The character has become an internet star, but it’s looking unlikely that Zingy, the mascot from the EDF Energy ads, will be giving toy retailers a boost any time soon.
Zingy’s dancing performances in the ‘Feel Better’ campaign have attracted millions of hits on YouTube and the flame-shaped bot has been the subject of numerous Facebook fan pages, Twitter tributes and online petitions calling for the character to be spun into a range of retail products.
And although it has been built from similar technology to that found in Wow Stuff's My Keepon, EDF says it has no plans for a Zingy toy yet.
“We’re really pleased with the response to Zingy,” said Nick Foley, senior marketing manager. “We know there’s a lot of interest in a toy out there, but at this stage there aren’t any plans to do anything like that.”
But he added: “We are looking at various ways of using the character, so that could change.” Foley said that if the company did make a toy, it would be for its own customers first, adding that EDF was currently focused on using Zingy to further engage with the public in more commercials and competitions.
Handmade Zingy merchandise is already selling on eBay.
Speaking of the toy again, Foley said: “It’s early days, it was only launched in April so it’s too early for that kind of discussion.”
One thing is clear though: Zingy is excelling in its current role, with EDF reporting a “very positive response” to its new tariff thanks to the toy character.
“The idea behind the character was to do something different and really connect with people,” Foley said.
“Energy can be quite a dry topic sometimes, and can carry quite negative connotations. I think with this character we’ve been able to communicate with people in a much better way than perhaps we have done in the past.”