I won't lie to you - I am not the most enthusiastic of Halloween converts. Whilst I have been known to pull on a costume on occasion (one zombie Super Mario ensemble being particularly memorable), I struggle to get into the macabre festival spirit every year. However it seems I may be in the minority - according to the latest stats published by Marketing Week, the retail value of Halloween in the UK has risen by over 38% in the last 4 years.
As an older millennial, I am again in the minority, as those aged 27-36 are now most likely to spend some serious money on Halloween-themed fancy dress for the 31st October. This is where the opportunity lies for UK retailers - to not just target children hungry for candy, cake or something good to take, but also adults thirsty for beer and party fare to celebrate All Hallows' Eve.
Sascha Cordes, a senior brand manager at Budweiser UK, comments that the strong sales growth in their product over the Halloween period proves that the festivities are no longer just celebrated by children trick or treating. With other brands such as Fanta and retail giants Aldi and Asda spending big on Halloween campaigns, it goes to show that this time of year now represents a huge opportunity for UK retailers.
So with my pumpkin all ready to be carved, and my new Halloween cocktails Pinterest page all set up, I feel that this year may be the year I fully embrace the Halloween spirit. Will you?
In 2013, the estimated UK retail value for Halloween stood at £230m. However, in the space of just four years, this has grown by 35%, with retail sales hitting £310m in 2016, according to Mintel. It predicts sales to grow another 3.2% this year, hitting £320m, with retailers such as John Lewis already crediting a rise in sales to Halloween buzz.