6 Playfully Spooky Marketing Campaigns Just in Time for Halloween

    by Corey Eridon

    Date

    October 31, 2012 at 9:00 AM

    halloween marketing campaignsintroductory3

    Happy Halloween, everyone! Some people love being scared, some people hate it, some people (like yours truly) hate it so much they love it.

    So it's no wonder that lots of brands get into the Halloween spirit every year, finding ways to celebrate this fun and festive holiday with some tricks ... and some treats. Mostly tricks, though.

    Now I'm going to be honest with you. I wrote this post yesterday -- on Allll Hallllowwsss Evvveeee (read with ghostly tone) -- so there's a really great chance some of you business owners and marketers will come up with hilarious Halloween pranks to pull today. My apologies in advance for not showcasing your shenanigans. BUT! If you do find a way to celebrate this most ghostly of days in your marketing, please leave a link to your tricks and treats in the comments so we can all enjoy!

    1) Sprint LG: So Real It's Scary

    This Sprint video went viral a few weeks ago, kicking off way before most people started their Halloween pranks. The trick had two goals in mind -- to show how incredibly lifelike images come across on their IPS monitors (nice marketing tie-in, eh?), and to scare the living bageezis out of everyone taking the elevator that day. Take a look.

    2) Snickers' Horseless Headsman

    This commercial plays off of Snickers' popular, long-running, "You're not you when you're hungry" campaign, combined with the lore of the Headless Horseman. Only it's ... the Horseless Headsman. And totally ridiculous, in a great way. Take a look.

    I hope you enjoyed the 'Headless Horse ... Man' at the end as much as I did.

    3) Little Caesars' Forbidden Pizza Website

    Little Caesars does that marketing thing where you tell people they can't have your product. So they, of course, immediately want it. Visit their website, forbiddenpizzawebsite.com, and go through the process for yourself ... or read below the screenshot of their website for the details on what they do! (That's your official spoiler alert, folks.)


    little caesars campaign resized 600

    When you land on the site, a spooky voice booms, "Why have you come here? This is your final warning. Don't type your address below." If you click in the box to type your address -- like we all will -- the voice says, "No. No NO NO! Don't type your address!"

    The next screen after you submit your address? The voice comes back, saying, "Now you've done it. Your house is haunted." Then, they actually pull up a map of your house on Google Maps, and show little cartoon ghosts haunting it with hilarious "ooooOOOOOHs" and eerie music!

    When you click the button "Find Out How to Unhaunt" that will help you unhaunt your house, you're taken to a Google Map of driving directions to your nearest Little Caesars location. When you click "Unhaunt," the ghosts disperse with a high-pitched and adorable "YAY!!!" Of course, the final screen is a prompt to share this site on Twitter and Facebook, and a short video that explains the campaign.

    4) Oriental Trading Company's Monster ... Rubber Duckies?

    You better believe the party supply company got into the Halloween spirit. They did something that's, frankly, kind of confusing. But also adorable. And that's what makes it hilarious. Rubber duckies ... that are zombies? Alright, I'll bite. (Har har.)

    When you go to the Oriental Trading Facebook Page, you'll notice they've created a game that lets you unleash your inner monster duck. Finally.

    inner monster resized 600

    You'll be prompted to answer five questions to determine who your inner monster duck really is. Questions like ...

    zombie quiz resized 600

    ... I'll take a heaping helping of braaaains, thank you. And then, once you've answered the five questions, you're matched up with one of ten inner monster duck personalities. I was pleased to find that I'm a dead zombie duck, sporting a rather fashionable black tank top. When you get here, you can print your certificate, share on social media, or go on to purchase a your monster duck figurine on the Oriental Trading Company website.

    otc resized 600

    The best part about this? It's Halloween-themed social media fun the kids can enjoy, too. Plus, a little zombie rubber ducky is only a few bucks, so it's not a bank-breaker for social media fans who might be pretty low-commitment as leads or customers.

    5) REI Zombie Survival Guide

    Looks like lots of companies are getting in on the zombie action. Outdoor sporting goods company REI released a fantastic infographic giving advice for all of us that need help this Halloween fending off the zombies. A common problem, to be sure.

    You can see the entire infographic here, but here's a snippet to whet your appetite.

    zombie infographic resized 600

    It's all about the follow through.

    6) Chipotle's Boorito

    Chipotle released a funny video promoting their Halloween burrito discount -- come into Chipotle after 4 p.m. on Halloween in costume, and get a $2 burrito. But that's not all. Take a look at the video (or just read on after if you don't have a couple minutes to watch right now) to see how Chipotle makes this Halloween video promotion even better.

    They've turned this promotion into cause marketing, too! If you watched the video, you'll notice the entire theme is this trick-or-treating Frankenstein talking about Halloween as a do-good holiday. And the call-to-action at the end of the video? Come in for that $2 burrito and the proceeds, up to $1 million worth, will benefit the Chipotle Cultivate foundation. Pretty cool that they're encouraging people to, as their tagline puts it, "Do some good this Halloween."

    What other scary, funny, or creative Halloween-themed marketing campaigns have you seen this season?

    Image credit: The Itsy Bitsy Spider (I mean ... what did you expect?)

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