In the world of marketing, holidays represent a golden opportunity, a unique chance for companies to connect with their customers, creating engaging and memorable experiences for the audience. In this article, we will explore some of the most spectacular and frightening marketing campaigns created for Halloween, demonstrating how creativity and innovation can illuminate the holidays and leave an indelible mark in the minds of consumers.
The autumn season is by itself one of the most captivating times of the year: nature’s colours change, giving way to warmer and more embracing tones, temperatures become milder compared to the summer heat and there are numerous celebrations that bring with them traditions, costumes and characteristic foods.
Among these, the most evocative is undoubtedly Halloween, a holiday primarily celebrated in Anglo-Saxon countries but in recent years has been gaining popularity in the rest of the world.
This growing passion for pumpkins and ghosts has certainly not gone unnoticed by the marketing departments of many businesses around the world, which have showcased their talent in creating spectacular campaigns aimed at capturing the consumers’ imagination.
Today, we will tell you about the most interesting advertising campaigns of this Halloween 2023.
Table of contents
Burger King – The Call
The fast-food giant, Burger King, has decided to celebrate Halloween with the Ghost Pepper Whopper burger and Ghost Pepper Chicken Fries, accompanied by a horror short film.
The video is designed as a parody of classic horror scenes: a woman watches TV alone in the middle of the night when the phone rings, and the receiver emits a demonic voice. The frightened young woman rushes to her car, and after a short drive, she discovers the burger and fries in their horror-themed attire on the back seat.
The director of ‘The Call’, Alfonso Gomez-Rejon, also chose to include references to famous horror movies in the short film: the location is the same as in ‘Jeepers Creepers’ and the car appeared in ‘Buffy the Vampire Slayer‘.
Finally, the ‘Whopper Whopper’ jingle has been modified and made more spectral for the occasion.
Fanta – Trick or Treat?
This autumn, Fanta has relaunched the ‘Trick or Treat?’ contest for the Italian audience, originally introduced in 2021. The objective of this Halloween campaign, which leverages the brand’s digital channels, is to engage consumers in a creative and fun manner.
To participate in the contest, one needs to purchase one of the products participating in the initiative (such as Fanta Orange or Fanta No Added Sugar), scan the QR code on the product’s packaging, download the official Coca-Cola app and enter the code found on the back of the label. Winners will receive one of the prizes, while the less fortunate will experience a digital trick.
To promote the initiative, Fanta has decided to create a dedicated commercial: customers of a store become victims of “spine-tingling” pranks, in line with Halloween tradition.
Snapchat – Phantom House
Even more interactive is the Halloween campaign conceived by Snapchat, which uses artificial intelligence to immerse users in ‘first-person’ scary experiences.
The project is inspired by the concept of escape rooms, where a group of influencers is trapped in a haunted house and must solve a series of puzzles with the help of the viewers to escape from it. Users can actively participate in the adventure by using augmented reality filters and generative AI selfies.
To create Phantom House, Snapchat combines film production, interactive gameplay and artificial intelligence to engage and pique the interest of users and advertisers, involving them in a different and innovative advertising mode.
Bacardi – Spectral Tutorials
Bacardi is not new in using Halloween to relaunch its products.
This year the famous brand created a multichannel communication campaign that comprehends commercials, music playlists and personalised digital lens.
Were created two short tutorials called “Blood Moon” and “The Zombie” with the direction of Emily Elizabeth Thompson. These tapes show customers how to create two new cocktails made with Bacardi that celebrate classic horror movies such as “Poltergeist” and “The Shining”.
Spotify and snapchat have also been used in the marketing strategy. The first one to publish a playlist that bring customers into the spectral holyday atmosphere and the second through the creation of a lens that allows users to modify their face with a cocktail inspired makeup.
All that is supported by the sale of phosphorescent bottles, with the iconic Bacardi bath accompanied by a few luminescent friends, a limited-edition collection object designed to be used as a decoration as well as to realise cocktails.
Heinz – Vampire Store
To celebrate Halloween Heinz launched the new Black Garlic Mayo: a combination of its vegan mayonnaise enriched with black garlic.
What a better way to publicise this new product that open a pop-up store in Transylvania?
The special mausoleum-shaped store is collocated in the Boldu-Cretulasca forest, where the count Dracula is supposed to be beheaded and will be open only for a day, from the midnight of the 31st of October.
The initiative is supported by a series of commercials, by PR digital activities in a few countries and, in the city of London, by a DOOH anamorphic installation that allows passers to interact with it trying to obtain a bottle of limited-edition mayonnaise.
All of it to publicise a mayonnaise “so good even vampires can’t resist”.
The campaigns that we present you today bring with them a unique and engaging atmosphere, demonstrating how Halloween is begun a celebration of imagination and wit.
While we are preparing for the spookiest night of the year, these campaigns inspire us to celebrate Halloween in more creative and engaging ways, toward a spectral fun.
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