Halloween Marketing Campaigns

Over the years, Halloween has become an increasingly lucrative market, and with UK citizens now spending over £400 million per year on the spooky event, businesses work on new marketing campaigns every year to entice their audiences. From retail to the food industry, toy chains to hospitality, it seems that everybody has jumped on the Halloween marketing train. But in such a competitive time of year, companies must get their campaigns right.

Halloween this year will be unlike any other, and in the first major international event since COVID-19, many people are confused about how to enjoy Halloween in 2020 whilst staying safe and adhering to Government guidelines. We thought we’d take a look at a couple of previously successful marketing campaigns and compare them to businesses that have utilised the current situation of the pandemic to create great advertisements.

Fanta – ‘Too Dark?’ - 2019

The great thing about this campaign was that they utilised social media to appeal to one of their core target demographics – teenagers. The franchise released Halloween themed cans which had QR codes on them for specific spooky Snapchat filters. Purchasers were then encouraged to share their images on social media. This was one of Snapchat’s most successful ever campaigns, and subsequently, they partnered again in 2019 to extend the campaign with the slogan ‘Too Dark?’ encouraging people to access the new filters and post on social media whether the filters were too scary. This campaign was so successful because it played on the idea of #FOMO, encouraging teenagers to join their friends in the purchases for filters, as well as using the most popular social media platform of that target audience.

Bacardi – ‘Dress to be Free’ – 2018

This was an unusual campaign as you wouldn’t necessarily know it was for Halloween until the end of the advert, however, it was clever because it captured the essence of Halloween; to be able to stand out. It emphasises the fun and excitement around the event and the opportunity to express yourself, which many will find appealing as it presents Bacardi as being supportive of diversity.

Now let’s take a look at two campaigns from this year and how they differ:


Hobgoblins – ‘Best sipped in the dark’

The Ale company, best known as the unofficial beer of Halloween, has launched a campaign for a hunt over Halloween weekend around London. They have announced a series of UV glow in the dark, interactive murals for people to find, with a chance to win prizes. In addition, there will be a ‘Hobtoberfest’ streamed across a wide variety of social media sites to entertain consumers with tattoo and art giveaways, a festival home brew challenge, mixologist-led beer cocktail tutorials, and an eating session unlike any other. The company has really thought outside of the box about how they can get their customers involved in Halloween celebrations without holding large gatherings. This way friends can gather in groups of six or less to have a fun weekend, whilst also feeling like they are involved in a bigger community event.

Rubies – ‘Raise your Spirits’

The costume company has needed to think of ways to get customers to purchase outfits when trick or treating and Halloween parties aren’t allowed this year. They created the campaign ‘Raise your Spirits’ to give people ideas of new ways to enjoy Halloween which include making your own spooky sanitiser, community pumpkin trails, and treat delivery shoots. Their website page dedicated to this puts a positive spin on the pandemic, by highlighting the need for community spirit and ways to enjoy Halloween in your own home.

These marketing campaigns were predominately successful because of their creativity and ability to think outside of the box, as well as utilising assets that are best suited to their target audience.

If you would like help with campaign management or any other marketing, please contact Creative Pod.

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