Features

How to Data Mash For Some Frighteningly Accurate Results

Written on
Oct 30, 2014 
Author
Katrin Ribant  |

We’re entering what looks to be a promising holiday shopping season this year, and, as you can surely tell by looking in store windows, it’s starting earlier and earlier. Halloween, traditionally having served as a barometer for what might happen over Black Friday and Christmas, is growing in importance and is more of a focus for marketers than ever before. So, too, are cross-channel insights.

Telling the story of marketing performance with data can not only help retailers to optimize their campaigns, but also to inform their marketing strategies.

The total Halloween market has grown from $6.9 billion last year to $7.4 billion this year, with an average spend per person of $77.52.

By combining the most recent National Retail Federation study and insights from Google Trends about people searching for Halloween costumes, a retailer can draw some insights as to where to direct Halloween marketing efforts.

The lion’s share of this spend goes to costumes and decoration, with the current top contenders for All Hallow’s Eve attire in search engines coming in as Frozen Princesses, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Sexy (insert sexy costume idea here).

Location Matters

The data suggests that a search and social campaign aimed at the eastern and southern regions of the U.S. could bring noticeably better results than campaigns focused elsewhere.

According Google Trends data, people living in these regions search for Halloween costumes and related material more than people living in the northern and western parts of the country:

Platforms Matter

Looking deeper into social media statistics, it’s clear that Pinterest is on the rise, particularly among women. Twice as many women as men are looking for Halloween costumes on Pinterest. A strategy that targets women with specific content (ads or in-stream) on Pinterest and suggests interesting costume ideas would likely provide a strong bang for the buck. That’s much less true on Facebook, where male searchers outnumber females:

Holiday Marketing is Starting Earlier and Earlier

Three out of four people start shopping for Halloween items before mid-October; the research phase is long. Being there for most of the time that people are comparing and looking for ideas is key to remaining in the last-minute decision set.

Viewed separately, each of these data points is certainly useful. But when put together, they become much more powerful and much more actionable. Starting your campaign earlier, and targeting women who live in southern and eastern parts of the USA on Pinterest makes for much more promising results than just using one point alone.





After more than eight years at Havas Digital, Katrin Ribant left to cofound Datorama, for which she serves as chief solutions officer. Using data to answer real-world questions, and building technology that helps more people solve more unknowns, is what makes her tick.

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