PetSmart leverages social media to drive Halloween sales

PHOENIX — PetSmart is leveraging Facebook to drive sales of pet costumes, as well as Halloween-themed accessories, toys and treats. 

The retailer will be stocked with everything from pumpkin and witch costumes for guinea pigs to a whole assortment of costumes for dogs that include bandanas, hair bows and angel wings and exclusive character costumes from Disney, Martha Stewart Pets, DC Comics, Marvel and Peanuts.

Shoppers are encouraged to use a virtual “try on” feature available on PetSmart’s Facebook page. Called PetSmart’s Spooktacular Costume Machine, shoppers can upload a photo of their pets and virtually outfit them with 10 different costumes. Shoppers can also add props and text and share the photo with friends through email, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest — a move that encourages people to share a whimsical photo of their pet while allowing PetSmart to build further brand awareness and drive potential new shoppers into its stores.

As further incentive, the company is offering people who use the virtual feature coupons they can print out, including $2 off any PetSmart costume purchase and buy-one, get-one treat. The Facebook feature will be available starting Sept. 16.