With my half birthday approaching (FYI people, it's May 19th), I've been doing some thinking about what the next six months will bring. I pride myself on being a "planner": My mother's day gifts are bought by mid-April, the airline tickets for my July trip were in the can in January, and I always buy my Christmas presents in October.
In six months, I'll be in full throttle holiday mode: Cornucopias (yeah, I'm one of those people...), pine-scented candles, egg nog, etc. I'll probably be eating the pumpkins I bought for Halloween. I'm a festive person, and I'm not ashamed to say it.
As a consumer, this time is usually when I'm the most open/vulnerable to marketing. Coca-Cola has nailed their holiday marketing so well that their Santa is a built-in part of my Christmas memories.
While Christmas gets the majority of marketing's attention, Halloween fervor grips me with equal -- or more -- intensity. The year I don't dress up for Halloween is the year that I've been lobotomized or otherwise compromised. But while the big day is always very exciting, I live for the build up -- the horror movie marathons, the spooky decorations, haunted hayrides, and Halloween-related commercials. This Snickers commercial nailed it: The mask looks like the female version of the bad guy from the Saw franchise (scary); the face-touching is hilarious in the most awkward kind of way (funny); there are kids inside the giant lady (cute).
Why am I bringing all of this up now? Because you should be following my good, planning-ahead example and start planning your holiday campaigns now. We get numerous article submissions about planning holiday campaigns in October and November and, unfortunately, that's way too late. As marketers, you need to be pulling on your Santa costume or draping fake spider webs in your entryway (...in your mind...) when everyone else is buying illegal fireworks for the Fourth of July.