Halloween Marketing Strategies for Event Professionals
Don’t look back: the boogeyman is right behind you. Act like you’re unaware; just stay still and focus on your screen. Then, tilt your eyes slowly to the top of the page and read the article’s title. Question: Is the boogeyman truly behind you, or did you just fall for our Halloween trick?
Pardon the eeriness (though expected given the focus of this post); we didn’t mean to scare you—if at all you were. We’re in the spirit of Halloween, and it’s only right that we set the tone! Halloween is an event that is widely celebrated. According to Investopedia, Halloween is the second-biggest retail holiday in the U.S, after Christmas. In 2021, Americans spent over $10.1 billion on Halloween.
It’s inferrable that Halloween has a huge economic impact on America and is highly valuable to its population. Brands leverage this period to engage new and existing audiences. This brings us to the purpose of this post, which is to highlight helpful concepts and tips, that can further improve event marketability.
Why is October 31st Halloween?
Halloween‘s origin can be traced to 2,000 years ago when the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain required people to light bonfires and wear costumes to scare away ghosts. In the 8th century, Pope Gregory III stipulated that November 1 will be the commemoration of all saints.
Later on, All Saints Day was integrated into some aspects of the Samhain tradition. The eve of all Saints day was called All Hallows Eve. Over time, it evolved into what is known as Halloween today; it became a tradition of telling horror stories, carving Jack-o-lanterns, and playing dress up, amongst others. This year’s celebration will be on a Monday (next week).
This year, we’re hyped up about Halloween for certain reasons: one being that the activities will be in person this year—although with safety guidelines implemented. Unlike the previous year’s celebration, it was colored by the social interaction limitations of the pandemic.
Conversely, the beauty of Halloween is in the shared experience. Secondly, we anticipate the numerous visual representations of characters and personalities through fashion and style.
5 Halloween-Inspired Marketing Strategies for Event Hosting
Halloween is characterized by 5 traditions, namely; making Jack-O’-Lanterns, wearing costumes, visiting haunted houses, trick or treating, and telling scary stories. It’s no doubt that US consumers are highly engaged in these activities, given the above-mentioned statistics.
Additionally, it’s an opportunity to increase your revenue, if you can apply these traditions to your marketing strategies during the festive period. Here are five strategies that you can tap into for your events:
1. Host a Halloween-themed event with clients—could be virtual
Hosting events is always a good marketing strategy. Typically impact-driven events are oriented toward achieving an end goal, which is great. However, it’s not a bad idea to host informal fun events once in a blue moon, to connect with clients on a deeper level. This is one of the seasons to make this happen.
Furthermore, themed parties have no limitations to creativity; so go crazy! Attendees can show up in various costumes, and carve Jack-O’-Lanterns.
Moreover, this doesn’t have to be an in-person event, so don’t worry too much about the cost of renting a venue or decorations. You can explore virtual solutions like InEvent, where you can customize 3D virtual lobbies, and integrate spooky A/V content and activities into your sessions.
2. Engage in costume challenge on social media
Wearing costumes is a fun activity. And with a single click, content travels far and wide on social media. Through social media, people influence the choice of costumes and showcase spookiness in the most creative ways.
Hashtags link people to a thread of posts, linked to a concept. Using Halloween-related hashtags on posts is an effective way to increase visibility. Additionally, it triggers FOMO. A recent report shows about 76.2 million #Halloween posts on Instagram, alongside 2.8 million tweets that are related to #HalloweenCostume.
You can create your own hashtags and enlist your target audience to use them in a costume challenge; these challenges can be linked to rewards like Halloween discounts or coupons.
3. Incorporate spooky Halloween games/activities
If you’re hosting a virtual event, you might want to stick with computer-mediated games. The experience is just as thrilling as the in-person experience. You can create spooky quizzes: this Quiz solution is a must-have for such an activity.
One way to make your events stand out is by working with a 3d art company to create eye-catching decorations and displays that capture the spooky spirit of Halloween.
Similarly, you can create cool challenges like a spooky escape room and immediately see the winners on the leaderboard. This would suffice for visiting a live haunted house. Alternatively, plug in third-party gaming solutions like Kahoot and Plants vs Zombies.
4. Offer eerie swags
Who doesn’t love swags? During Halloween, you either offer treats or get tricked. In this context, we can consider swags to be Halloween treats. Offering people treats evokes happiness and appreciation; the same applies to swags.
You can produce branded spooky swags and distribute them to your clients as a way of commending them for their continued support. Think of it as a potent marketing strategy.
Clients who’ll use or wear your swags— if it’s a T-shirt or a face cap, engage passively in outbound marketing. Cresting your logo and contact details on the swags enables potential clients or partners to easily identify and reach out to you.
5. Optimize your A/V content & Newsletters
Here, foley meets state-of-the-art visual images—but make ‘em spooky. Even if you don’t want to host Halloween-themed events, you should at least incorporate Halloween lingo into your communications )especially newsletters and video content). It just shows your audience that you’re partaking in the celebration.
In addition, you can amp up your content to higher levels of creativity by including eerie background tunes, and sound effects on your website/event landing pages whenever visitors click or act.
If you’re hosting events or initiating engaging challenges on social media in this period, you can create newsletter campaigns for promotions. Nonetheless, including videos in your videos is also an excellent strategy to arrest attention.
Another Way to optimize your content is leveraging hit songs that are relevant to Halloween, which you can play at the start of sessions.
Check out the Halloween playlist we’ve curated for you!
Statistics show that Halloween is a big event, particularly in America. By leveraging its influence, brands can reach out to new audiences and engage their clients. Following the five common traditions of Halloween—trick or treating, visiting haunted houses, telling horror stories, making Jack-O’-Lanterns, and wearing costumes, companies can create or optimize their marketing efforts in like manner for their events. They include but are not limited to hosting Halloween-themed events, optimizing A/V content, and offering eerie swags.
One more thing… don’t forget to lock your doors at night. We hear the movie, Halloween Ends is out. You know what that means right? Michael Myers is on the go. Be vigilant, but enjoy the spookiness.