Encantos Launches New DTC Family Brand, Tiny Travelers
Encantos Media Studios, creator of bilingual preschool brand and Nick Jr. animated series Canticos, today unveils a new direct-to-consumer brand called Tiny Travelers, designed to educate kids and families on the many countries of the world and inspire them to explore diverse cultures through books, apps, products and experiences.
The new Tiny Travelers content and products are designed for preschool and elementary-school kids and enable them to explore geography, language and culture through interactive physical and digital play experiences. A character-driven animated series is also in the works.
Purpose is at the core of the Tiny Travelers launch, said Steven Wolfe Pereira, Encantos CEO and Tiny Travelers creator and author. The goal is to expose kids to the vastness and diversity of the world beyond their backyards, engendering empathy for different cultures, geographies and languages at a time when people all over the world are more connected than ever via digital platforms. Becoming global citizens, he added, is a competitive advantage for kids as they seek to become tomorrow’s global leaders.
The launch comes at a time when travel, according to the AAA, is at an all-time high, with nearly 100 million Americans planning to take a family vacation in 2019. Of that total, 44% are Millennials—58% of whom have children under age 18—39% are GenXers, and 32% are Baby Boomers. As more than half of the U.S. population is under age 40, that group of Millennials is driving the family-travel industry.
Tiny Travelers is the creation of Wolfe Pereira, the former CMO of Quantcast, and Encantos Chief Creative Officer Susie Jaramillo, who in 2015 established Encantos and launched Canticos and later Skeletitos, a brand and character series focused on bravery. Encantos is a B-Corp, and the entertainment-education company’s mission is to educate and inspire kids, prioritizing diversity, equality and inclusion.
Wolfe Pereira said that the launch of Tiny Travelers is for him a dream realized. “This for me is really the culmination for all of my experiences and finally building the brand I always wanted to build, and it dates back to my childhood,” he said. “I grew up in the Dominican Republic, and I never saw anything about the DR. There was this lack of understanding around languages and cultures. And it was the kind of thing [motivated by] understanding cultural pride but also this idea of being a citizen of the world. At Tufts I was an international relations major. I really just always had this view of the fact that it’s such a big world out there. It’s a really big, beautiful, diverse world. I have had the ability to live all over the world. I’ve been to 75 countries. So I have this global perspective and now think of all those global experiences, and it really hits home when you have kids: ‘Wow—how do I share this with my kids?’”
He added, “At a time when people want to build walls, we need to build bridges. All this really stems from our not understanding geography, language and culture. So we created a brand to be that. And that’s Tiny Travelers,” he said.
“One part Lonely Planet, one part TripAdvisor, one part Carmen Sandiego, there is nothing out there that captures in the DTC context that family travel experience.”
He said the company is in “deep discussions” with companies about brand partnerships, and that logical partners include hotel companies, financial services companies, retailers and airlines. Category exclusives are “on the table;” partners really need to “believe in our mission-driven philosophy,” he said.
Tiny Travelers launches with the Treasure Quest series of search-and-find, illustrated board books, available at TinyTravelers.com, Amazon and other retail bookstores. Developed with a Tiny Travelers Country Guide, a destination expert from the featured country or with family ties to it, each Treasure Quest title has been carefully researched to ensure that cultural authenticity is maintained and accurately depicted. The first book available is Tiny Travelers Treasure Quest Mexico; next month Tiny Travelers Treasure Quest China will debut, followed by Puerto Rico in February and India in March.
Tiny Travelers is also launching its direct-to-consumer e-commerce website with a collection of travel-inspired merchandise that celebrates the world and its cultures.
Certainly, the product isn’t just for families investing in actual travel; it also benefits those who cannot or choose not to travel but still seek education about global cultures. “Just because you don’t get to physically visit a country doesn’t mean you can’t learn about a country,” Wolfe Pereira said. “We want to bring [the experience] to families regardless of socioeconomic background, race, ethnicity. Even if you can’t visit the country, we can bring the country to you.”