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Santa Claus' Business Is Slipping; Text Messages Would Help

Aug 17, 2007
North Pole -- Who is the greatest businessman of all-time? No, it's not Henry Ford, nor is it John D. Rockefeller. Donald Trump? Give me a break.

The greatest businessman of all time is, without a doubt, Santa Claus.

Think about it. His customers return year after year. He has a factory that churns out toys 24/7 with little overhead. He has loyal employees (of course, there aren't a lot of jobs elsewhere for elves these days). He has a promotions department that secures prime visibility in crowded malls and gets him grand marshal positions in parades. He also has a public relations staff that writes songs, poems, and even produces television shows with him as the star. And talk about customer service. He knows what you want, often without your even telling him.

But, sometimes I think Santa Claus is slipping a bit the last few years. He hasn't really embraced new technology very well. His workers still use basic tools from the pre-Industrial Revolution. His mode of transportation still involves livestock (and don't tell me one animal with a light bulb on his nose is innovative). His ordering process is downright archaic. I mean, who writes letters any more?

What Santa Claus needs is text messaging. Worldwide, 350 billion text messages are sent each month, but how many of you have ever received one, or sent one, via the North Pole? Moreover, 15% of those 350 billion text messages are considered commercial text messages. Don't you think an opt-in text message blast would be a great way for Santa to get rid of some of his closeout inventory? I hear there's a warehouse at the North Pole that still has half a million eight-tracks in it!

Did you ever watch the late news on television on Christmas Eve? There's usually some cheesy graphic there with a picture of Santa flying over some other country. In the eastern United States, I think he's usually in the Czech Republic during our 11 o'clock newscast. Well, I often stay up late--even on Christmas Eve. I would love to get a text message to know when Santa is getting close to my hometown so I can get to bed on time. Besides, I've heard Santa is a bit of a player and has been seen kissing Mommies under the Christmas tree. If even US Airways can notify me of its flight arrivals by text message, I would think Santa could with all those clever engineers he has on his staff.

If you've ever flown in the winter, you know how weather can be a problem, especially if you're flying into O'Hare. Weather delays last year in Canada made Santa late in arriving to Alaska. Had he received text message weather reports, Santa could have re-arranged his flight plan and been on time. Fortunately, for the children of Barrows, Alaska, where it's dark 24 hours a day this time of year, Santa was able to sneak in after deadline and still deliver the goods without being seen.

Ordering is another issue. How many of you still have envelopes and stamps in your house? Plus, there's the issue of the postal service losing your snail mail. I sent a letter last year to the North Pole that must not have arrived because I'm still waiting for the Lamborghini I asked for. With text messages, I could have sent in my Christmas list to Santa Claus through a short code, say 72682. With a simple online interactive text messaging solution, Santa could confirm receipt and tell me if I've been bad or good.

Maybe that's what happened to my Lamborghini.
About the Author
Bob Bentz is co-owner of Advanced Telecom Services. ATS provides
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