Halloween is one of the most popular days of celebration in the U.S. and in a number of other countries. The sights and sounds are at times skin-crawling and at other times whimsical. Halloween is tailored made for most small businesses to utilize in their marketing campaigns.

My suggestion for small business owners is to create a Halloween scavenger hunt with 4 or 5 other local businesses and invite kids of all ages to join in to win prizes and treats. And invite local P.D. , EMT or F.D. members to take part as a way to let parents know it’s a safe venture for all involved. The addition of local law enforcement and fire departments is good for all parties involved to build community relations.

Small businesses that cater more to adults can create their own scavenger hunt on the lines of a pub crawl. If you small business is not a pub or restaurant you can become the sponsor and organizer of the hunt, that way you’ll connect with other businesses as well as new customers.

The scavenger hunt might include a printed map or menu to lead each participant to the next clue or clues. You could try using postcard size maps that are traded in for updated ones at each stop. The beauty of this type of Halloween scavenger hunt is that it all occurs in the physical space and not the virtual space. For an hour or two everyone involved will have to interact with others face to face. Now there a revolutionary idea.

Get to together with a group of other small business owners and invite them to bring their families and friends for a brainstorming session. Once at the gathering decide the logistics of the event as well as things like ages and prizes. The more input and planning you put into it the more the participants will get out of it, and if done right you’ll be creating a new community Halloween tradition and annual marketing campaign all rolled into one.

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