Santa is the world’s 2nd most recognizable character, right after Mickey Mouse. (Go Santa!)
Just for fun, what if we updated Santa’s personal brand for 2020, with a bit of irreverent zest?
Let’s find out…
Santa Claus has a fascinating personal brand.
But... could it be outdated?
What would happen if the Santa Claus marketing team hired an ad agency to update the Christmas brand?
Read on to find out which classic traditions are supposedly “improved” through modern marketing!
(Quick tip: Use these ideas as conversational nuggets for your holiday cocktail party!)
MEMO TO: The Santa Claus marketing team
Hello team, great to see you all at North Pole headquarters last week.
As promised, we've pulled together a list of ideas to improve Christmas marketing.
1. We need cooler jingles: Too many of our jingles (a.k.a. “Christmas carols”) are outdated.
Solution: Update content with fresher topics. For instance: “They grow up so fast. This Christmas at home, next Christmas out on their own.”
2. Modernize spokesperson image: Parental groups are complaining that Santa is a poor role model, because of his obesity and pipe smoking.
Solution: Consider partnering with CrossFit or the Whole30 company for a “before/after” campaign with Santa.
3. Improve Santa’s Google search results: Consumers are searching online for Santa under too many different search terms (St. Nicholas, Old Saint Nick, Father Christmas, Kris Kringle, etc.).
Solution: Focus all SEO on “Santa.” Cut jargon such as ‘Twas, ‘Tis, O’, and Yon.
4. Attract the Millennial demographic: We’re losing market share to competitors such as Hanukkah, and Kwanzaa. Christmas holds a leadership position with two billion consumers, but trending downward. To expand the Christmas brand, start by increasing appeal to unreached segments.
Solution: Introduce eggnog laced with hand-crafted, small-batch spirits to attract more Millennials.
5. Avoid protests: Animal-rights bloggers could protest reindeer mistreatment, since our reindeer activity continues longer than 8 hours on Christmas Eve.
Solution: Check with the legal dept. and argue that overtime doesn’t count across multiple time zones.
6. Introduce a Santa sidekick: Other iconic characters have some sort of sidekick. For instance, Jolly Green Giant had Sprout. Scooby Doo had Scrappy Doo. Dr. Evil had Mini-Me.
Solution: What kind of lil’ sidekick can we cast with Santa? (Note: The media department says we could broaden demographic appeal by casting taller elves.)
7. Elf labor: Hourly employee overhead is rising.
Solution: No more written lists from kids or in-person appearances from Santa. The Christmas list database is going digital.
8. Merge with another holiday: December calendar is too cluttered. We need to stand out!
Solution: Co-brand a holiday with Winter Solstice, so it’s a twofer holiday. (Do we have the budget to acquire New Year’s Eve?)
9. Christmas vs. Birthday: Santa is losing retail sales to birthday gifts throughout the year. This needs to stop.
Solution: Stir up some buzz by taking on the competition directly with a iPhone vs. Android approach… Christmas vs. Birthday.
Thank you, Santa marketing team, for inviting us to share our ideas. Looking forward to your feedback next month at the annual retreat in Cancun.
Acme Marketing Company
(Now of course, this is all in good fun. You know how Sally says, “You don’t need to CHANGE who you are, you need to become MORE of who you are.” Santa doesn’t need to change. But it’s fun to play with his personal brand!)
What’s your favorite suggestion here? Tell us below in the comments!
Team up Santa, Mrs Claus, Elves and Reindeer with the Jetson's family which reinforces and enhances family brand. This also will bring Santa into the galaxy thereby increasing market share and universal appeal and dominance. Hands down Elroy for Santa's side kick. Happy Holiday Season Sally Hogshead & Team Fascinate!!!
Proposed Robot for the Santa sidekick. Something that could fit down chimneys and clean up cookie crumbs. Integrate AI to write thank you notes. This should take care of the, "I saw Mommy kissing Santa" issue also.
Am glad so many comments said don't mess with Christmas! Of course, from a spiritual standpoint it is what it is, but from the secular side, the winter festival was started to perk up from the gloominess of the long winter, (thereby tying in with the winter solstice) and to promote goodwill, frivolity, feasting and decorating - which just happens to tie in with joy, peace on earth, good will and gift giving to the Christ child. .So, there are many ways to think of Christmas but updating the meaning and tradition seems pointless. Merry Christmas, joyeux noel, feliz navidad and Happy New Year!
Your right on, thanks for your comments
Our jingles are fine and our Oh Holy Nights are amazing and we need to teach this kind of love and not change it! Some things are not made to change! The further you go away from GOD the most lost you get.
So right! CHRISTMAS is about CHRIST not Santa. There are some things that should not changed for society today. They need to have the morals we grew up with not what society is teaching them today! Too much is changing now! Get back to CHRIST!
I enjoyed the message. I'm not too hung up on Christmas and people messing with it.
The main take-away was that we need to keep our thinking fresh, adapt to the market place in any way that we deem fit.
If, in deed, a holiday trend is diminishing in the world, then 'maybe' we want or need to adjust our marketing to reach the new demographic. If we are married to that demographic, then keep doing what we are doing.
I kind of liked the idea about the birthdays and getting a side kick. I've been thinking of going to Fiverr.com and getting a cartoonist to create an animated side-kick for me and my products.
I'm one of those up-tight, anal retentive types and I'm trying to find ways to let my hair down - while I still have some to let down.
Happy New Year!
It's time Santa released a sex tape, had an affair, weight loss secret or some other trashy drama for the masses or maybe Santa sticks with the generous gift giving and magical theme and waites fur the masses to wake up.
I gotta go withRob on this one. I know the post is tongue-in-cheek, but it was truly a waste of time and space. Being subscribed to so many different mailing lists, it's time to do my year end purge. For the past several months, I was on the fence about whether to unsubscribe from this one. But this post has made my decision a no-brainer.
Still love Sally's books, but the posts have "jumped the shark" for me...