In the world of social media, every holiday presents a special marketing opportunity – a special theme used to push or launch a product or service, a chance to offer exclusive content, another shot at goosing the conversation between customer and company.
Okay, so Halloween isn’t an official holiday, unless you manage a Party City; then it turns into an early Christmas. But it is an unofficial celebration of pop culture and memories of our youth, along with our innate desire to be taken to the brink of fear and then pulled safely back (like riding your favorite theme-park roller coaster, or attending the latest “Paranormal Activity” movie.)
More brands are taking to social media to make those scary connections, and some are doing it better than others. Audi makes smart use of the #halloween Twitter hashtag, and the social network’s Promoted Tweets feature, to push its thermal imaging cameras in its newer models:
On Facebook, the hit AMC horror series The Walking Dead offers up a bloody bucketful of behind-the-scenes material and extra content on its FB fan page; a must-click for fans of a genre show that does the best job yet of mixing gore and terrors with solid character development. And its production and makeup geniuses have some helpful hints for those who still don’t have any costume ideas for All Hallow’s Eve:
The scariest thing I’ve seen lately via social media, however, started catching some viral buzz about a week ago. It’s the Take This Lollipop Facebook app, an extraordinarily creepy way to make a point about privacy. Giving the app access to your Facebook account presents you with a two-minute horror movie where you and your friends are the stars; your status updates, photos and other content appear on the computer screen in the basement of a sweaty-looking guy in a wife-beater T-shirt – he’s right out of Central Casting for the role of Internet Stalker. He mutters, screams and types away as he looks in on your life, digs up your address on Google Maps, and then gets into a car and drives off – presumably to meet you face to face.
Frightening to be sure, but as Joe Berkowitzaptly points out in a Fast Company article Take This Lollipop also may have unwittingly put a spotlight on the technology that enables this kind of instant interactivity, and how it might be used in more productive, business-friendly ways other than scaring people.
Have you seen any recent clever tie-ins of Halloween and social media marketing? If so, please share with us in our Comments section below, and check out some advice and best practices from the week:
There’s Always Room For Jello…Brains?
Yes, another Halloween-related marketing campaign, this one from Kraft Foods. But as reported by Karlene Lukovitz of MediaPost Marketing Daily, Kraft’s efforts aren’t so much about a simple theme tie-in as they are about the company’s clever mix of all its social media and web platforms – including mobile – and its multiple family-friendly brands.
Content Don’t Mean A Thing If It Ain’t Got Worth Sharing
Marcus Taylor of SEOptimize writes at Logic + Emotion about the kinds of content that gets passed along by customers and comes up with his own grading scale for determining how shareworthy a blog post or social media status update can be.
That’s all for this week. Have a great weekend; here’s hoping your Halloween scares are all of the “it’s-only-a-movie” kind, and watch out for those trick-or-treatin’ kiddos on Monday night!