Here at MINDSCAPE, brand analysis is something we do all the time. So in the holiday spirit, we thought we’d play around with our usual brand analysis tactics to take a look at the jolly old man in red, Santa.
Does Santa’s brand still hold up today or do we need to put some new jingle in those sleigh bells?
Santa’s Red Hat and Suit
Iconic. Bold. Needs no notes but I’ll leave some anyway.
Red is generally associated with life, health, vigor, war, courage, anger, love, and fervor. I’ve always thought red was an odd choice honestly because you’d think you’d want something a little calmer or represents happiness but Santa’s made it work and flipped the script on what it means to be red for his own brand identity. This is a choice only someone as powerful as Santa could get away with, I wouldn’t recommend trying anything as off the wall as redefining a whole color for your brand.
When it comes to Santa’s outfit, we should be jingling slay bells not sleigh bells. Frankly, Santa has now ruined many outfits for the rest of us by giving them “Christmas vibes” if it’s too red and white or red and green.
If your brand has the entire market locked for combining two colors that come in an 8 pack of crayons, that’s a sign your brand packs a punch.
Santa’s reindeer are one of the more difficult parts of Santa’s brand for me to analyze. He’s done a great job of associating them with his brand. They pretty much go hand and hand and are a key part of his lore of him delivering everything in one night. But he could probably be doing more with the reindeer. For all of the Santa gear out there, you don’t see a ton of reindeer stuff.
Another thing Santa could work on to promote the reindeer as a deeper part of his brand is to get the personalities of the other reindeer besides Rudolph more out there on the marketplace. Honestly, I don’t even know if could name them all myself. Off the top of my head we got Dasher, Prancer, Blizten, Dancer(?), Comet, uhhh. That’s what I got.
I’d like to apologize to Vixen, Donner, and Cupid (isn’t that Valentine’s Day) for forgetting their names. Maybe you should take it up with the big man in red to boost up your image. Right now you’re basically like a boyband and Rudolph is your Justin Timberlake. Not many people remember much about the other members of NSYNC besides Justin Timberlake (and maybe Joey Fatone).
Giant Magical Sack
Now here I might have some feedback for Santa about how ‘Giant Magical Sack’ may leave some of the older kids snickering. But since Santa believers are supposed to be a bit innocent, we’ll give him a pass on that one.
For Santa’s brand, this is one of the places where we really get to see the magic happen. Some of Santa magic happens behind the scenes and we don’t really know what’s going on there. Thinking about how Santa makes his trip in one night makes my head spin.
With his sack, no matter how big he makes it, Santa has got to pepper a little extra Christmas magic to fit all the gifts in there. This adds to the mystical and fun qualities of Santa’s brand. And that feeling of anticipation of what Santa’s going to bring with his magic sack is a big part of what makes the holidays feel special.
Catchphrase – HoHoHo
Santa’s HoHoHo catchphrase is one of the strongest parts of his brand. Even just now when I read it back to myself, I hear Santa’s booming yet cheerful voice shouting HoHoHo into the night. To me this catchphrase encapsulates Santa as powerful and mighty but someone who uses that power to bring good and joy.
Some of the things that make this a strong catchphrase for Santa’s brand are it’s short, simple, and easy to remember. It can’t be confused with other laughs. It’s also in alignment with his jolly brand.
Not only is this a great catchphrase, Santa’s got it cornered. Imagine if you said ‘HoHoHo’ instead of ‘haha’ or ‘lol’ while messaging your friends and family. They’d probably ask if something was going on with you that day.
MINDSCAPE Brand Analysis
While we were just having some fun today, brand analysis is something we take very seriously when it comes to our clients. If you’d like to be one of those clients, we’re happy to talk with you about the needs of your business.