Super Mario Teaches a New Generation

Imagine the scenario – your child is devoted to his Nintendo DS XL.  He is allowed 1 hour per day to play it, and Legos Star Wars and Mario Kart are in constant rotation.  One afternoon he is allowed to recharge it himself, and in a moment of frustration, forces the connection and bends all of the pins.  There is no way to straighten them, there is no way to fix the unit.  What does a loving parent who believes in teaching the consequences of ones actions do?

First we explained to our 7-year old that he had to be more careful and would be responsible for helping to pay for repairs.  Then we went out to the internet to find solutions.  Ultimately, the blog and tech consensus was to send the device back to Nintendo.  Which we did.  Two weeks later it came back, fixed, no charge!  Nintendo actually enclosed a letter tailor-made for parents of young children that explained that this was the ONLY time the company would perform such a service.  Next time . . . .  I love Nintendo.

Nintendo’s snail mail customer service, however, is not duplicated by its online services.  This seems odd for a company devoted to plugged-in customers.  First of all, Nintendo needs to have a parents’ site available.  Clearly they understand that at least part of their audience is under 10 (or acts like someone under 10 years old).  Why not create a dedicated parent’s site?  How about a parents’ Twitter feed that would allow us to be up to date on releases and issues that arise?  Why do we have to be nagged by our children – companies should reach out to us and give us the good information we can use to decide on the best birthday and holiday gifts.  Currently I go to Amazon.com to read reviews.  However, given Nintendo’s market share, I would like to know how they could empower us, parents, to partner with them to offer better information to the pocketbooks that pay for the games.

Nintendo – please create a parent site.  Give us information and help us create the conscientious consumers that your form letter indicates is important to you as a company.Help us Nintendo

Nintendo – Please allow us to have easy access to releases and new versions in a forum for parents.  MyNintendoNews on Twitter is not tailored enough.

Nintendo FacebookNintendo – Facebook would be a great place for a parents’ page.  Let us interact, comment, and help you create a friendly marketing environment for our children.  We know they love it – we just want to know more about it.

Parents want to be involved in their children’s lives, and the old model of advertising sugar cereals and junk food on Saturday morning during Scooby Doo and the Laugh Olympics doesn’t work in the age of computers and social media.  DeadMau5 ensures that Super Mario will remain in my child’s lexicon for at least another 10 years.  Nintendo – help us help our children understand the responsiblity that comes with expensive game units and negotiating techno!

Sources:

Laugh Olympics Intro.  You Tube.  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EC4l-P20V-Q

Nintendo.  Homepage. http://www.nintendo.com/?country=US&lang=en

Nintendo.  New Super Mario Bros Walkthrough, Part 1.  You Tube, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=srpkwSB8SnY&feature=player_detailpage

Schulman, J. (2011, March 29).  A day with deadmau5:  LEDs, Super Mario, and techno.  Engadget, http://www.engadget.com/2011/03/29/a-day-with-deadmau5-leds-super-mario-and-techno/

Scooby Doo Introduction.  You Tube.  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0_C2HJvtRDY

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3 thoughts on “Super Mario Teaches a New Generation

  1. Great post and so important to connect the parents., Gaming is a fantastic marketing tool, but children are lured into another universe much too easily and monitoring and essential.

    Best,
    Donna

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