Monday, October 11, 2010

Can You Even Imagine? Anticipated Spending on Halloween

I'm going off the rails again with an opinion piece! I think I explained in the comments of one post why Halloween has never been a holiday in my book. I know that it's very popular, but the fascination by adults seems to have crossed from normalcy to lunacy.

I am on a PR mailing list I love - the rep sends me fascinating information, and I wanted to share his most-recent nugget with you. Seriously, would you spend this kind of money on Halloween when you could buy beauty products?

According to Brand Keys, the New York-based brand and customer loyalty consultancy, this season consumers intend to spend 15% over last year, or nearly $70.00 to celebrate the holiday.

"This year the holiday falls on a Sunday," said Robert Passikoff, Brand Keys president. "That means that the celebration will start Friday night and run through the weekend, and consumers are already gearing up. Given the economy, consumers are looking for something to celebrate. And it won't have escaped anyone's notice that retailers, hoping for more than a ghost of a chance this year, started advertising Halloween candy, costumes, and decorations more than a month and a half ago. That hasn't hurt the holiday spending momentum either."

According to the 6,000 consumers polled by Brand Keys, half of their intended spend ($34.00) will go for costumes.

Among young adults, 18 to 24 years of age, the top-10 favored costumes...
  1. Jersey Shore cast member
  2. Lady Gaga
  3. Avatar character
  4. Snooki
  5. President Obama
  6. Iron Man
  7. Buzz Lightyear/Woody
  8. Pirate
  9. Alice In Wonderland/Mad Hatter
  10. Batman
Snooki? Who would want to be Snooki? Who in the world is Buzz Lightyear? Yes, I'm too old for Toy Store, but doesn't that mean other adults are too? I can see Lady Gaga near the top of the list, given her crazy appeal. You'll note I selected one of her more discreet looks for the photo above and buried Snooki below so that she won't go in my feed. Snooki? Does anyone with a brain want to be Snooki? I guess I'll know when the unsubscribe notes start rolling in when this feature publishes.

The remaining 20% of this years Halloween spend will go towards cards and decorations. "Even in this electronic age, nearly 10% of the estimated spend is going for Halloween cards," noted Passikoff. Since the holiday spans an entire weekend, 63% of the respondents indicated that they were going to host or attend a Halloween party.

"The economy's been down and it s been a scary time for retailers," said Passikoff,"but things are looking up, particularly right now. I think it's safe to say that this year retailers can count on a boo-tiful Halloween."

Will you be spending money on anything other than candy or other treats to give to children who show up at your door? Given the choice, will you rent or purchase a costume or that new holiday palette you've been coveting?

Yes, I accepted one invitation to attend a Halloween party in Charleston, South Carolina, about 20 years ago. I went as a fashion victim. Am I over the hill?

Photos courtesy of and


Jayme said...

in response to the buzz light year. This will probably be most of the young adults trying to be 'ironic' I am right in the middle of that age range at 22, and i saw the first and second toy story when i was little. So even though i would not dress up as either, i think many in that age range did grow up with that movie.

Charlestongirl said...

Hey there, Jayme!

That explains Buzz Lightyear, but how do we explain Snooki?

Thanks for the help - It's clear I need an interpreter! :)

Eileen said...

I adore Halloween! It is one of my favorite holidays. It's a month of fun activities such as decorating the house,inside and out; hosting my annual pumpkin carving luncheon for my gal pals; having friends and their grand kids over for cookie and cupcake decorating; playing neighborhood holiday games such as Phantom; having guests over for our open house the weekend before Halloween, exclaiming over all the kids, young and old, who come to our house trick or treating; and, for me in a private moment, lighting candles and reflecting on memories of those who have passed. Yes, Halloween is a big to do in my household. Aren't we lucky that we live in a society where people can openly and enthusiastically embrace those days that are special to them?

Charlestongirl said...

I think you are in the majority, Eileen! It's clear from the marketing data that Halloween is enjoyed enormously by young and old. Maybe my father's aversion to the holiday rubbed off! :)

Then there were those nuns at school who claimed it was a pagan celebration. I laugh as I remember the silly stuff they taught us. One tried to convince us that the proper pronunciation of the word "been" was "bean." That didn't stick!

Funny, but your comment made me remember them. Who knows what triggers certain recollections?

I hope you enjoy the weekend. Just don't dress up as Snooki, OK?

Eileen said...

Not to worry! No Snookies here. Only a vampire and his corps bride.

Clarisse said...

Oh I'll be saving money then, since I do not like Halloween and won't do anything special except having friends for a lovely meal... but I don't need a special occasion to celebrate friendship and have an opportunity to wear nice make-up:-)

Charlestongirl said...

Hey there, Clarisse!

I'll be staying home, but probably writing or reading. I don't get too many kids here on Halloween anymore. The "children" who grew up on my street and nearby are all in college!

Ashley said...

I always want to dress up, but when I realize how much it will cost, I back out. I just can't justify spending so much for one night. though dressing up is tremendous fun, as long as it is something nice. if only I could do it affordably. in college I was the Chiquita Banana woman - the one with fruit in her hair and colorful skirt/top. it was such a fun outtit! another time in college I was a gypsy and had a good time with that one too. it's especially fun to do the makeup!

Charlestongirl said...

Ashley, Halloween is great for doing theatrical makeup! Now that would be fun!

Liz said...

I think snooki is popular because it's one of the most frightening costumes possible.

I've ignored the holiday for many years - the last time I attended a costume party was at the Cubi Point O Club in 1988 - but now that I live in a neighborhood with HORDES of children coming to the door, I'm going to put on Spock ears and some blue eyeshadow to try to get into the spirit of thigs. :-)