For Halloween, the Trick Is Making Content a Treat

You might think that candy companies would be the king of online content and social-media engagement when it comes to Halloween, but it turns out that other kinds of companies are also working to align themselves with the sweet and scary holiday.

Want to know who’s hungry for a corner of the content market this Halloween? How about movies and donuts? Look at The Criterion Collection, and at Dunkin’ Donuts, for a start.

Here’s the lowdown on what these two brands are offering, in terms of strategies that we could call lateral to the always-anticipated candy handout.

Things get spooky this October, in your cup and on the screen.

Dunkin’ Donuts: Dress Up Your Cup!

On one front, mobile is the latest thing when it comes to Dunkin’ Donuts’ marketing strategy.

A mummy cup that @stacylkurtz sent in.

The brand has been pushing that platform since at least August 2012, launching a payment app that lets consumers buy coffee and food items via smartphones and other devices at the point of sale.

And when it comes to Halloween, it has taken the social aspects of the technology and applied it to the concept of gift-giving.

You can send a zombified Dunkin’ gift card to a friend, or a jack-o-lantern.

@melissameeow submitted this fantasy-themed pair, ready to dark roast you via dragon.

But the real zinger in the brand’s Halloween customer engagement is a contest built around its cups.

Dress up your coffee container, and tweet the image to #DressedDD, and you could win a $100 gift card.

That’s a lot of joe and crullers.

“We wanted to capture the same spirit of the season that people enjoy in our restaurants in our digital channels as well,” Scott Hudler, vice president of global consumer engagement at Dunkin’ Donuts, recently told Mobile Marketer.

Criterion Collection: Garb Thyself as a Classic

As far as Criterion’s concerned, you don’t have to cut your hair and look sickly — a la Rosemary’s Baby — to win the dress-up-as-a-character contest this Halloween (unless you want to).

The classic and contemporary film series has staked a stack of its seasonally appropriate releases as the prize for the best Criterion-inspired Halloween costume.

Any of its films is fair game.

Think Repulsion. Think Vampyr. Think The Blob. Or go outside the scary-movie box, like Brian Ward. He’s garbed himself as one of the thieves from Terry Gilliam’s Time Bandits.

Once you’ve come up with your costume, all you need to do is convince the Facebook audience that your entry is among the best.

You have until midnight Oct. 31 to submit. The folks at Criterion will pick the shortlist and then its a popular vote on Nov. 1 to determine who wins the spooky movie grab bag. Runners up get a copy of Rosemary’s Baby.

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