Many of you may of heard of the Haunted House Association but you would be surprised at how many people didn’t even know the haunt industry had this association because many do not consider the haunt industry to be a large and significant industry. For any reason if you did not know or did not think this industry is large you have another thing coming. This is a good place to start doing your research for your market. They have a lot of useful information and if you become a member there are vendor discounts for all the major suppliers to the industry.
I bring the HHA up because at this point in the How To Start A Haunted House Series we are working on marketing and this is one of your resources. The other resource is HauntWorld and if you go to the Haunted Facts page of their site you can pull some very useful market research data. Now at this point you need to be figuring out your target market which is basically done for with the research data at HauntWorld but there is more to figure out.
For further research you can check your local library for demographics and now a days can probably find this information through a google search for your area. To find out if there is a demand you can perform some primary research which would consist of checking traffic flow at a prospective location or performing a survey by asking certain questions to people at a location. You can often pay a organization to perform this type of research but it can often get expensive.
To start with you need demographics for your region. How many people in your target market live in your area. What percentage of this population do you plan to get to your haunt. Does your target population have a demand for this sort of attraction. Do they have the income to afford your attraction if it is higher scale and costs more than most. At this point you need to define your target customer. The way you do this is to write out a detailed description of him or her, where do they work, what do they do in their free time, do they have hobbies or pets and kids? Give a really detailed description of your ideal customer.
This is now going to be your target customer for your marketing. Focus everything at this person because that is the ideal customer and who you want to come to your haunt. Now is this always going to be the case, probably not but from my marketing education and experience this has always been where to start.
So now you will go ahead and continue with the business plan from SCORE that we linked to in How To Start A Haunted House Business Part 3. If you have any questions or comments on other sources of information for the haunt industry let us know because it would be useful for our other readers and we are always looking for new information to pass on.
Images by Flickr user Barb Ar