According the National Retail Federation, Americans will spend a record $8.4 billion this Halloween. The following numbers from the U.S. Census Bureau will help you decide on a product, a target market, a marketing campaign, and more to help your small business get a piece of the Halloween action.
41.2 million The estimated number of potential 5- to 14-year-old trick-or-treaters in 2014.
117.3 million The number of housing units—and thus potential stops—for trick-or-treaters in 2015.
Rhonda’s Rule. Don’t try to sell to everyone. Narrow your market focus. But these numbers give you an idea of just how big Halloween is.
Find a niche
302 The number of broomstick and casket manufacturing establishments in the US in 2012.
$3.6 billion Value of broomstick and casket shipments in 2012.
Rhonda’s Rule. You can often be more successful—have more customers and charge more—if you cater to a smaller, more defined market.
1,337 Number of U.S. manufacturers that produced chocolate and cocoa products in 2012.
$14.9 billion Value of shipped chocolate and cocoa products in 2012, up from $14.1 billion in 2007.
3,215 Number of US confectionary and nut stores that sell candy and other sweets.
$1.8 billion Sales at these stores in 2012.
Rhonda’s Rule. Say you’ve decided to enter an industry such as the candy business—an industry with many established companies. The good news about having competition is that you know people want what you sell. In fact, if you truly have no competition—a highly unlikely scenario—your product or service probably isn’t viable.
441 Number of U.S. manufacturing establishments that produced non-chocolate confectionary products in 2012.
$7.7 billion Total shipments in 2012.
Rhonda’s Rule. When you enter a crowded market, find a way to differentiate yourself from the competition. Believe it or not, some people dislike chocolate. But with such a large number of existing chocolate manufacturing businesses, you can stand out more by producing a different type of candy.
50,900 Acres of pumpkins harvested in the U.S. in 2013.
$149.9 million The value of all those pumpkins.
$1.1 billion Value of US fresh apples exported in 2014. (No numbers available for the number of apples bobbed on Halloween…)
Rhonda’s Rule. You can do well by doing good. Perhaps you’d rather produce something healthier than sweets. The US needs more small farmers. You could be one of them.
Who you gonna call? Mobile marketing
89 percent The percent of households that had a cellular phone in 2011, compared with only 36 percent in 1998.
Rhonda’s Rule. Think mobile first. With Americans checking their phones a total of 8 billion times a day, you want to make sure when your prospects are on the go, searching online for products and services like yours, your small business turns up in search results. Keep mobile devices in mind when designing your website, sending out your email newsletter, or designing any online marketing pieces, and make everything mobile-friendly.
$820 million Estimated construction spending on theme or amusement parks in 2014. Halloween can be a busy time for such venues.
4,471 Number of movie theaters in the US in 2013. Horror does well this time of year.
Rhonda’s Rule. More and more customers would rather pay for “experiences” rather than buy more stuff. And remember, even when the economy experiences a downturn, people will still look for inexpensive ways to have fun and escape.