Mars delivers digital Treat Town app for Halloween celebrations
Mars Wrigley has unveiled its Treat Town digital app for mobile phones to help families celebrate Halloween in an innovative, socially distanced way amid the coronavirus pandemic, reports Neill Barston
As the US-headquartered company explained, it set out to create the virtual trick-or-treat experience with a target of ‘saving the season’ – with spooky festivities typically enjoyed by 175 million Americans.
But as the coronavirus pandemic has worsened in the US and around the world, plans for traditional community group celebrations have been severely affected, with state authorities urging caution on how families consider marking the occasion. This has prompted a response from confectionery manufacturers, including Mars Wrigley, to find an alternative means of engaging with consumers.
“Over the past five years, I’ve had the amazing opportunity to experience Halloween in the U.S. with my family and have personally realised that Halloween is one of those unique moments that makes the world smile,” said Romain Apert, Mars Wrigley’s Chief Information Officer. “So, the one question that was consistently coming through from collective conversations was, ‘can we make Halloween an even better moment, not only in 2020, but for the future years to come?’”
It’s a question that ultimately led to the creation of Treat Town — the first-ever digital tool to complement trick-or-treating in a virtual world. The mobile app provides new ways to create countless memories, even from behind a screen.
Through the app, trick-or-treaters have the option to redeem treat credits or give credits to the Boys & Girls Club of America, a voluntary after-school programs for young people — in addition to Mars Wrigley’s $50,000 donation this year.
The app is also full of interactive surprises. Users can collect their favourite candy, connect with friends and family and visit U.S. attractions — all from the comfort of their own home. While exploring Treat Town, people can explore must-see digital attractions, such as Disney’s Haunted Mansion, M&M’S World in Times Square, and a pit stop at the No. 18 M&M’S Toyota, driven by Kyle Busch, who drove a replica version of the virtual car live at the track.
In addition, the company has brought back Zombie Skittles and unveiled a socially distant Halloween costume inspired by the rotten zombie flavour found only in our product. The costume features a six-foot-wide design that mirrors the pack design of Zombie Skittles, along with a special “Zombie Mode” button that releases the scent of rotten zombie, all meant to further encourage fans to keep a safe distance while celebrating Halloween this year.
Additionally, in Newark, New Jersey, the home of our Mars Wrigley North American hub, the company hosted its travelling Halloween truck, designed to share seasonal fun with the most community members possible, while avoiding large and lingering crowds, and keeping the distribution completely outside for safety.
“We’ve been around for 100 years, and we take the responsibility of delivering this ritual very seriously,” said North American President Anton Vincent. “That commitment is evident with this year’s spirited campaign that brings the fun of our brands, safety for communities, and the first-ever trick-or-treating digital experience to thousands.”