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Halloween and Covid-19: which brands are creeping the spirit alive?

Twitter gets spooky bringing hilarious Halloween tweets to life

While every day feels pretty spooky right now, the official scariest day of the year has crept upon us. Although celebrations are likely to be different, The Drum looks to the brands creeping the Halloween spirit alive this year.

What does Halloween look like during a global pandemic? Well, apple bobbing is definitely out of the equation, while trick-or-treating is being strongly discouraged by governments as they work to stem the spread of Covid-19. 2020 is the year we all do the monster mash from the comfort of our own homes.

But what does this mean for the brands who make big bucks each year selling Halloween related gear? From Twitter to Samsung, Google to Burger King, The Drum rounds up the brands who are keeping the Halloween spirit alive regardless. Look out below for the most bone-chilling ads from around the world.

Twitter: ‘Halloween Tweets’

In true Twitter style, the social platform has teamed up with some of the UK's most renowned illustrators to bring to life its most authentic, hilarious and relatable Halloween tweets.

From eerie realisations, mortifying moments to awkward encounters – Twitter has immortalised Tweets on the streets and tunnels of London, including a glow in the dark monstrously absorbent paper towel, a zombie annoyed about movie characters not using coasters and an embarrassed hipster retweeted by a ghost.

Overall Rating
5/5 Vote

Burger King Scandanavia: ‘Cancelled Clown’

Back to its old tricks, in restrooms across Scandinavia, Burger King is playing a Halloween stunt on its rival, McDonald’s.

The Swedish agency Ingo Stockholm installed new voice-recognition software in Burger King toilets, which is trained to listen out for the phrase ’cancelled clown.’ If uttered three times, the lights of the toilet dim down hauntingly and an eerie Ronald McDonald appears in the mirror via special visual effects applied to a two-way ’smart mirror.’

Overall Rating
4/5 Vote

Burger King: ‘Scary Places’

In its latest attempt to troll its competitors, Burger King has got in the Halloween spirit by offering free Whoppers to any customer who dares to drive by a select number of abandoned fast-food restaurants once operated by unnamed rival chains.

According to the rules, brave souls who get within 300 feet of the abandoned burger chains and confirm it on the BK App will receive a coupon for a free, flame-grilled Whopper sandwich, eligible to be redeemed online or for in-store pickup or delivery.

Overall Rating
3/5 Vote

Skittles: ‘Zombie Skittles’

For the Halloween season, Skittles has brought back ‘Zombie Skittles‘. To mark the occasion, it has created a costume, designed to help you stay socially distant this Halloween. Six-foot-wide, the dimensions of the costume ensure the wearer stays well away from passing humans.

As part of the costume, a ‘Zombie Mode‘ button is hidden on the wrist. When activated, the costume omits the smell of ‘rotten zombie‘ to keep even the creepiest ghoul more than six feet away.

Overall Rating
1/5 Vote

Zambezi: ‘Screamfest’

The scariest thing about Halloween this year isn’t the ghosts and goblins, but those who refuse to wear a mask. That’s why Zambezi has created a truly spooky Covid-19 PSA especially well suited for the times.

Helmed by director Gina Kelly, the film features Halloween’s Michael Myers himself, once again playing Nick Castle.

Overall Rating
4/5 Vote

Hobgoblin: ‘Best Sipped in the Dark’

Marston’s has launched Hobgoblin’s new ‘Best Sipped in the Dark’ - a Halloween campaign under the brand’s new ‘Born Different’ positioning. The out-of-home (OOH) led campaign features a high impact special build creative using glow in the dark UV paint on the Ebor Street Mural in Shoreditch.

Overall Rating
5/5 Vote

Mitch & Me: ‘Nothing Will Scare You Anymore’

Russian dog-shampoo brand, Mitch & Me has released its Halloween campaign to show people the advantage of having an intimidating-looking dog.

Overall Rating
5/5 Vote

Google: ‘Halloween At Home’

On a series of Google Meet calls, Stewart, Witch, Werewolf and Ghost put their monster brains together to cook up some scares from home.

From playing Halloween music on your new Nest Audio speaker to using your Chromecast with Google TV to stream all of your favourite scary movies, this ghoulish group of monsters is full of tricks only made possible by Google Nest.

Overall Rating
5/5 Vote

Burger King: ‘#BroomThru​’

Earlier this week Burger King was trending on Twitter in Brazil. Why? Under the hashtag ’#BroomThru’, the burger joint has launched an activation for Halloween will give a free Whopper for all clients that cross a BK’s Drive-Thru ’flying’ on a broom like a witch. It was developed by agency partner David São Paulo.

Overall Rating
5/5 Vote

Samsung: ‘Spook-tacular’

Samsung has given a 300-year-old property (which dates back to the 18th century) a high-tech Halloween style makeover for its latest campaign.

The Old Bury – the oldest house in Stevenage’s old town – was completely made-over using projecting mapping and the connective power of Samsung SmartThings technology to thrill a few local families in a series of private Covid-19 compliant performances ahead of Halloween night.

Overall Rating
5/5 Vote

Habito: ‘Demon Cleansing Ritual’

Habito has introduced the 'Demon Cleansing Ritual' kit for any Brits spooked by the possibility that they aren’t the only presence in their home.

The concept was created by recent graduate David Shorrock, after he pitched via You Can Now’s network of universities, colleges and art and design schools, as part of Habito’s Halloween challenge.

The brief asked graduates to come up with a creative concept that would be bold, clever and bring Habito’s mission (to save people from mortgage hell) to life.

Inspired by research that showed that 55% of people in the UK would be put off buying a property if they thought it was haunted, Shorrock created Habito’s eight-step home exorcism ritual to banish any ghouls back to the other side this Halloween.

Overall Rating
5/5 Vote

Rehab: ‘Treat Street’

With Covid-19 restrictions overshadowing this year’s Halloween and people around the whole UK unsure about what they can do around trick-or-treating, creative technology agency Rehab has developed an AR gaming experience concept, ’Treat Street’, that can allow children and families alike to trick-or-treat in their neighbourhoods safely.

Overall Rating
5/5 Vote

Hell Yeah: ‘Hot Sauce for the Damned’

To celebrate All Hallows’ Eve, JDO has created a chilling concept for Hell Yeah, a seriously intense hot sauce with a vampire’s bite that’s sure to get your blood boiling.

At first glance, you might see a red chilli pepper, but look again and you’ll see a vampire’s mouth. Presented at the table in its own coffin, Hell Yeah invites the heat in a playfully provocative and enticingly irreverent way.

Overall Rating
5/5 Vote

Additional reporting by Ellen Ormesher.

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