Siemens Gives North Pole an Upgrade in New Digital Campaign

'Santa's Factory' Shows How Siemens Makes Manufacturing More Efficient

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Santa doesn't have to worry about defective toys or a slow sleigh anymore, because Siemens Corp. just upgraded the North Pole with new technology.

That's the theme of Siemens' new digital campaign, "Santa's Factory," created by Ogilvy & Mather New York.

The campaign includes a microsite, 15-second animated videos (below), digital ads and social media, and shows how its technology -- from wind turbines to software -- helps factories improve operations. The company declined to disclose the campaign budget.

"We were in a brainstorming session [with Ogilvy], and we were trying to figure out how to tell Siemens' 'future of manufacturing' story in a different way," said Christina Bauer, director of branding and advertising at Siemens. "We wanted to raise awareness around that story, and showcase our technology for a broad audience -- not just a tech audience -- and bring it to life in a fun environment."

So it created a virtual tour of Santa's workshop, featuring different parts of the assembly line where elves are making toys.

The tour starts with an animated video of Santa listening to kids' Christmas wishes.

"Let me guess -- you want a teddy bear, too?" Santa asks a little girl sitting on his lap. "Good thing I upgraded my factory with digital enterprise software suite to automate our operations. Embedded sensors monitor performance and let me know if my machines are being naughty or nice."

The little girl is not impressed. However, when she whips out her phone and shows Santa a picture of the toy she wants, he gets the point.

"You don't want a teddy bear, you want a what? Oh, a new 'gotta-have-it' toy," Santa says. "No problem. With our new TIA [totally integrated automation] portal software helping control and manage automated production processes in my factory, we can easily keep up with rapidly changing markets."

In the virtual tour, users can click on different areas of Santa's workshop to see how Siemens' technology can help improve manufacturing operations.

For example, a "new toy alert" provides an update of the most popular toys and helps the elves improve workflow processes. And to increase the speed of Santa's sleigh, "Project Dasher" uses Siemens' PLM (product lifecycle management) software to crank out prototypes with hundreds of variations in design and materials.

"This is really a first for us -- combining a fictional, iconic story and trying to highlight the importance of manufacturing in a fun and emotional way," Ms. Bauer said.

Throughout the site, users can get more information on Siemens products by clicking on links.

"Santa's Factory" is being promoted through media buys with BuzzFeed, Wired and LinkedIn.

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