2012 was a year of new faces, as The Elf on the Shelf® added a girl Scout Elf and a Spanish translation to its mix of products. The company also launched its first apps for smartphones, debuted An Elf’s Story®merchandise, and grew its licensing division by 700 percent when they added 14 partners. However, continued appearances on the best-seller lists of the Wall Street Journal, Publishers Weekly, and USA Today paled in comparison to The Elf on the Shelf® appearing as a balloon in the 86th Annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade®. As long as eight bicycles laid end to end and as tall as five stories, the Scout Elf was embraced by the media, as well as the fans lining the parade route—eventually becoming a fan favorite. At its debut, The Elf on the Shelf® balloon was the largest balloon ever featured in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and was only the second self-published book character to ever be highlighted as a balloon.