which provides us with regular Read more
C3 Lab What Families Want from Fast Casual
It comes as no surprise that fast casual restaurants are a growing segment of the restaurant industry. According to NPD Group/CREST®, while overall restaurant Read more
C3 Lab Building Brand Loyalty
Every day, we at C3 design, safety-test, produce and deliver engaging entertainment solutions for our clients’ family customers. Once in a while, we step Read more
C3 WEBINAR LAB Header 1366x768
In February of 2022, C3 was proud to host a webinar in partnership with Nation’s Restaurant News’ CREATE the future of foodservice series entitled Read more
C3 offpremises header
Grow sales and delight families with brand-tailored off-premises solutions Take-away is here to stay. As we know all too well, recent years have turned Read more
C3 LAB Pizza FeatureFIXED 112
You know how great pizza is for families, but what about how valuable families are for pizza? Our latest research has confirmed what many Read more
C3Lab More Than A Cup
From the C3 dictionary: Kids’ Cup, Noun A perfectly kid-sized drinking vessel used by casual dining, fast casual and QSR brands to make families Read more
C3LAB Post Covid SingleVersion Final
Spring has sprung, COVID-19 vaccinations are rolling out across the U.S., and C3 has the latest insights from families on indoor dining. During the Read more
Crayon Deep Dive
Crayons are a perfect symbol of the joys of childhood: creating, playing, learning. They’re classic; they’re inexpensive ... They are timeless. As basic as Read more
C3Lab Off Premise2
There’s no question that off-premises dining has become an essential part of people's lives. During the pandemic, it was a necessity. After the pandemic, Read more
C3 Lab Off Premises Feature 106
One of the many things that’s been upended in 2020 is how families experience casual dining and fast casual restaurants. With the shift towards Read more
C3Lab 13 Facts About Kids and Restaurants Feature 105
Download as a PDF. The Art + Science of Kid + Family Marketing Get the latest kids and families insights delivered directly to your Read more
How to Be Kid Friendly in CDR Feature 104
UPDATED APRIL 2022 Part 2 of our 2-part infographic series. Download as a PDF or check out part 1, the Fast Food Edition here. Read more
How to Be Kid Friendly in QSR Feature 103
UPDATED APRIL 2022 Part 1 of our 2-part infographic series. Download as a PDF or check out part 2, the Casual Dining edition here. Read more
C3LAB ReturntoRestaurants Feature 102
Why isn’t it over yet? When can things go back to how they used to be? Like a kid kicking their feet in the Read more
C3Lab FamilyValue Feature 101
We know kids. What they like, how they spend their time… and their favorite places to eat. We know that when families go out, Read more
C3Signature Launch
C3 Brand Marketing launches kids’ meal entertainment program, prioritizing family-owned restaurants. Independent restaurant owners can now elevate the family customer experience with tailored, kids’ Read more