Halloween is an ideal opportunity for businesses to connect with customers in festive, special ways. There are lots of different ways to show your Halloween spirit with various marketing campaigns. The following Halloween promotions may spur unique ideas that you can use to market your business this fall.
What Is Halloween Marketing?
Halloween marketing can include any activity that helps your business appeal to customers throughout the Halloween season. Some activities may include specific campaigns like videos or social media posts.
However, other businesses may benefit simply by putting up Halloween decorations and inviting local customers to shop for candy or spooky treats.
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Benefits of Halloween Marketing Campaigns for Small Business
Different Halloween promotion ideas offer various benefits to businesses. But the following list includes some general ways that launching a Halloween marketing campaign may help your business:
- Catch customers’ attention: Decorating your store or changing up your website for Halloween can grab people’s attention simply because it’s different. People have Halloween on their brains this time of year, so it’s an easy way to appeal to them.
- Sell relevant products: If your company sells candy, decor, costumes, or clothing, Halloween may help you increase sales. So use the holiday in your marketing to call people’s attention to your inventory.
- Appeal as a festive brand: If someone loves Halloween, they may be more likely to connect with brands that also share this interest. Simply decorating your location or sharing Halloween content on social media can create this connection.
- Increase foot traffic: Eye-catching signs, decor, special events, and freebies can help you bring new people through your door. Even if they don’t buy something right away, a positive experience may keep them coming back.
- Garner brand recognition: Even online businesses can benefit from Halloween marketing ideas if these promotions bring extra press or shares online. If you’re able to increase brand awareness, customers may be more likely to buy from you in the future.
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Halloween-Themed Marketing Ideas for Small Businesses
Lots of businesses focus on the Christmas holiday season, but Halloween also offers plenty of opportunities for unique marketing ideas. Here are some ways to take advantage of the spooky season and promote your business this year.
1. Give Away Branded Treats and Halloween Candy
Host a trick-or-treating event or take part in your city’s normal Halloween festivities by passing out candy. Candy companies often let companies print custom wrappers with your name, logo, or a simple Halloween message. So offer these custom treats for a memorable holiday experience.
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2. Host a Halloween Costume Photo Contest
If you want to run a Halloween contest, host a costume event where people can show off their best looks in person or online. For virtual businesses, have people submit photos on your website or social media accounts. In-person, encourage people to dress up for a special event. Then offer prizes or discounts to the winners. You may even have categories like scariest or most creative.
3. Hold a Pumpkin Carving Contest
Another contest idea involves pumpkin carving. Either host an event in your store or allow people to submit photos of their carved pumpkins online. Carve your own with your company’s logo or tagline and display them in front of your store leading up to the holiday.
4. Host a Halloween-themed Scavenger Hunt
For local businesses, create a scavenger hunt that increases foot traffic throughout your business district. Partner with other businesses or your city’s downtown development authority to bring in more customers.
5. Change Your Storefront Windows
Your storefront is one of the first things people notice about your location. So add some spider webs, skeletons, or other spooky decors to grab people’s attention as they pass by. You can even upload photos of your displays to your website and social media platforms throughout the season.
6. Feature Unique DIY Projects
Find creative ways for people to integrate your products into Halloween projects. For example, if you sell clothing, integrate a few pieces into a DIY costume and share it online or with in-store signage. Then let customers share their own projects and shout them out online.
7. Host a Halloween Party
For in-person businesses, host a party in your location and invite all your top customers. Send it out to your email list or put signage up around town. Include fun elements like festive treats or costumes to make the festivities stand out.
Online businesses with returning customers may even offer a virtual party on Zoom or similar platforms.
8. Create Spooky Product Names
You don’t have to change your actual product line to make it spooky. Instead, simply update names with festive titles. For example, a local coffee shop could name their special blend “witch’s brew” for the season. Or a clothing company may describe colors as “jack-o-lantern orange” or “black cat.”
9. Offer a Haunted Experience
Bring in customers for a haunted house or similar experience in your location. This may take some extra setup, but it can make for a memorable experience for families or adults, depending on the content. If you have a large location, this may just require a small part of your building. Then you can direct visitors to your store or office afterward. However, small businesses may just offer this experience on a single day and shut down their normal operations.
10. Add Halloween Elements to Your Website
Online businesses can still decorate for Halloween. Simply add spooky elements like spiders crawling across the page or scary eyes blinking to your home page, or create Halloween landing pages for people who visit from various holiday-themed ads or campaigns.
11. Make Spooky Video Content
Many people like being scared. And even more people like scaring their friends. Take advantage of this by creating scary content in your online videos. This may look like a normal-seeming video that suddenly has a scary witch jump out at the end. You’ll get lots of attention online and probably plenty of shares.
12. Bundle Relevant Products
Increase Halloween-themed sales by grouping products together. For example, a grocery store may offer bags of candy along with a couple of totes and maybe a drink for mom and dad. Brand this type of offering as a trick-or-treating kit.
- READ MORE: 40 Halloween Crafts to Sell
13. Encourage Employees to Dress in Costumes
Your employees can also get in on the Halloween fun by coming to work in costume throughout the season. This can also make the experience memorable for customers who visit. If they don’t want to wear full costumes, consider making them Halloween-themed shirts or accessories that may be easier to wear on a daily basis.
14. Create a Halloween Themed Hashtag
Increase social media engagement throughout the season by creating a hashtag for people to share costumes, decor, or other relevant content. For example, a home decor brand may include a hashtag for people to show off how they style rooms for Halloween.
15. Offer Halloween Photo Opportunities
In-person businesses may also gain more attention by setting up a Halloween-themed photo booth or backdrop. Offer a unique sign or set up some skeletons and mummies that people can pose with. Then they may share those photos on their own social media platforms, tagging your business account or location.
16. Design Limited Edition Halloween Products
Offer limited edition Halloween-themed products to attract customers looking for unique seasonal items. For example, if you own a bakery, create special Halloween-themed pastries, cookies, or cakes.
If you own a clothing store, design Halloween-themed t-shirts, hats, or accessories. Promote these limited edition items on your social media platforms and website to generate excitement and encourage quick purchases before they run out.
17. Collaborate with Other Local Businesses
Team up with other local businesses to create a Halloween-themed event or promotion. For example, a coffee shop, bookstore, and clothing store could collaborate on a ‘spooky night out’ event, where customers get discounts at each location for visiting all three. Or, businesses could collaborate on a Halloween-themed giveaway, where customers can enter to win a prize package that includes gifts from all participating businesses.
18. Create a ‘Trick or Treat’ Loyalty Program
During the Halloween season, create a special ‘Trick or Treat’ loyalty program where customers earn ‘treats’ or rewards for making purchases or visiting your store. For example, for every purchase, customers could earn a ‘treat’ stamp on a loyalty card. After earning a certain number of stamps, they could redeem their card for a special treat, such as a discount, free item, or exclusive offer.
19. Host a Spooky Storytelling Event
Organize a spooky storytelling event at your location or online. Invite local authors, actors, or storytellers to share their scariest stories, or encourage customers to share their own spooky experiences. Promote the event on your social media platforms, website, and in-store to attract a crowd. You could even offer special discounts or promotions for attendees.
20. Run a ‘Monster Makeover’ Contest
Invite your customers to participate in a ‘Monster Makeover’ contest. Participants could submit photos of themselves, their pets, or even their homes decked out in their best Halloween decorations or costumes. Share the submissions on your social media platforms and encourage people to vote for their favorites. Offer prizes for the winners, such as gift cards, discounts, or special promotions.
21. Sponsor a Local Halloween Event
Consider sponsoring a local Halloween event, such as a pumpkin patch, haunted house, or Halloween parade. This is a great way to show support for your community and get your business name out there. Plus, it offers the opportunity to interact with potential customers and distribute promotional materials, such as flyers, coupons, or branded treats.
Types of Halloween Marketing Ideas
|Event Based||- Hold a Pumpkin Carving Contest
- Host a Halloween-themed Scavenger Hunt
- Host a Halloween Party
- Offer a Haunted Experience
- Host a Spooky Storytelling Event
- Run a 'Monster Makeover' Contest
- Sponsor a Local Halloween Event
|Decoration Based||- Change Your Storefront Windows
- Add Halloween Elements to Your Website
- Offer Halloween Photo Opportunities
|Product Based|| Give Away Branded Treats and Halloween Candy
- Feature Unique DIY Projects
- Create Spooky Product Names
- Bundle Relevant Products
- Design Limited Edition Halloween Products
- Collaborate with Other Local Businesses
- Create a 'Trick or Treat' Loyalty Program
|Social Media Engagement||- Make Spooky Video Content
- Encourage Employees to Dress in Costumes
- Create a Halloween Themed Hashtag
What Is the Best Form of Marketing for Halloween?
The best Halloween marketing strategies vary depending on your company’s niche and goals. For local businesses, hosting a Halloween event like trick or treating or a haunted house may bring in lots of customers. For online businesses, custom hashtags or a photo contest for costumes or pumpkins may garner more engagement.
What Should Your Brand Post on Social Media for Halloween?
Halloween can be an ideal time to post user-generated content on social media. For example, encourage customers to share their own photos of costumes or DIY projects they create using your products. Then re-share their photos and tag them to increase engagement and show your appreciation.
When Should You Start Selling Halloween Products?
Halloween-related merchandise tends to sell well before the official holiday. The exact timeline depends on the product. Items that require some planning, like Halloween decor or costumes may go out on the shelves by September or even August. However, trick-or-treating candy tends to be more relevant in the week or two leading up to Halloween. Items then generally leave shelves quickly to make way for the official holiday shopping season.
What Should Employees Do For Halloween?
Employees can celebrate Halloween in various ways, depending on your workplace culture. You may host a party and allow them to come into work wearing Halloween costumes. You could send out fun emails or offer spooky-themed treats in the break room. Companies with a family-centric atmosphere may even offer a truck-or-treat event for employees to bring their kids. Let your team offer input to determine the best celebrations for the season.
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