Tail Twitching Halloween Pet Contest Ideas (and More) for Veterinary Marketing
It doesn’t take a Magic 8 Ball to know that Signs Point to Yes! when it comes to the success of Halloween marketing for veterinary practices. Pets own the internet nearly every day of the year, but put a costume on a pug or catch your kitty sleeping in a carved pumpkin and forget about it – it’s Halloween for the win!
Stepping up your veterinary practice’s Halloween marketing game is more important now than in years past. Covid has kept many of us at home – and online – for much of this mind-bending year. Couple that with the collective uncertainty on how to celebrate Halloween with social distancing in mind, and *poof* bringing your pet community together online can be a spook-tacular success.
Conversations from Beyond…
In Beyond Indigo Pets’ ongoing Facebook Live series Kelly Speaks, our intrepid CEO spoke with long-time BI blogging manager Kate Matthews about Halloween marketing ideas for veterinary practices. From the increased need to educate the boon of new pet owners on Halloween safety tips to Covid considerations for pet costumes and contests, Beyond Indigo has a few ideas for Halloween marketing magic.
As discussed in the video, blogging offers veterinary practices of all sizes the opportunity to educate and engage with their clients in a meaningful way that also drives social media traffic to your website and boosts your site’s organic search visibility at the same time.
The post-quarantine adoption boom has resulted in an unprecedented increase in first-time pet owners who may not know that Halloween can present unique dangers to pets, let alone what they are. Your blog can help you use this teachable moment to your advantage when it comes to client education and building brand awareness.
Here are a few topics to consider:
- Halloween Pet Safety 101 – Use this topic to offer a 10,000-foot view of Halloween pet safety considerations, including toxins (from glow sticks to chocolate and Xylitol), pet costume considerations, party safety, decor anxiety, and more.
- Pet Costume Trends, Tips, and Safety – Take a more granular look at the phenomenon that is pet costumes. Divulge your favorite pet costume ideas, how to get the right fit (along with tips on how to keep your pet wearing it!), and other tips and tricks for playing dress-up with pets. You can also touch on considerations for dying a pet’s fur or painting their nails if it’s appropriate to your audience.
- Halloween Treats and Toxins – Halloween can be tricky when treats abound – especially for our pets! Use this blog to take a closer look at the candies, decorations, and other digestibles (or undigestibles, as the case may be) that can plague pets around Halloween. Be sure to temper your toxin talk with a look at what treats and tricks are safe for pets, too!
Halloween Pet Contest Ideas from the Vault
Online pet-themed Halloween contests are the cat’s meow when it comes to increased engagement with your clients and extended online community. Costume contests are always a perennial favorite, but don’t be scared to shake it up or add something new to the mix this year!
Here are a few of our favorites:
- Guess the X-Ray – Pets eat some crazy things! This is a great opportunity to educate people about foreign bodies in pets in an engaging way. Have your Facebook audience guess what the pet ate based off of the photo of an ultrasound or X-Ray. At the end of the week, let your Facebook audience know the answer. You can give someone a prize if it was an especially hard one to guess, otherwise it can be just an engaging post!
- Spooky Guessing Game: How many bones are in the jar? – Post a photo of a large Halloween decorated jar on Facebook with small dog bone treats. Have people guess how many are in the jar and the person with the closest guess wins! You could have the jar in the office too, and encourage people to come in and see it for themselves (and pick up some pet-friendly treats while they’re there!)
- Pet Themed Carved Pumpkins – Have some talented cravers out there? Encourage people to share a photo in the comments of a pet or animal themed pumpkin carving.
- BatCat! – encourage people to dress their cats as bats and share the photo online. This is especially fun with black or gray cats, and a great way to promote awareness of black cat safety during the season.
We understand that not all practices feel freaky this time of year, and that’s ok, too. There is still a cornucopia autumnal alternatives. Here are two of our favorites…
- Harvest with Pets – Take a photo of your pet at during harvest at a corn husking event, fall carnival, or with a scarecrow. Share it on Facebook and encourage people to share other photos in the comment section below. The staff can vote on the best photo.
- Pets in the Pumpkin Patch – Encourage your audience to share photos of their pets in pumpkin patches.
For more on Halloween marketing and pet contest ideas, including how to integrate your digital marketing strategies into your curbside care and in-practice marketing, check out Kelly Speaks: Halloween Marketing. And, if you would like to learn more about how increasing client engagement on social media can work for your practice, please let us know.
Originally published as Hair-Raising Halloween Pet Contest Ideas for Veterinarians, by Giovanna McDanel, September, 2017
Revised October, 2020 by Kate Matthews