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Consumers’ Cure for Stress? Halloween

October 18, 2012 1 comment

What do you get when you combine tenuous consumer confidence, discouraging employment outlook, and an upcoming Presidential election? Economic uncertainty, which generally leads to consumers clamping down harder on their wallets. That’s not quite the case, though, with Halloween.

This year, a record number of consumers (71.5%) plan to spend a record amount of money ($79.82) on the holiday according to insights we collected for the National Retail Federation. As BIGinsight EVP Phil Rist puts it: “There’s some pent-up demand for having some fun this year.”

Aside from fun, though, it seems that a growing number of consumers is viewing Halloween as having, well, a therapeutic benefit. According to the latest insights from our October survey, one in four celebrants (25.6%) agreed that Halloween “somewhat” or “very much” a stress reliever, rising 20% from last year. And, that number grows substantially among the age groups most likely to don a costume or head to a party this year: 18-24 year olds (39.5%) and 25 to 34 year olds (36.8%), both up from a year ago.

Interestingly, while the thought that Halloween relieves stress declines with age (see chart below), the number of 45 to 54 year olds adhering to this sentiment has risen 36% over a year ago – the highest growth in any age group. Perhaps it’s because this group – on the cusp of retirement and/or sending kids to college and/or worrying about property values and/or etc. – might be most in need of a little levity.

Halloween is "Somewhat" or "Very Much" a Stress Reliever

My tip for a low-stress Halloween? Nix the raisins on Beggar’s Night. Passing out some sugar to the neighbor kids sure beats pulling endless amounts of toilet paper out of your trees the next morning.

Source: BIGinsight.com

© 2012, Prosper®

BIGinsight™ is a trademark of Prosper Business Development Corp.

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Embracing Escapism: 70% Plan to Celebrate Halloween This Year

With the U.S. economy on unsteady ground for the past several years, have consumers just given up on a full recovery? We talk about terms like the “new normal” and wonder if the uncertain economy is just now a part of life. But consumers can’t live their lives mired in the doldrums; we seem to be gravitating toward outlets that give us freedom to laugh, enjoy life, and let us forget the everyday “norm.” It’s called escapism. For some, it’s following all things Kardashian, striking up a dialogue on the latest Here Comes Honey Boo Boo exploits, or waiting in line for the new Apple iPhone 5. For many of us – 7 in 10 to be exact – it’ll mean celebrating Halloween this year.

For the past ten years, BIGinsight has been a proud provider of Halloween insights for the National Retail Federation, and this year, we found that 170 million adults will be partaking in the festivities, a new record. Whether it’s attending a party, passing out candy, or even getting Fido in on the act, consumers seem bound and determined to release that pent-up demand for having some fun despite everyday uncertainties. And of the $8 billion dollars consumers are expected to spend on the holiday, nearly $3 billion will be scared up for costumes – and some of this year’s favorites are shown below in the NRF’s Halloween 2012 infographic.

Top Halloween costumes for adults, kids and pets in 2012 – Infographic

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