Persuasion Notebook offers quick hits on the business of persuasion from The Globe and Mail's marketing and advertising reporter, Susan Krashinsky. Read more on The Globe's marketing page and follow Susan on Twitter @Susinsky.
Santa Claus is coming to town. To your town. To your house, specifically. Now there's proof.
Believing in the man with the beard and his posse of obedient caribou is, for many, an essential part of the innocence of childhood. This holiday season, parents looking to keep their kids' faith intact are getting a little help from a bit of digital wizardry and – what else – an advertising agency.
Toronto agency Zulu Alpha Kilo has created an application for mobile devices called Kringl. Free to download, the app allows people to make a video of their home, and inserts an image of Santa to make it appear as if he's paid you a visit. Options include Santa checking his list twice while standing near your tree, scarfing down your cookies and milk, and of course, rummaging around in that big bag looking for your presents.
A few clicks and users are ready to prove to their children (or perhaps a particularly dim-witted cousin) that the big guy – who watches you sleep and knows when you're awake and breaks into your house through vulnerable chimney spaces – is for real.
The app, which works with Apple or Android mobile devices (sorry, BlackBerry, you're still on many developers' naughty list) also has a charitable goal: while it is free, it encourages users to consider a donation to Make-A-Wish Canada.