halloween campaigns

5 Halloween Campaigns for Digital Savvy Generations

Halloween is the perfect time of year to stand out from the crowd. We selected five brands that executed awesome Halloween campaigns for digital-savvy Gen Z and Millenials. Everyone is on the lookout and drawing inspiration from social media for the best costume, fun activities, and sweet treats. The spookier the better!

Gen Z and Millenials are unique groups of people. Their interests and reasons for buying or consuming are different than what marketers are used to.

Therefore, it’s important for a brand to tailor its marketing to fit what appeals to them and Halloween is no exception.

Since they were born into a world riddled with instant satisfaction, they have shorter attention spans than previous generations. Brands need to provide this audience with quick, to the point advertisements or campaigns that capture the audience’s attention.

1. Zombie Skittles

Skittles has given their usual candies a dark twist. Zombie Skittles are a specially curated line of Skittles candy for Halloween. Each package has a mix of sweet, fruity flavors and surprise rotten zombie flavors. It sounds gross to us, but people are eating this up.

To promote this, Skittles created a hashtag asking influencers and social media users to share videos of themselves and their friends trying Zombie Skittles. When users post their videos with #daretherainbow and tag @skittles, they enter to win a variety of Skittles candies.

Generally, Gen Z and Millennials have responded positively to the use of influencer marketing. Influencers offer opinions, reviews, and judgements and audiences trust them because they are more relatable than a big brand. Influencers offer brands a chance at authenticity with their (sometimes) unbiased opinions and connection with their viewers. Audiences look to influencers for insight on new social media trends, recommendations, and advice.

The social media world has also precipitated a wave of brand engagement in the form of hashtag challenges. Remember when your friends nominated you to dump a bucket of ice water over your head? The #ALSicebucketchallenge may have seemed silly, but it generated almost $100 million in donations and millions of videos. Influencers play a massive role in this, boosting challenges visibility and encouraging their audiences to participate with their own user-generated content, creating viral sensations.

Skittles’ rotten zombie product uses influencer promoted challenges to interact with Gen Z and Millenials in a creative and fun way. This campaign encourages genuine enjoyment and naturally calls for a viral challenge.


2. BooHoo’s Memes

Additionally, another great way to engage Gen Z is through memes. Memes have become a second language for Gen Z. They are a way to communicate, emote, relate, and most importantly, laugh. Memes create a sense of community through their shareability and connectivity. They call everyone out on the dumb things they do and show people that they aren’t the only ones who do it.

Brands who are able to speak with memes reach a new level of communication and understanding from their audience. Memes also have the distinct advantage of being extremely shareable and engaging. For example, the clothing line Boohoo shared memes like these on their Facebook page. Their usual Facebook posts typically get under 50 Facebook interactions. However, memes that they post receive hundreds of likes and hundreds of comments. These memes have nothing to do with their products, but people relate and continue to interact with the brand and share content posted under its name.

Memes are a great way to incorporate mass impressions into a brand’s marketing plan.


3. KFC’s Colonel Sanders Costume

Next on our list, Kentucky Fried Chicken paired with Spirit Halloween for a hilarious offering. Together, they’re giving their customers what they didn’t know they needed: a Colonel Sanders costume.

Brand partnerships enable both brands to reach each other’s audience. This allows for greater reach and a higher amount of social media impressions.

Plus, this costume is extremely Instagram worthy. Colonel Sanders is a character that universally recognizable across generations, so all of your Instagram followers and Facebook friends will be reacting to your posts. Yep, even Grandma.

Brand activations such as these leverage the participatory nature of younger generations. Being constantly bombarded with ads has led them to ask for more from brands than just sponsored posts and billboards. Consumers want to interact and engage with companies and this costume is the perfect way to do just that.


4. Budweiser Drink Wiser

This Halloween, Budweiser expanded upon their previous Drink Wiser Campaign. With the tagline “Don’t let Halloween Haunt you Forever,” the company is promoting responsible drinking. To make their case a little more impactful, they recreated hilarious mugshots from people arrested for public intoxication on Halloween.

This campaign reaches out to the socially responsible attributes shared by Millennials and older members of Gen Z, and it attempts to grab their attention with humor. The campaign also encourages the audience to follow their Twitter, where they share reminders to “hydrate between Buds.”


5. Lush Cosmetics Halloween Line

Lastly, Lush is a cosmetics company that sells cosmetics that contain natural, vegan ingredients. Their products are also known for being especially “insta-worthy” with their bright colors, unique packing (or lack thereof), and delightful smells. In the social media sphere, they have become well known for their themed bath bombs, shower jellies, and other creative products.

Gen Z and Millenials are more environmentally conscious than their predecessors and show their support for environmentally sustainable brands to satisfy their green shopping needs. Even further, across social media, influencers are going vegan, only supporting cruelty-free brands, and seeking out ethically sourced ingredients. Lush utilizes these influencers to market their products in a way that Gen Z and Millennials appreciate.

Lush’s Halloween 2019 collection features spooky ghosts and monsters, glow in the dark products, festive pumpkin smells, and even shower slime. Naturally, when Lush released the collection, influencers were quick to share their reaction videos and photos.


Planning for Next Year

From memes to iconic costumes, Gen Z and Millennials require some creative tactics to reach them. New social media trends are popping up constantly. Pay attention to what Gen Z and Millenials are responding to, and leverage those trends for your campaign. Each year, brands will have to get bolder with their campaigns, so start planning for next year’s Halloween!