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Tuesday, December 28, 2004

 
CONSIGLI A LAPO - 9

Il boom del Chrismukkah, Natale multiculturale, "venduto" con un merchandising vincente.

di Michele Boroni
Il Foglio - 28 Dicembre 2004

Adesso che è passato lo possiamo dire: il Natale, visto esclusivamente come (evento di marketing", ha ormai giocato tutte le sue carte. Inoltre l’immaginario e l’iconografia costruitagli intorno non corrisponde più allo spirito dei tempi. Anche per questo il 2004 in USA è stato l’anno del Chrismukkah: un mix tra la festività cristiana (Christmas) e quella ebraica (Hannukkah).
Tutto iniziò lo scorso anno, durante una puntata di O.C. (la serie tv, un cult anche in Italia) in cui Seth, uno dei protagonisti, spiegava agli amici che il padre ebreo e la madre cristiana avevano deciso di unire i due eventi religiosi e creare così una nuova festività.
Quello che era nato semplicemente come un argomento originale per un serial del prime time, è diventato una sorta di evento mediatico: Michelle e Ron Gompertz coppia cristiano-ebrea di Livingston, Montana, vedendo la puntata notarono che la situazione non era poi così paradossale e che molti famiglie multiculturali si trovavano a dover scendere a compromessi per combinare i due festeggiamenti, così iniziarono ad inviare ad amici e parenti biglietti che riportavano l’augurio di un buon Chrismukkah. La voce e l’interesse si sparse e la coppia, con spirito imprenditoriale, creò un sito nel quale si scambiavano idee e ricette per come festeggiare la nuova festività e dove venivano venduti una serie di biglietti di auguri e merchandising vario che in questi ultimi mesi hanno avuto un successo clamoroso.

Il Chrismukkah - che dura dal 7 Dicembre (dal primo giorno del Chanukah, conosciuta anche come Festa Ebraica delle Luci) fino al giorno di Natale - non ha la pretesa di diventare una vera e propria festa religiosa, ma piuttosto un evento che cerca di fondere e amalgamare le tradizioni e gli aspetti ludici legati alle vacanze dei rispettivi culti e, non ultimo, un simpatico pretesto per vendere merchandising e creare nuove abitudini di consumo. Gli stessi Gompertz e Josh Schwartz, il brillante autore di O.C., hanno infatti creato una linea di merchandising tra cui spicca il vendutissimo Yarmaclaus, il cappello nato da un mix tra il berretto con la nappa di Babbo Natale e il Yarmulke, lo zuccotto ebraico (chiamato anche Kippah), che lo stesso protagonista di O.C. indossava nel corso della puntata proprio mentre si ingegnava a trovare la strategia giusta per lanciare sul mercato il Chrismukkah e renderlo più popolare di Halloween.
La realtà sta superando la fiction visto che Procter & Gamble, Seagram e FedEx ci stanno facendo già dei pensierini.

Mentre qui in Italia siamo ancora al Telethon Rai presentato dalla Carlucci, negli Stati Uniti e in Gran Bretagna a Natale sono molte le aziende (quelle a fini di lucro) che si mettono in mostra per finanziare e sponsorizzare operazioni di solidarietà e di beneficenza. Quest’anno le marketing charity campaigns sono triplicate rispetto al 2000 e il pubblico, specialmente quello dei giovanissimi, pare apprezzare molto.
Una delle campagne più di successo in USA è quella organizzata dalla Lance Armstrong Foundation guidata dal ciclista americano, assurto ormai ad eroe nazionale, che è riuscito a sconfiggere il cancro e tornare a correre da campione: il suo braccialetto portafortuna è diventato un accessorio cool e attraverso una massiccia e diffusa rete di vendita che ha coinvolto Nike e la catena dei Discovery stores in due mesi sono stati venduti 150.000 braccialetti alla settimana per un totale di 28 milioni di dollari a beneficio della ricerca sul cancro.

In questo periodo poi chi si trova nei ristoranti più fighi di Londra (dal Claridge di Gordon Ramsey alla Locanda Locatelli) noterà, insieme al conto, un bigliettino scritto splendidamente dall’attore Stephen Fry in cui si comunica che se la cena è stata piacevole e qualora lo si voglia, potrà essere aggiunta una sterlina che porterà conforto e speranza agli homeless della città. L’operazione si chiama StreetSmart è organizzata dalla società Bloomberg e coinvolge le maggiori città della Gran Bretagna. Dagli inglesi in fatto di stile e understatment abbiamo solo da imparare.

Anche Gap, ABC’s Carpet & Home e perfino il brand macho Harley-Davidson questo Natale si sono prodigati per cause buone e giuste: molti analisti sostengono che il motivo principale è che la pubblicità, le sales promotion e i tradizionali strumenti del marketing ormai non funzionano più e che per combattere il calo dei consumi e le catene dei discount è necessario trovare nuovi approcci più creativi: la “beneficenza” è uno di questi. Le stesse condizioni economiche non proprio floride in cui versano gli Stati Uniti e specialmente le fasce più emarginate rappresentano un impulso per l’americano medio a sentirsi colpevole e perciò ad acquistare non solo per soddisfare se stesso.
C’è infine chi (malignamente) sostiene che la categoria che veramente ha bisogno di essere aiutata e supportata è proprio quella dei commercianti e dei manager delle grosse corporation. E, come dire, in questo caso si gioca in casa.

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