Everyone knows that Santa’s outfit is traditionally red (red coat, red hat and so on). But this is in fact not true! Santa’s attire was traditionally green until coca-cola adopted Mr Clause as their Christmas time promotion. Then they naturally dressed Santa in red clothes rather than green ones to match their bottles and from that day it has stuck. And that is why Santa has a red coat.
Lets hav a look how the things got changed…:
In the 1930s the American soft drink giant Coca-Cola pumped large portions of dollars into making their drink more popular at Christmas time. They way the did this, through billboards and magazine adverts was by hijacking another icon of Christmas – Santa Claus himself.
St Nicholas, the charitable inhabitant of Northern Europe has lived under many aliases, the most familiar to us being Father Christmas and Santa Claus. As we all know the traditional colours of Christmas are red and green – holly and berries seen against the background of a snow scene. Santa was usually portrayed wearing green, purple, red or blue clothing as he delivered presents to the townsfolk. He usually wore fur, and he was portrayed as both large and small.
Coca Cola has achieved the notable achievement of altering the colour of Santa’s outfit, and also changing our perception of the old man. If we or our children were to draw a picture of Santa , he would conform to the ideal laid out on Coca Cola billboards from this era.
The colour of Santa’s garments was changed to red to align it more clearly with Coca Cola. A red, white and black can be all you need to go and buy a fizzy drink.
Does it matter what colour Santa’s – coat is? Absolutely not, but it does serve to illustrate the way that Ideas travel beyond the confines of our brains. Humans copy Ideas or instructions perpetually, and it should be easy to see that the Idea given an extra push will be copied even more than others. The myth goes that the massive Coca-Cola Christmas campaigns ensured that it was their Idea of Santa that was adopted by most of the western world, and his green outfit came to be phased out by everyone. This urban myth has become entrenched, and actually works out quite well for Coca-Cola. The myth places Coke at the heart of Christmas and at the heart of our culture, which only serves to fulfil its mythical status. Coca-Cola knew what they were doing. Their brand now becomes fused with Christmas every time we see a Santa. The Consequences of the company-s actions are the changing of an icon for their own purpose. We think we duplicate their advertisements not because we are slaves to corporate fashions, but because we know no different. The red genie cannot be put back in its Coke can, and the Christmas cards cannot be returned to sender.