A Halloween Experiment: A Case Study in Content Marketing Strategy
Here at Muse, we believe you should never think of your website as “finished”. Adding fresh original content and improving the functionality, site speed, and user experience is always worth the effort. That’s why we did some decorating for Halloween. Updated images, spooky nicknames and profile pictures of our team, a custom seasonal icon, and a hidden memory game (what’s known as an “Easter Egg”) were partly just for fun. But it was also an experiment to see how this extra effort might impact our engagement metrics. Would decorating for Halloween make our website more engaging? And were we more visible on our social networks?
Have a look at the changes we made to celebrate Halloween by shaking up our look for the month of October
We turned our profile pictures and names into spooky characters.
The results are in
When compared to the previous 31 days, overall sessions were actually up by 30% in October. Once on the Muse site, visitors also got a little more engaged. Pageviews were up 35%, pages viewed per session were up over 3% and the bounce rate improved by 13%. However, the most notable difference in October was with the number of returning visitors – up 51%!
Along with the changes to our website, we switched out our social banners and profile photos across all of our social channels. Gotta stay consistent! We shared the individual profiles from our team members that had been Halloween-ified along with a Halloween themed Q&A where visitors/fans could learn more about our team – like our favorite scary movie and favorite Halloween candy.
Our overall impressions on our socials were down for the month in comparison to the impressions we typically average. This is primarily because we didn’t boost any of our posts for the month of October, we only boost original content that has the intent of driving people back to our website (ie: our blog!). So the interesting piece from this is that our engagement (people liking and commenting) was up 32% overall, and the Halloween specific posts earned us 132% jump in post engagement. That is a WIN.
People like original, authentic content. Some of our best performing posts are always team-centric. Sharing individual profiles from the team, in a light-hearted way, was an opportunity for people to get to know us. The Muse team is a sum of all our parts, so why not show that off?
One of the most exciting benefits from Halloween creative content switch was the praise we received from our industry. Both Stimulant online and Strategy magazines daily newsletter highlighted our work. If our peers love and appreciate our work, we know we’ve done something right.
Overall the Halloween takeover was an opportunity to demonstrate our belief in the importance of staying dynamic and interesting as a brand. It was an experiment that totally proved our hypothesis. Continuous improvements to the quality of your content, functionality, site speed, and UX will pay you back in many ways. Yes, it will improve your performance in search. Most importantly, your website will be delivering an even better experience to your visitors. They will notice and appreciate you for it.