Marketing group features most desired items

By Ricardo R. Villarreal
Laredo Morning Times
Published: Wednesday, November 14, 2012 2:02 AM CST

Santa is already in town, collecting wish lists and posing for photos, which can only mean the holiday season is upon us.

A media party held at PMDG Marketing Communications, a local advertising agency, on Tuesday morning featured some of the more popular items from the Disney Store and Dillard’s.

Representatives from Sam’s Club, Chocolateka and Edible Arrangements also displayed samples of their products, all perfect for the holiday party season.

PMDG keeps track of shopping trends, from the most popular toys making their way onto wish lists to the hottest styles in fashion.

“A lot of the most popular toys always make a comeback.

One thing we’re seeing this year in terms of trends is the ‘Me Generation’ or ‘Generation Y’ who are actually gifting themselves,” said AB Barrera, PMDG CEO. Retailers are happy about this trend because it means more spending, with electronics, especially smart phones, being big among this 18 to 24 age group, Barrera said.

Hasbro’s fuzzy, robotic Furby has gotten smarter than when the toy was first introduced over a decade ago.

Wal-Mart, Kmart and Toys“R”Us listed Furby as the top toy of the current season for boys and girls.

LeapFrog and its LeapPad 2 are at the number two spot.

Designed for kids aged between 3 and 9, the learning tablet is expected to be difficult for stores to keep in stock.

The animated Master Moves Mickey from Fisher Price is also expected to sell well as are the Air Hogs “Hoover Assault” vehicle and the One Direction Dolls, inspired by the boy singing group.

Barbie continues to be popular as are Nerf guns and Mattel’s Monster High Dolls.

Fashion in the coming year will feature loose layering, with patterns against bold backgrounds.

Natural materials such as leather will be popular.

Tweed is back for men’s coats, while the sailor pea coat look will be seen on women, along with parkas.

As for accessories, bulky scarves, big bags with natural textures and silver jewelry are the trends.

Eye-catching footwear with color and texture, especially knee high boots in fur, fabric, leather and suede will be in style.

Barrera stressed the importance of good service at shopping venues, including well-stocked shelves and a well-informed staff, for satisfied customers.

He added Mall Del Norte will open their stores at 4 a.m. on Black Friday this year.

Laredo Chamber of Commerce special projects coordinator Miriam Menchaca Castillo said the chamber is participating in the Small Business Saturday campaign created by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce to promote small businesses.

“We are very proud to be one of only 100 chambers in the United States that got awarded about $7,000 by American Express to invest in the small business community,” Castillo said.

The money will be distributed to consumers by over 25 local participating businesses in the form of $25 gift cards.