Santa’s Marketing Magic

Coca Cola & Santa. That just happened!!

Coke & Santa. QED.

It doesn’t really snow in Cape Town. Sometimes, on the coldest winter days we get flurries on the mountains but the chances of your building snowmen in your backyard are pretty much the same as a snowball’s of making it through an infernal summer.

And yet, in malls across the country faux snow-frosted window displays are all the rage. Reindeer don’t naturally call South Africa home and yet there a golden ones suspended from the ceiling of the same malls. Let’s not get started on Christmas trees.

The fact is that like the white-bearded fat guy in the red suit, these things have come to be automatically associated with Christmas, even in a land where none of these things occur naturally. In fact, it’s entirely probably that wherever there’s a television, you’ll find the same imagery associated with the festive season.

And that’s what your brand should seek to do: make itself the obvious and natural association with its industry and its consumers. Think search-engines, think Google. Think sodas, think Coca-Cola. Think MP3 players, think iPod.

So all you need to do is figure out how to perform the greatest piece of marketing magic ever: turn your brand into a perpetualpart of the current zeitgeist. How do you do that? Well, some say there’s no sure-fire method. It’s part great timing, part great positioning and part pure dumb luck.

Or you could just take a closer look at Santa and his marketing machine… Add value. Disseminate the same message simply across all channels. Make your consumers your advocates. Allow your consumers to tell you what they want and respond accordingly. Target a niche market.

Yup, the magic formula is in there somewhere.


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