Walking to Net Sixty Six HQ this week, we have noticed some unusual things in Manchester City Centre. The traditional shop displays have been replaced with witches, skeletons and other spooky items. Pumpkins have been spotted scattered randomly in several trees. Even the infamous Manchester Town Hall clock and building have been turned into a slimy green colour. All of these signs can only mean one thing – the return of Halloween!
Most recently, the UK has seen a significant increase in this traditional occasion. Originating from an ancient, pre-Christian Celtic festival of Samhain, Halloween is celebrated on 31st October. According to Google Trends, UK Search interest in Halloween has nearly doubled over the last ten years. Top UK questions being asked around Halloween include ‘How did Halloween start?’ and ‘Why is Halloween celebrated?’
Today, Halloween is searched around the globe but retains the most interest in the United States, where, according to an article published on the guardian.com more than 70% of citizens participate, spending a whopping $9.1 billion dollars on sweets and costumes. Back here in the UK, it has become a benign event where children can dress up in fancy dress outfits and collect sweets and chocolates from their neighbours and local communities.
As the clocks go back an hour and summer season gives way to the autumn, we tend to look forward to Halloween as an occasion to celebrate. Social Media is also an influencing factor which has made Halloween more fashionable. Images of unusual fancy dress costumes or people showing off their pumpkin carving skills can be seen on Instagram and Facebook. Twitter features trending hashtags such as #HappyHalloween and clever puns.
As well as being a huge celebration for families, Halloween is also an excellent opportunity for businesses to boost their brand awareness through Social Media, similar to Christmas, Easter and other seasonal events or occasions. No matter how much involved in Halloween you may be this year – whether you are actively ‘trick or treating,’ staying in your home, dishing out the sweets or shutting the curtains, switching off the lights and pretending you’re not in, all of us at Net Sixty Six (or should that read Net Six Six Six today) wish you a very Happy Halloween!