Surprise Consumers with Halloween Marketing Tricks and Treats

Do you give your consumers a trick or a treat? That’s the big question when it comes to Halloween marketing. How does your brand fit in with the ghosts, goblins or ghoulish sales promoted during the year’s most frightful holiday? How about both! Researchers have found that key phrases which include “Halloween” can drive a spooktacluar 506 million searches a year, and that consumer interest begins to peak in September.

The bigger the holiday, the larger the interest among the consumers and the associated volume of search on Google. By effectively targeting your marketing materials to upcoming holidays, you can capture the interest of consumers who are attuned to the season.

Halloween Marketing Tricks

Although considered the lesser half of the common Halloween phrase, we’ve pulled together some creative Halloween marketing tricks to target your upcoming content on one of the most beloved holidays of the year.

Leverage Legends and Common Creepers

This technique has been used for centuries, so why stop now? Content creators have been writing frightening tales that include Halloween favorites from Dracula to Frankenstein, and there are numerous other non-copyrighted characters to draw from for your creepy marketing efforts.

The inclusion of brand characters has been found to increase engagement on social media networks as much as 585%. Creating custom content for your Halloween marketing that combines your brand’s messaging with a well-known Halloween legend could significantly increase your appeal and shareability during this time of year. By leveraging old tales and new platforms, you can watch your metrics soar (dare we say raise from the dead?) at a rate that could only be described as “spooky.”

User-Generated Treats

A foolproof way to get your consumers chatting is to ask them about their Halloween plans. Whether you’re calling for photos of costumes or images of their Jack-O-Lantern, inviting your audience to share their custom content in a Halloween themed contest can provide you with a wealth of resources to share on social media or your blog.

Don’t get scared; even if your company’s products or services have little to do with pumpkin carving or vampire fangs, it’s still an incredibly effective way to increase Halloween marketing engagement. IdeaLaunch reports that publishing user-generated Halloween content to social channels can lead to a 300% increase in website traffic.

Spookify Existing Content

Whether you’ve been bitten with zombie fever or not, the US Center for Disease Control (CDC) took full advantage of this national obsession to gain over 77,000 Facebook likes and generated 2,357 tweets. Thanks to a custom content they created called “Disaster Preparedness 101: Zombie Apocalypse Guide,” the CDC was able to leverage the existing buzz that surrounds the popular television show The Walking Dead and gain huge attention. And let’s be honest, we all need to know how to survive if zombies were to really rule the world.

You may not have time to create a brand-new zombie or vampire-themed offer, but think about how you might be able to add an undead twist to an existing whitepaper or blog post for Halloween marketing. You could see similar scary results.

Halloween Marketing Treats

Now on to the highlights of this sweet holiday; some of our favorite Halloween marketing treats! Check out these examples of fun brand engagement methods through Halloween marketing.

Cheetos: TP Project

Bombs away! Become part of Chester Cheetah’s Toilet Paper missions in this interactive game. Cheetos’ mischievous mascot tempts cheesy fans to throw digital toilet paper over various buildings in the spirit of Halloween. Select your location through Google Maps, fly in a helicopter with Chester to scope out the location and then hit the red button to TP your destination from above. You can even tag your friends in social posts and share your TP work if you TP-ed their house! Any location around the world is fair game in the TP Project, a great example of interactive content.

Progressive: Dress Like Flo

As far as company mascots go, Flo has been a successful one for Progressive. It should also come as no surprise that many people dress as Flo for Halloween. Noticing this trend on social media, Progressive created downloadable content, knick-knacks and costume accents to encourage more people to dress like Flo and share their Flo creation photos on social media. Their microsite offers how-to video tips if you make your costume at home along with templates to download, or (for the lazy) a complete Flo costume ready for purchase.

Petco: Make a Scene

Not only is it fun for kids of all ages to dress up on Halloween, but it’s even cuter to see our four legged friends in pet costumes! Petco launched the adorable “Make a Scene” Halloween photo contest where fans were encouraged to share a photo of their furry friend dressed up for Halloween. The winner received a $25,000 cash prize and runners-up were treated with Petco gift cards. Check out the hashtag #PetcoSceneContest for submissions.


Be Spooktacular

Have fun with marketing in October! Halloween is one of the few times each year when any brand can be silly, scary or just down right strange and get away with it. What better way to showcase your company’s fun side than with some creative Halloween marketing campaigns?

How are you planning to integrate Halloween marketing concepts into your content marketing strategy? Share your favorite brand Halloween campaigns that you’ve seen over the years in the comments below.

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