Halloween is the time of year to embrace all things spooky, scary and a little bit tacky. There’s fun all around; from apple bobbing to trick or treat to costume competitions, there’s something for everyone on the dark day of October 31st. Many companies take advantage of this festive fun and create Halloween-centric content, designed to get their followers into the spirit and encourage interactivity with the brand.
So, let’s look at 4 terrifyingly excellent examples of how businesses have incorporated Halloween into their marketing efforts:
Those familiar with Stephen King’s famous 1974 debut novel ‘Carrie’ will instantly recognise this iconic scene. When the movie remake was released in 2013, Tide decided to utilise the hype and create their own version of the story’s prom scene (In this scene, protagonist ‘Carrie’ is drenched in blood as a prank by the other girls at the school), making for a chilling pop culture reference. The Vine ends with the line ‘Stains Better Be Scared’, assuring customers that Tide is the terrifyingly good choice of detergent for Halloween sweet and chocolate stains.
In a prank scary enough to give anyone a heart attack, LG promotes their IPS TV screen, claiming it’s monitors have ‘lifelike colors’. In the video, regular people enter a lift, choose their floor, then, just when the lift starts to move, the lights dim, creaks sound and the monitors on the floor display collapsing floor panels. This effect gives the illusion that the floor is falling down the lift shaft, leaving more than a couple of people terrified. The video the ends with the hair-raising pun ‘So Real it’s Scary’.
The video went viral on YouTube; currently, it sits at just under 26 million views. This campaign is an excellent example of incorporating humor along with impressing viewers of its quality.
Back in 2006 M&M’s came up with the idea to create a piece of art that combines many of the world’s favourite horror movies, then upload it to their website and challenge people to find all 50 movies hidden within it. Whilst they have removed this challenge from their website since, luckily you can still play it on Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine: http://web.archive.org/web/20061004203547/http://us.mms.com/us/dark/ (let us know in the comments below how many you got!). This piece of content was an excellent way of creating buzz for their new dark chocolate range they made a staple in the M&M’s line of products shortly after.
Ford sure knows how to scare the living daylights out of people. In 2014 they released this shocking prank where they set up a fake car wash, had drivers testing Ford cars drive through it and gave them the shock of their life.
Thinking they were driving through a perfectly normal car wash, the drivers were spoken to rudely, then had mops slammed against the windows to make them feel uneasy. Then, in the next section, the lights started to change colour and flicker. Once they started questioning what was going on, men dressed in scary monster masks ran out at the car and banged again the windows, trying to get in. Once they had passed this section, thinking they were in the clear, another one of these dressed up actors suddenly appeared in the boot, giving the driver and passengers a shock to top the experience off.
Whilst Ford doesn’t promote any specific products in this prank, they do show audiences that they do have a sense of humor and do love to embrace holidays.
Hopefully, these examples have given you some ideas as to what content you can create for Halloween. While these 4 were made by large companies, smaller businesses could try something on a smaller scale. Remember, as long as you capture the spooky spirit of Halloween in your content marketing efforts, you don’t need a huge budget. Pranks, pop culture references, and challenges are all excellent ways of getting your audience into the spirit of the year’s scariest holiday.
To learn how it’s not done, take a look at the post 4 Chillingly BAD Examples of Halloween Content Marketing.
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