Five Halloween tips for advertisers

By ‎@__emilyparker‎
Thursday, 23 October 2014

The coming week is a great time for brands – even those not touting candy or cat ears – to get into the Halloween spirit and connect with consumers on Twitter.

According to the National Retail Federation (NRF), Americans will spend more than $7 billion on Halloween this year, buying everything from costumes inspired by “Frozen” and “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” to yard decor to bags of candy.

Twitter is a favorite haunt of these Halloween enthusiasts: Our research shows that last October, mentions of “Halloween” on the platform exceeded 19M globally. This October, mentions of “Halloween” have already reached 8M.

How can brands effectively join the Halloween conversation? Here are five tips illustrated with real-time examples.

1. Start now.
It’s not too late for advertisers to influence Halloween shoppers. The NRF research indicates that nearly 25% of Internet users say they wait until the last two weeks of October to decide on a costume and purchase candy. And this year, they’ll spend an average of $77.52 on candy, decor and costumes (compared to $75.03 in 2013).

2. Find ways to connect your brand to the holiday.
Halloween isn’t just for costume sellers and candy brands. Consider how your product might relate to the holiday, and use Twitter Ads to remind users why they’ll need it. Here’s a Promoted Video example from @Crest:

3. Use Tweets to drive traffic.
Halloween lands on a Friday this year, which, as Forbes points out, is a boon for retailers and restaurants. Advertisers can boost brick-and-mortar traffic by offering special Halloween deals.

This is the fourth year that @ChipotleTweets will celebrate Halloween with #Boorito, a fundraiser to benefit its Cultivate Foundation. Customers who go to a Chipotle dressed in costume after 5pm next Friday can purchase a burrito for $3.

@SixFlags is using a Promoted Tweet with multiple images to draw visitors to #FrightFest, an annual event that takes place at 15 of its theme parks. 

4. Provide how-to’s, recipes, tips and advice.
Twitter users love it when advertisers offer helpful content that enriches their experience. Here, @Butterfinger provides a Halloween-inspired recipe.

And @CapitalOne is sharing a Vine to show users how to make their jack-o’-lanterns last:

5. Encourage users to share content.
Twitter is a two-way channel. Engage users by asking for their opinions, advice or Halloween photos. This year, Beggin’ Strips (@Beggin) is asking people to submit photos of their dogs in costume using the hashtag #Howloween. For every photo they receive, @Beggin will donate a bag of treats to an animal shelter.