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Author Biography:

Stephanie Taylor Christensen  is a freelance writer who covers personal finance, career, health,and small business news. She is the founder of Indebtedless and Om for Mom prenatal yoga in Columbus, Ohio. Connect with her on Twitter.@STCWriting or www.stephanietaylorchristensen.com



5 Ways To Align Your Handmade Business With Halloween
By Stephanie Taylor Christensen Tuesday, October 4, 2016
The timing and popularity among a breadth of customers makes Halloween a prime opportunity for handmade businesses. Not only does the average person in the United States spend about $75 on Halloween, according to the National Retail Federation; Practical eCommerce reports that nearly a quarter of shoppers start their holiday shopping during the spooky season. In fact, consumers in the United States spent more than $6 billion last year, just to get in the Halloween spirit!

Aside from revenue potential, consider the benefit of connecting with an audience that includes kids, parents, grandparents, professionals and even pets less than a month before the official start of the holiday shopping season.

Here are a just a few ways you can align your handmade business with Halloween.  
Cater to the trends. Seventeen Magazine predicts this year’s popular Halloween costume themes will include t-shirts with phrases on them like “Netflix and chill,” the Instagram butterfly filter, emojis, pineapples and Hawaiian-inspired themes, Starbucks, and references to celebs like Kylie Jenner and Taylor Swift. Costumes surrounding the upcoming presidential election, the Olympics, box office hits like Captain America, The Secret Life of Pets, Zootopia, and of course, the Pokémon Go app will be popular in Halloween 2016 too. Whether you craft handmade makeup kits that capture such themes, masks, party décor or accessories; developing a few product lines around the biggest trends is a simple way to connect with Halloween shoppers.

Add low-priced add on items people can’t resist. Whether you have a retail store, sell at remote events, or online; adding a few low cost yet clever Halloween-inspired handmade items to your product offering is a simple way to boost your average order value without requiring that you make a significant financial investment in its marketing and development.
 
Think about items people can use year after year for the Halloween season: Handmade reusable burlap trick or treat bags, spooky-shaped soaps, stencil kits for pumpkin carving, and handmade bottle toppers in the shape of witch hats and broomsticks are all easy add-on items that appeal to customers without requiring much purchase consideration. Offer these items consistently enough and you’ll start to build a reputation as a shop worthy of checking out for clever crafts each Halloween season.
 
Be a source of spooky inspiration. Don’t underestimate the demand for your talents and knowledge as a handmade crafter during Halloween. A series of short “How to” videos with simple instructional tips people can use to make Halloween crafts, décor and costumes shot on your smartphone and uploaded to social media can help you promote your business and expand your reach. At the end of each video, drive viewers to your website to buy preassembled kits that make it easy to replicate the techniques you demonstrate. 
 
Whether your tips share how to turn mason jars into beggar’s night luminaries, craft Halloween-inspired scents, or showcase ways to make fake blood and hypoallergenic costume make up, Halloween offers so many opportunities to reach an audience you might not otherwise attract while demonstrating what you do best.  
 
Take your skills on the road. Fall festivals abound in the weeks leading up to Halloween. Reach out to local pumpkin patches in your area and harvest festivals to inquire about opportunities to sell your clever Halloween creations. Displaying your items at such events can also help you spread the word about your business with inexpensive, family-friendly giveaways like branded glow in the dark sticks, or bags with your logo that kids can use for trick or treating.
 
Get in front of the local media. The local media is always on the hunt for clever programming that ties their news coverage to upcoming holidays and timely events. Use your handmade knowledge to pitch marketable themes (think, “five costumes you can make in less than fifteen minutes”) to your local news stations to expand your brand awareness in the community and drive traffic to your store or website. 


 
 
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