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Cashing in on Halloween Spending

-- 2011-09-19 5:00 am --

The National Retail Foundation conducted a survey last year that found Americans planned to spend almost $6 billion on Halloween. Does your small business have a plan to capture some of that revenue? You may think it is early to be talking about trick-or-treat with the kids barely back in school. However, you should order printed supplies or costumes now if you want to cash in on Halloween spending.

Halloween Costumes
Halloween costumes are big business, with 40% of adults surveyed planning to dress up. If you want your employees to wear costumes, they will need plenty of notice so they have time to create and purchase their disguises.

If you sell costumes, look to the year's hit movies and television shows to see what will be most popular. Of course, there are standards (vampires and witches) that never go out of style and will sell to last minute shoppers.

Halloween Decor
More and more Americans are celebrating the holiday with parties, and these celebrations have helped drive up Halloween spending. If your business sells hospitality items, food or drink, now is a great time to start planning displays or webpages that feature these items with a holiday theme. You can even promote glassware and punch bowls to be used throughout the holiday season.

Even if your business is not a retail store, Halloween themed decorations encourage festive feelings in your clients and employees. Consider decorating your business or website to encourage holiday spending in visitors.

Trick or Treat
There are two ways to cash in on trick or treat for your business.

1. If you have a bricks and mortar business, consider inviting trick-or-treaters to visit your location. If you can offer a safe, well-lit option, you will have a moment to talk to parents while tempting the kids with treats. If you are located in a plaza or business park, talk to other businesses and see if you can arrange a secure "neighborhood" for the kids that gives everyone a chance to promote their goods and services.

2. Include a business card or flyer with the goodies you hand out from your home. This will get your promotion into the homes of your neighbors. Consider a coupon or discount that only applies to your neighbors to foster goodwill and get people in your town talking about your business.

Printed goods
If you will be using Halloween-themed flyers or coupons in your holiday promotion, you should order them well in advance so you have everything on hand in time. Halloween items will look dated and serve no purpose on November 1, so plan to begin circulating printed goods early in October so you run through all your stock.

Think about a bounce back offer that brings customers back for Thanksgiving and Christmas promotions as well. The best Halloween events set in motion a chain of events that keep your brand foremost in the customers' minds right through the first of the year.

Holidays encourage spending in consumers, and you should start now to be sure you should have a plan in place to cash in on Halloween spending.