Santa Claus must have an analytics team!

Last week my son asked me if Santa Claus was getting him a gift, I told him what parents usually say:
– Well, first Santa will have to check if you have been a good boy and let’s see what he finds out.
– How is he going to know how every children behaved?
– He must have a great team working with him!
This father son conversation led me to think how would Santa Claus make so many decisions this busy time of the year, only with the help of a very, very big Analytics team! Here’s why.
All children in the world who believe in Santa are the largest loyal customer community a brand can have. Never mind if they leave after growing up, it’s parents who guarantee Santa Claus a constant amount of business every year by perpetuating these fairy tale stories, which by the way, are good to encourage children’s imagination and understand that believing in fantasy is acceptable and healthy up to a certain age.
Starting with recording and organizing all children requests is a huge task, Santa’s team will need a large scale Tibco project to collect and populate a well modeled database. That’s when fast and friendly reports may help Santa order gifts from his many and various suppliers.
Now think about the data sources; how will Santa Claus collect data about children’s behaviour? Of course he may access school’s information systems to collect grades and teachers reports, but performance at school isn’t enough to fairly evaluate all their actions and doings, Santa must be aware of how kids behave at home and that’s why he needs a bunch of data scientists to perform sentiment analysis over social network postings.
What about the delivery process, can you imagine how many addresses Santa and its helpers must go to in such a short period? Fortunately for them, geoanalytics can provide optimized routing, avoiding air traffic, and find the best reindeer parking spot.
Even after Christmas’s night is important to prepare all this data for the following year and it’s here that predictive analytics will answer questions like which games, dolls and toys are trendy? Will it compensate moving Santa’s packaging factory to Asia? Will reindeer’s suffer with climate changes?
You see, in a father’s imagination, there’s also space for XMas fantasy! Have a happy season!

Pedro Marques
Polarising Consultant

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