When the leaves start changing color is when people start thinking about Halloween. Halloween is a funny holiday because despite it being one of society’s favourite celebrations, it’s not an official holiday in North America.
Originating from old European traditions, specifically the ancient Celtic celebration of SamHain, Halloween used to be known as All Hallows Eve and was once a time where people wore costumes and lit bonfires to scare off demons.
Now, instead of warding off demons we’re decorating our homes as graveyards and horror scenes while eating copious amounts of candy.
But Halloween is typically the second most important holiday for retailers and for good reason. Last year it was reported that Americans shoppers spent 8.6 billion dollars on Halloween related items. From costumes to decorations and candy, Halloween is a perfect opportunity for all businesses.
This year, it’s expected that consumers will break the record in Halloween consumption by spending more than $9.1 billion in U.S. retail sales.
Obsession with Halloween isn’t just about candy though. Clothing, home décor, food, and attractions are all part of that huge spending. For example, a 2011 study from the National Retail Federation found that the average American was spending more than $70.00 for Halloween. Shoppers plan to spend the most (about $3.4 billion in total) on costumes only.
But the big spenders aren’t the older adults preparing for their families and kids. According to a Harris Poll Online survey of more than 2,000 U.S. adults, conducted on behalf CIT Bank, millennials will be responsible for most of that. The average young adult will be spending $183!!
This isn’t all that surprising seeing as a 2003 study by Van Boven and Gilovich showed that participants are more satisfied and happy with experiential purchases than material purchases.
It’s easy to chalk this spending up to irresponsibility and distorted priorities of a young person, but it’s not as simple as that. Young people are more moved to spend money on experiences than they are on material purchases.
Millennials care more about the experience than the brand which is also why no-name brands are doing so much better with young adults than branded products.
But there’s hope! You can take advantage of this shift in mindset by playing into experience related marketing strategies. Here are seven online marketing ideas that you can use for Halloween or adapt for any other holiday.
1) Halloween Themed Logo
Halloween themed or any holiday specific themed logo is a fun way to promote your brand and get it noticed for creativity. Of course, your logo should always be recognizable and have elements representing your brand but there’s nothing more fun than adding some holiday spirit with elements of Halloween to your logo. This is an easy way to get your customers interacting with your brand with comments, likes, and shares. Especially if your new logo is quirky or funny.
For example, Google is good at this.
2) Add spooky Elements to Your Website
From random themed pop-up promotions to invisible deals. You can do a lot by adding some Halloween flair to your online presence.
3) Halloween Newsletter
A Halloween Newsletter can allow you to share holiday specific promotions, events in your town and area and provide you with an opportunity for easy content. Plus, people are already gearing up for the holiday so why not give them another reason to read?
4) Branded Giveaways
Trick or treat! Spread your logo and brand by giving away branded swag with purchases. This will increase brand equity by providing an extra experience and a positive association for that month. Aside from Christmas, Halloween is the biggest holiday for consumer spending. Not to mention the affordability of promotional Halloween giveaways like trick-or-treat bags make it possible for even the smallest of companies to get noticed and get into consumers’ consideration. It also doesn’t hurt to have your logo floating around in various places. Spooky.
5) Virtual Trick or Treating
Virtual trick or treating is when you partner up with other businesses to give away products or promotions. Get businesses to give away free products or discounts to increase shopping from niche customers. Create graphics or guides that show which businesses are a part of your virtual trick or treating campaign and list what they’re offering. Promote the businesses on your e-mail lists and social media while having your partnered businesses do the same.
6) Hold a Contest
Nothing is as important as consumer interaction. The more public interactions you can generate, the more real and trustworthy your brand becomes. Consumer interactions help increase brand equity and what better way to have your customers interact with you than by holding a themed contest. Have participants sharing your posts on social media and expand your online presence through contests. Use a holiday’s hype to boost your contest exposure.
7) Create an Online Guide
Whether or not that’s an infographic, a newsletter or a downloadable guide, having a free tool to help your specific niche navigate Halloween is a great way to make you an authority in your industry. For example, with a service like Ghostit, having a specific downloadable guide on how to navigate Halloween marketing and building an online presence for small to medium-sized businesses would be perfect! In fact, we could just take this blog, cut it down to its main points to make it succinct, create fun graphics to go along with it and make it a downloadable tool to be shared online.