Email marketing

So good it’s spooky: 7 bewitching Halloween email marketing ideas

Emily Riedy, September 17th 2021
man in an apron standing in a kitchen

Do you know what one of the most enchanting things about Halloween is? The opportunity to be anyone, or anything, you can dream up—you just need the right attire.

Creating a Halloween email is much like conjuring up a spectacular costume: It takes a bunch of brainstorming, a dash of artistry, and a sprinkle of guts to produce an email marketing campaign that’s hauntingly click-worthy.

Plus, when brewed successfully, it can help you ensnare new customers and spellbind your existing ones as you prepare to head into the busiest time of the retail year.

7 tried-and-true Halloween email marketing ideas

Regardless of how your audience intends to spend this Halloween, there are ways your email marketing campaigns can be out-of-this-world relatable and applicable to their plans—you just need to put together the magic words.

These 7 Halloween email ideas (plus examples) can show you where to start.

1. Play with the spooky colors of the season

Even if your products don’t directly relate to Halloween, it doesn’t mean you have to sit on the Halloween marketing sidelines. Find inspiration from the quintessential colors of the festivities and share Halloween messages that visually engage your subscribers.

Brand example: BABOON TO THE MOON’s Halloween email showcases their bright orange travel bag product line against a black background. They kept their call-to-action (CTA) simple, encouraging subscribers to “shop orange things.” With the humorously added touch of the witch’s hat, BABOON TO THE MOON visually evoked the Halloween spirit, while keeping the copy of the email short and sweet.

a witch hat on an orange bag

2. Put people first and products second in your Halloween emails

Seasonal events open the door for you to build relationships with your brand’s community because they create a shared experience you can use to relate to your audience. You build these relationships, similar to the ones you have with close friends and family members, through conversations—not just sales (although an enticing promotion never hurts).

Simply put, bring your brand to life by highlighting the people behind it and use Halloween as your bridge of communication to create personal connections.

Brand example: Luxury pajama brand Printfresh shared what their team’s cozy, in-home Halloween evenings entail, and the movie favorites each person paired with their plans.

Normally, you might not think Halloween and a brand that sells pajamas are a match made in heaven. But because Printfresh focuses on their staff’s spine-chilling film recs, rather than the product, they make it work.

girl in pjs with a screen behind her
girls in fall pijamas

3. Explain the magical properties of your products

Do you sell hand-stitched throw blankets? Or clothes made from the softest, most sustainably grown organic cotton known to man? Are your beauty products filled with clean, all natural elixirs that’ll get rid of even the deepest of crow’s feet?

Your Halloween email campaigns can serve as the perfect means to share the unique qualities of your products—the things that make them truly magical.

Brand example: Supply, a brand that sells personal grooming products, educated their subscribers about a Halloween-appropriate ingredient in their Healing Post Shave: witch hazel. By including a customer review and a cheeky joke to boot, Supply effectively drums up brand awareness and potentially some product sales.

product review email from supply

4. Consider how your products can translate to Halloween decorations

In 2020 alone, 53% of people decorated for Halloween, according to the National Retail Foundation. That means consumers plan to spook-out their home, their pet, or even their food and beverages as they take part in the festivities.

Think of the creative ways your products can help your subscribers decorate or dress up and use your Halloween email to share your genius ideas.

Brand example: Healthy snack brand, Gr8nola used their Halloween email to share recipes for ghastly treats—disguising avocado toast as Dracula or brownies as mini grave sites—that feature their products as the main ingredient.

avocado toast made to look spooky

5. Combine Halloween emails with fall trends to reach a broader audience

Based on what you know about your audience, your Halloween email could play into their interests and use widely publicized events as a hook.

Fall isn’t just sweater weather season or the time of the year people turn drinking pumpkin spiced lattes into a sport—it’s also a time of topical events in society and politics. In the U.S. alone, October’s often the lead up to elections and the World Series, and those are just the recurring events.

Brand example: During the 2020 race for U.S. Vice President, California Senator Kamala Harris stood her ground as former Vice President Mike Pence tried to speak over her. Bird + Stone, a brand that donates 10% of every purchase to a cause of their customers’ choosing, flocked to the opportunity to create a Halloween email (and speciality product) that celebrated Kamala Harris’s now iconic response.

maya rudolph drinking a pina colada

6. Bring formerly popular products back from the grave

Skeletons and ghosts rising from the grave is a common motif of Halloween. While you may not be able to resurrect the dead, you can bring past product lines back to life for a one-time Halloween promotion.

Brand example: Ugly Drinks offered their subscribers a special bundle of two popular flavors, that before Halloween, the healthy soda makers had passed on to the bubbly afterlife. It gave their audience access to drinks they might’ve been missing and the Ugly Drinks team the chance to weave in some wicked puns.

animated email from ugly drinks with a halloween design

7. Use a one-day sale message to create a sense of urgency

In a similar vein, your Halloween email campaigns can usher your end of season products to their retail graves. Stir up a sense of urgency by advertising a one-day, get-it-before-it’s-gone sale.

Brand example: Color Camp, a customizable nail art brand, is all about promoting the season’s most fashionable nail trends. But staying current means changing over inventory, fast. The brand used their Halloween email to promote fall-inspired manicures and touted that it was their subscribers’ last chance to buy the seasonal designs before Color Camp said R.I.P.

a hand with a black manicure

Use your Halloween emails as a chance to build relationships ahead of BCFM

There isn’t a prescribed template for the perfect Halloween email campaign and that’s part of the beauty of the seasonal event.

Your Halloween email can be whatever you imagine it to be—quirky, informative, entertaining. The one important thing to remember is that Halloween falls just before the biggest time of the year for business owners, so now’s the time to forge the customer relationships that’ll help you reach your goals come Black Friday and Cyber Monday (BFCM).

Your toil and trouble now will pay off in spades as you head into the holiday season.

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Emily Riedy
Emily Riedy
Content strategist
Emily Riedy is a content strategist at Klaviyo. She creates and optimizes content to help online businesses own their growth. Before joining Klaviyo, Emily worked at a digital marketing agency where she created content to help small business owners and marketers grow their online advertising presence. When she’s not writing, Emily enjoys making tacos, running, and sipping on orange wine.