Killer Content: Creating Content that Will Have Your Audience at the Edge of Their Seats


As Halloween approaches, we’re all embracing our inner spookiness. We want our decorations to induce gasps, our costumes to elicit screams, and our trick or treats to be utterly memorable. But it’s not just on Halloween that we should be thinking about making a killer impression. Our brands should be striving to create content that’s a total scream all year round. Here’s how to create marketing content that will cause a shiver down your fans’ spines – and that will give your bottom line a bump in the night.

Create The Right Atmosphere

Halloween is all about the atmosphere: mood lighting, spider webs, creepy music, and bewitching costumes. There’s a reason for this. You’re not only tapping into your audience’s expectations about what a spooky night entails, but you’re also guiding their experience. Your content should do the same thing – on All Hallows’ and beyond. Think about what kind of experience or feeling you want to evoke for your audience, and lay the foundations for that in your content. Infuse your tone, visual treatments, topics, and soundtracks with that vibe, and you’ll be priming your audience for a spine-tingling experience. Take those TurboTax “spooky” tax ads, which play on the average taxpayer’s bone-deep fear of attempting to do their taxes. Full of ghostly imagery and jokes, they channel that fear while making light of it.

Give Them Something New

All great horror gives us something familiar, but with a twist. Most spooky tropes are rooted in age-old folklore, mythology, and reimaginings of past stories. That shared history and experience is what makes them feel “real” to us, even though our logical brains know that vampires and werewolves aren’t real (right?). Great content marketing does the same thing. It takes a topic, concept, or format that we’re familiar with, and offers a unique take on it that makes our audience sit up like an abruptly awakened vampire in its coffin. “Tell the truth, but make it fascinating,” as ad industry legend David Ogilvy used to say. A good example is Velcro and its educational video on the appropriate legal uses of the Velcro brand name. Sounds boring, right? Not when it’s delivered as part of an all-singing, all-dancing ad straight out of a vintage speakeasy. Now that’s killer content.

Don’t Forget the Jump Scares

Hands up if you’ve ever screamed while watching a horror movie not because you were scared, but because you were startled. In film terminology, shocking your audience with a loud noise or sudden movement is known as a “jump scare.” While your marketing content probably shouldn’t startle your audience off their seats and onto the floor, it should have an element of surprise. The more engaging, interesting, and surprising your content is the more impressions and interest it’ll receive. Don’t hold back on the punchy headlines, bright visuals, or killer CTAs. Your goal is to educate and entertain at the same time – and achieve shockingly successful conversions.

It’s Time to Start Haunting Your Audience

If you’re a serial creator of ho-hum marketing content, use the spooky season to channel your inner killer marketer. Develop a strategy that taps into the cultural zeitgeist, evokes the right emotions, and offers up plenty of edge-of-the-chair material in a format that your audience can’t tear their eyes (or ears) away from.

Need some help developing some killer creative? StellaPop can help. We’re all about content strategies that will have audiences howling for more. For more information, just get in touch!

See Also:

Brand Strategy vs. Content Marketing Strategy

Content Marketing: Slow and Steady Wins the Race

How to Effectively Measure the Worth of your Content Marketing Program

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