5 Marketing Ideas to Scare Up Your Spooky Season
Grab a glass of hot apple cider, gas up the hayride tractor, and start working on your costume because that oh so spooky time of year is almost upon us again.
As with any holiday season, planning ahead and getting your pumpkins in a row is the best way to be successful. And it’s especially important in 2022:
Online searches for fall vacations are up 40% from last year (Expedia).
Whether you run a haunted house, ghost tour, or pumpkin farm and corn maze — we have a slew of features and tips below to scare up bookings and keep your customers coming back for more.
1. Plan Petrifying Promotions
Everyone loves a discount (Halloween costumes can sure get pricey!). One of the best ways to promote your fall activities is to offer discounts on select tours during the month of October, or any other time period that best lines up with your fall season.
For best results, keep these tips in mind.
- Have fun with your online discount code by using words like SPOOKTOBER, TRICKORTREAT, etc.
- Follow FareHarbor’s campaign and promo code best practices and remember, our Support team has your back 24/7 on seasonal updates like this.
- Spread the word on social media with spooky imagery and copy to match.
Pro Tip: For seasonal attractions like haunted houses and corn mazes that only run for a select time period, consider offering a presale discount to reward early bookers and generate buzz sooner.
2. Craft Spine-Chilling Social Campaigns
Spooky season offers so many opportunities for social posts! Whether you’re sharing a picture of the gorgeous fall foliage at your location or your whole team dressed in their best costumes, you should plan to take advantage of this time of year.
Halloween is the perfect time to ask for user-generated content or run a contest on social media. Ask people to post pictures of their Halloween costumes, tell their scariest story, or share a real-life ghost encounter they’ve experienced.
Come up with a good prize for the winner as well as how you’re going to share the entries. This is a great way to get a lot of good content that you can use for spooky seasons to come.
3. Add the Fear (or Fall) Factor to Your Activities
If you already offer ghost tours, you’re all set here. But for operators whose tours are less than spooky, see what terrifying twists you can spin up for your activities. Here are a few ideas to get you started.
- Have your guides tell ghost or local true crime stories to your guests.
- Serve holiday-themed treats like pumpkin spiced coffee or caramel apples.
- Ask guests to come in costume for a bonus reward.
- Spruce up your check-in location with Halloween or fall-themed decorations.
4. Throw an Eerie Event or Fall Festival
Whether you’ve been hosting a masquerade ball for years or want to run your first fall festival, FareHarbor has the tools and tips you need to make your event scarily successful.
To get you started, it’s important to begin marketing your activities early. Even if your fall festival is already the talk of the town, you want to encourage people to book early and attract the attention of out-of-towners. To really make your event stand out online, be sure to brush up on local SEO to discover some strategies you can implement online.
Be active on social media by sharing photos, videos, sneak peeks, and seasonal attractions like a corn maze or pumpkin patch.
Finally, remember that the spooky season isn’t all about Halloween! You can plan fun themed activities for Day of the Dead, Labor Day, Thanksgiving weekend, and even Friday the 13th (depending on when it falls in a given year).
For more tips, check out our festival and event planning guide.
5. Don’t Let Activity Logistics Come Back to Haunt You
You’ve done so much prep work, but when it’s actually time to get down to carving pumpkins, will your activity go off without a hitch? Use these key FareHarbor features to ensure your customers are worried about the chainsaw you’re chasing them with, not your check-in process. You can include some of these elements in your marketing efforts ahead of time, like sharing with customers that they can pay using Tap to Pay on iPhone.
- Use QR code scanning to check guests in from the FareHarbor app. Offline mode is available as well! Even if you have a bad internet connection, you can still check guests in.
- Increase bookings with more payment options for customers. These include Apple and Google Pay as well as Tap to Pay on iPhone.
- Fully customize your booking form for all your seasonal needs. For example, use custom fields to collect essential information from customers, such as whether they meet the age requirement for your super scary, adults-only ghost tour. You can also add custom fields for extra purchases like drink add-ons, merchandise, and more.
- Use custom field add-ons to upsell your additional attractions. Now, when a customer books your haunted house tour, they can add on a hayride or corn maze ticket right in the same booking process.
Enjoy the Magic of Spooky Season
Once you’ve planned out your activities, run your social media campaign, and set everything up on your FareHarbor Dashboard, there’s no need to dread the denizens of the night descending onto your destination.
Keep your social media feed flowing with videos and pictures from your attractions and don’t forget to save all the best pictures to use again next year! And of course, scare ’em good for us!