Santa Sues Over Unauthorized Image Use

December 23rd, 2010

North Pole (AP—Arctic Press)  Santa Claus is coming to town. And he’s stopping at the courthouse.

Santa Claus has filed a lawsuit against virtually every major manufacturer, retailer and media outlet, claiming unauthorized use of image. The suit seeks unspecified damages for instances dating back more than a hundred years.

“Santa is a globally recognized icon and thousands of companies have unfairly used his image to promote their products and services,” declared Paul E. Ester, Santa’s attorney. “Santa is entitled to control over how his image is used as well as compensation for the use of his image.”

“It’s not really about the money,” explained Santa at a press conference. “Although heaven knows my expenses keep climbing—what with the escalating costs of raw materials, ever-increasing demands by the elves union, and don’t even get me started on the skyrocketing price of Reindeer Chow.”

“No,” continued Santa, “it’s more that I’d like some say in how people portray me. Some of the commercials I’ve seen lately are just downright embarrassing.”

Santa Claus—or Kris Kringle, as he’s also known—is the world’s best-known and most-loved celebrity, after Oprah. His favorability ratings have remained high in good times and bad, making him a popular choice for businesses who want to link their brand to his cachet in an effort to boost sales. As a result, thousands of companies around the world have used his image for promotional purposes through the years.

“And not one of them,” points out Ester, “has ever asked permission, let alone paid a cent in royalties.”

An executive at a major manufacturing company, who spoke on condition of anonymity, for fear of being placed on the “naughty” list, stated, “We don’t believe the suit has any merit. Santa is a public figure and as such, falls into the “fair use” exception.”

An executive for a major discount retailing chain, who also spoke on condition of anonymity, went further, “Santa should be paying all of us. The reason he’s such a huge global brand is because he’s gotten billions of dollars in free publicity over the years.”

Santa’s attorney disagrees. “My client has been the basis of thousands of books, movies, TV shows, ad campaigns, toys, greeting cards and more. Everybody is making money off of Santa’s image but Santa.”

“What it comes down to,” Ester argued, “is fairness.”

Ester declined to comment on whether or not Jesus was considering a similar lawsuit.

How to Get More Referrals

December 14th, 2010

Sales ReferralsOne of the easiest ways to boost your sales is with referrals. A prospect who is referred to you is five times as likely to buy as any other type of prospect. And yet, too many salespeople, business owners and professionals don’t do a good job of asking for them.

Listen to my appearance on Breakthrough Business Strategies Radio with Michele Price as I share insights and tactics that will help you maximize your referrals. In less than ten minutes, you’ll discover:
• How to make asking for referrals easier than ever
• The best time to ask for referrals
• How to help your customer think of good referrals for you
• The two mistakes most salespeople make when asking for referrals
• A simple tactic to increase your referrals quickly
• And more!

To listen, just click on the link below. Or to download the segment to listen later, right-click the link and select “Save Target As…”

How to Get More Referrals, Don Cooper on Breakthrough Business Strategies Radio (mp3)

To learn more about Michele Price and listen to her interview other business experts on Breakthrough Business Strategies Radio (which I absolutely recommend), check out her web site: