Great Campaigns: Coca Cola – Black Santa

black santa

Coca-Cola revitalised its brand image and fostered important cultural debate by introducing a Black Santa Claus.

To revitalize its brand perception and reconnect with Brazilian consumers during the holiday season, Coca-Cola launched a groundbreaking campaign in Brazil featuring a Black Santa Claus. The initiative aimed to address racial tensions in the country while also promoting diversity and representation in mainstream media.

Coca-Cola identified a pressing need to improve its brand health in Brazil, particularly during the holidays when it was losing market share. The disconnect between the brand’s traditional Christmas messaging centered around snowy landscapes, and the reality of Brazil’s warm climate and diverse population posed a significant challenge. To bridge this gap and resonate with Brazilian consumers, Coca-Cola embarked on a bold strategy to reimagine the iconic figure of Santa Claus.

The Idea

Partnering with major TV broadcaster Globo, Coca-Cola collaborated on a Christmas special in the format of a soap opera, a popular genre in Brazil. This marked the first time in Brazilian television history that a soap opera featured an all-Black main cast, addressing the glaring lack of representation of black actors on screen. By leveraging this platform, Coca-Cola aimed to spark a cultural conversation about racial equality and promote inclusivity.

The Campaign

The Christmas special, titled “Together the Magic Happens,” introduced audiences to the first Black Santa Claus on Brazilian TV. This innovative portrayal of Santa Claus as a symbol of diversity and representation resonated deeply with viewers, challenging traditional norms and fostering a sense of inclusivity.

The storyline follows Orlando, a grandfather facing financial struggles, who takes on the role of a shopping mall Santa despite facing prejudice. As the narrative unfolds, Orlando’s transformation into the Coca-Cola Truck Tour Santa embodies the magic of the holiday season and underscores the brand’s commitment to social progress.


The campaign garnered widespread attention and acclaim, dominating social media discussions and trending as the #1 topic on Twitter. The Christmas special attracted over 15 million viewers on TV, representing a remarkable 66% increase in ratings. Additionally, the digital campaign generated more than 5 million impressions, further amplifying Coca-Cola’s message of diversity and inclusion.

By boldly embracing diversity and representation through the introduction of a Black Santa Claus, Coca-Cola succeeded in reinvigorating its brand image and fostering meaningful cultural dialogue. The campaign not only resonated with Brazilian consumers but also set a powerful precedent for inclusive advertising in mainstream media. Through its partnership with TV Globo and the creation of the groundbreaking Christmas special, Coca-Cola demonstrated its commitment to driving social change and promoting racial equality in Brazil.

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