You scream, I scream, we all scream for H-Ween’s “iced” screams!  The recent NRF Prosper Insight & Analytics H-Ween survey estimates that 80.7M (66.2%) of US adults will celebrate H-Ween 2014. With slightly more women than men celebrating H-Ween; dressing pets in costumes; handing out candy; carving a p-kin; taking kids trick or treating; and a much higher % of females  (52.3% vs 40.9% males) decorating homes/yards, H-Ween MUST be a delightfully overwhelmingly distaff-edly inspired day!  Well, NOT REALLY. Here’s the other side of the story. MEN are more likely to:

Perhaps, Frankenstein, the Werewolf, Dracula, the Headless Horseman, the Mummy, Harry Potter (& his buds), Dr Death, da Joker, da Destroyer, Diablo, Deadbolt, Darth Vader &/or the Devil (Himself) wore the right kind of genes to be the patron saints/sinners of H-Ween. WADDAUTHINK? (Yes ladies, it’s another Men’s Club.)


The Nat’l Retail Fed issues estimated sales for 8 major holidays (and the BTS season) on a yearly basis. T-1 lists those 9 major selling/buying events totaling almost $900 B for 2014. The smallest being St Pat’s Day (about $4¾ B in March or ½%+ of our holiday total). The Xmas Season on the other hand is a robust 87% of that total. H-ween (our featured holiday) is ONLY a shade over 4/5 of 1% of the $891.59 B total. Having said that, we have NO FEAR in telling you that whether our metric is 2013 vs 2014 H-ween (+5.87%) or from The Great Recession (2009) till H-ween 2014 (+55.87%), H-ween is the uncontested champion growth rate holiday. YES, whether you’re on your way to becoming Twilight’s heroine or Dracula’s the “told story”, H-ween unequivocally STILL IS AMERICA”S FASTEST GROWING HOLIDAY! RTHEREANYQUESTIONS?


For purposes of spending H-Ween is a 4 headed MONSTER (Costumers, Candy, Decorations and Greeting Cards).


T-2’s story is that H-ween 2014 shows a total avg spend of $77.52 per H-ween buyer making a $7.40 B contribution to the economy with 37.7% being spent on Costumes, 30.1% for Candy, 21.2% for Decorations and 4.7% for Greeting Cards.


T-3’s tale is one of GROWTH. Overall the H-ween economy shows a fairly robust growth of almost 6% (which is very good by anybody’s standards.) America’s “sweet tooth” (Candy) leads the way with a 34% increase. Costume sales will grow 7%+, Decorations +3% with Greeting Cards showing a decrease in sales of almost 3%. (The NRF has estimated that there will be more Americans (67.4%) buying Costumes this H-ween than in any previous H-ween. Once considered a kids holiday, it now belongs to adults as well.)


T-4 simply tells us where H-ween “shopping” will be. Of all the possible venues, we list the Top 10 given by the NRF survey. Over 50% of all H-ween shoppers will visit Discounters followed by over shopping at Speciality Stores (including H-ween Speciality Shops) followed by ¼ shopping at Grocery Stores, slightly over at Dept. Stores AND about doing Online shopping. Please notice that Thrift and Drug Stores will also receive at least 10% of all shopping visits, too. W/O fear of contradiction we can easily say that H-ween is a holiday “on the cheap” as it continues to be “on the creep”.



Plummeting PUMP prices are getting a lot of media gas these days. Suffice it to say that from b/t Oct to Xmas that we expect that US drivers will now save $54 B. A fam of 4 with 2 drivers should be able to enjoy a $52.80 gas “rebate” of sorts. (1100 miles per driver @ 25 mpg saving 20¢ a gal [vs 2012 prices] for 3 mos). Our estimates account for less driving today and depend on the 4cast of gas price predictions to be realized. Our message to drivers is to plan for your “gas rebate”. Our mythical fam of 4 should be able to buy 2 or 3 fairly nice holiday gifts for somebody. May be those should be “self” gifts or perhaps a holiday donation to your fave charity. Plan for those savings and specifically use it as a X-mas bonus. GOOD LUCK!

About bernacmd

For over 24 years, University of Detroit Mercy Marketing Professor Michael Bernacchi, Ph.D., J.D, has produced "uNDER tHE mIKE-rOSCOPE", a newsletter discussing current "marketing and advertising¹s bends, trends & ends." A well-know fixture in Detroit and national media, UDM's marketing guru has made several appearances on CNN's "Talk Back Live," the Voice of America worldwide radio network (VOA), ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC and on the pages of Sports Illustrated, Time, TV Guide, the New York Times, USA Today, the Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post, to name a few. At University of Detroit Mercy, he has taught courses in Marketing Management, Consumer Behavior, Marketing Communications, Research and Corporate Social Responsibility and Sports and Entertainment Marketing. Michael Bernacchi can be reached at 313-993-1116 or Please appropriately attribute the following for their work on uNDER tHE mIKE-rOSCOPE: Yen Ju Lee Robert Rouse Vidhyasagar Natarajan Eric Baumgardner & Ian Young
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