Posted by eireland 4 years, 5 months ago


Santa is one of the world's most recognizable symbols despite being referred to by several different names in various cultures. Like many favorite brands he can be intimately involved in our day-to-day lives. He sees you when you're sleeping and knows if you've been bad or good. That's a pretty impactful differentiator. 

These thoughts led me to the wildly entertaining and tongue-in-cheek "Santa Brand Book" recently created by UK-based agency Quietroom. It opens with "Santa is a Concept, not an idea. It's an Emotion, not a feeling. It's both Yesterday and Today. And it's Tomorrow as well." Then explores key elements of his identity including values, promise, logo usage, color palette, and competitors in the beard department such as Gandalf and Che Guevera. The guide also recommends language:

While the book is playful satire, it's also a useful tool to teach and understand the art of branding. 

Additionally, the nicknames "Old" and "Little" Saint Nick or "Santa Stole My Girlfriend" song may reflect poorly on his brand. No doubt his image is a little tired. I found a website created by New York-based design and production agency GLOW called Santa 2.0. The interactive experience is in response to Santa's "RFP" for a top to bottom rebrand. You can have fun choosing from a variety of unexpected qualities such as a "Bohemian Beatnik" tone or "Obsessed Pop Fans" for audience. How would you rebrand the beloved purveyor of toys? Make him an animal or a woman?

Starbucks. Apple. Nike. Santa. I want jolly Saint Nicholas to be part of the conversation about successful brands...or maybe I just want to ensure I make it on the "nice" list this year. 


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