Top 5 Halloween Marketing Campaigns of 2015
Halloween is my favourite holiday of all time. I love the colours, I love the scary movies (well some of them) and I love fancy dress. Now I’m combining Halloween with my other favourite thing ever, marketing (woo!) I want to take a look at some of the brands who made (in my opinion) the best uses of Halloween in their marketing campaigns in 2015, and see what pearls of wisdom we can take from them.
Innocent – First stop, Innocent. Always my favourite social media account to check up on every now and then for inspiration and big laughs. Innocent’s social media team have been genuinely slaying (yay, halloween puns) their social media for such a long time now. Surprise, surprise Halloween 2015 was no different. Innocent played it simple with a few halloween “dad” jokes, a continuation of their amazing 4th floor stapler joke (which if you haven’t checked out, you really should) and a really funny, sarcastic flow chart advising you how to dress up for halloween. Each of these posts received tonnes of engagement, shares and likes. The message we learn from innocent is that simple campaigns with seemingly spontaneous and fun content are always winners.
Tesco – Onto something a little more expensive and thought out. Tesco launched their Spookermarket campaign. Created by BBH London, the campaign was made up of an amusing 90-second hidden-camera video, shot in one of the chain’s stores. Unsuspecting shoppers are treated to gruesome butchers jumping out from behind the counter, shopping trolleys that move on their own, and severed hands in the frozen food aisle. Although totally brilliant, this passed me by until later research though, so its campaign, although brilliant, wasn’t reaching as wide an audience as its expense deserved. Therefore from Tesco we can learn again that videos, although taking extensive planning, editing and money, still make for brilliant content. The video got over 2 million hits on Youtube, which is pretty impressive.
Starbucks – Next, we’re going to talk about Starbucks Pumpkinheads campaign. The campaign plays on the popularity of Starbucks’ Pumpkin Spiced Latte’s and playfully mocks those who are real PSL lovers, nicknaming them #pumpkinheads. Being able to poke fun at your own brand will always go down well with followers. Also Starbucks created a one week only Vampire Frappucino (strawberry mocha), which came up on my instagram as a promoted post. It looked delicious and I instantly wanted one. These posts got lots of engagement and generated increase in sales. From Starbucks we learn that it’s okay (in fact it’s brilliant) to poke fun at your own brand, and that limited edition products are still king in the holidays campaign front a la red cups for christmas style.
Target – Although an American brand and not a brand I’m familiar with, I was so impressed when I read about this campaign that I had to include it. Target rolled out Treatster, or what it calls “the first social network designed exclusively to help parents map out the ‘must-visit’ houses on each block for their trick-or-treaters.” Treatster gathers information from parents, who up-vote the best trick-or-treating spots by tagging their locations as a “Treat” on their maps. The more “Treats” a location has, the larger its pumpkin will appear, helping trick-or-treaters get the most out of halloween, and preventing those heartbreaking no answer moments. Adorable. From Target then we learn that apps are key, and being helpful in a really non commercial sense can ultimately significantly help your image.
Candy Kittens – What can I say… I’m a big Made in Chelsea fan (It’s my biggest weakness.) But Candy Kittens, the gourmet sweet brand run by McVities heir Jamie Laing, unveiled their ‘Dead Good’ Halloween vending machine in Shoreditch, London during the run up to Halloween. It resulted in a choir of screams from unassuming passers-by who were tempted by the free sweets, but when they went to grab them, had their hand grabbed in return. Jamie Laing getting involved with the fun, snapchatting the results and the Daily Mail coverage of the vending machine created a strong social media presence for the brand during the week. Candy Kittens teaches us that gimmicks can be fun and that celebrities still hold a really central presence in drawing attention to and endorsing brands.
So there you have it, my favourite uses of Halloween in marketing over the past week. I hope you enjoyed this post and gained some useful tips for how best to plan your next Halloween campaign.