As families rethink Halloween traditions, companies that typically rely on Halloween to sell have mixed up to suit.
This is what Halloween will look like this year.
To increase sales and arouse customer interest, This season’s Halloween preps include using fewer treats on Halloween-specific packaging, focusing on family-sized packages, and lengthening the shopping season.
Halloween celebrations are unpredictable this year, but candy companies should be optimistic nonetheless, David Steinberg, co-founder and CEO of Zeta Global, a data-driven marketing technology company, told CNN Business. He added that consumers will continue to look for candy for reasons that don̵
The seasonal chain Spirit Halloween, known for its extensive costume collection, is prepared for a very unusual Halloween. The company is changing its strategy during the pandemic, getting creative by offering new ways to party and offering Instacart contactless delivery for Halloween costume shopping.
“We’re seeing a lot of customer foot traffic and expect sales to be at last year’s level,” Erin Springer, Spirit Halloween’s senior public relations and media manager, told CNN Business.
And costume sales are still rising, Steinberg said, even if it may be unsafe to partake in traditional trick or treating. “Children are still looking forward to Halloween. The parents do not want to disappoint them – especially after a tough school year from home,” said Steinberg. “Whether or not they do trick or treat, there is still a reason for them to dress up as their favorite character.”
Socially distant trick or treating
Last month, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued Halloween Safety Guidelines calling traditional trick or treating a “high-risk activity”. As an alternative, the CDC suggested “One-Way-Trick-or-Treating”, in which individually wrapped goodie bags are given to neighbors and friends.
Spirit Halloween recommended contactless trick-or-treating (though they don’t sell candy), socially distant costume parades, cemetery scavenger hunts, and virtual ghost storytelling.
To shop or not to shop
In preparation for Halloween, Lowe’s is launching roadside trick-or-treating events before the holiday, giving customers free candy and pumpkins. Lowe’s is likely using the event as an opportunity to attract customers to their stores. The initiative enables customers to participate in the roadside pick-up for items they have ordered in-store while also participating in the roadside trick-or-treating.
Party City has also changed its strategy. “Party City essentially wrote the game book about virtual celebrations at home and in the drive-by,” Brad Weston, the company’s CEO, told CNN Business, adding that the company offers virtual party kits, step-by-step instructions and Checklists designed to make this easier Plan Halloween celebrations during the pandemic.
However, the party supplier is still fighting. In 2019, the company had 275 Halloween pop-up stores across the country, and this year the company will only have 25 Halloween pop-up stores in the U.S.
Spirit Halloween, which has become an integral part of Halloween for many, opened 1,360 locations across the country last year, increasing that number to 1,400 this year.