3 Ways to Leverage Storytelling to Get More Candy This Halloween

An interview with branding expert Zehra Raza:

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Pumpkin spice lattes are flying off the shelves and Halloween is around the corner. So to shake things up, I wanted to throw together a special mix-up. 🎃

Today’s newsletter brings you court side with a senior marketer from one of the most cherished chocolate brands in the world. 

The person who agreed to teamup? Zehra Raza, Senior Manager at Hershey’s Canada. 🍫

Menu for Today:

👀 Zehra breaks down why everyone needs to be sharing stories

🛠 3 frameworks you can steal to become a better storyteller

👟 Timely storytelling advice you should jump on  

Let’s get to it.  

JH: How does storytelling help in scaling a brand, be it personal or a company? 

ZR: For as long as we know, humans have told stories. Stories are memorable, and they create an emotional connection with the audience. 

In a world where we are exposed to thousands of pieces of content and advertisements regularly, stories can break through the noise (or concrete walls) and make you memorable. 

JH: Not everybody is a good storyteller, any tips on how to move in that direction? 

ZR: A few handy tips to consider - always have a strong introduction that catches the listener's attention (the "hook"), a body, and a conclusion. 

But a good story has something more - tension! It creates drama in a story and captures your audience's attention. 

I highly recommend individuals to consider Toastmasters International Clubs - a not-for-profit organization - that helps you become a strong speaker and storyteller.

JH: How has Hershey's leveraged Halloween stories to attract customers?

ZR: At Hershey's, we know that using relevant media is the key to storytelling. Hence, we leverage the strength of our beloved brands, coupled with the appropriate social media channels for Gen Z consumers, to truly engage them with our productions and promotions. 

Last year, in the middle of a pandemic, Hershey's created "Treat Quest", a gamified version of Trick or Treating to unlock a Halloween lens and prizes (see article HERE).

JH: Can you share a Halloween story from your life?

ZR: I love Halloween! And now that I work at Hershey's, I love it even more. There is nothing like giving delicious treats to the trick-or-treaters and seeing a big smile on their face. 

Every year, our employees, in small groups, compete to win prizes for best costume and team performance! My favourite was from a few years ago when we dressed up as “Cereal Killers” with names like Rice Kreepies and Deaddies, Reese Cuffs and more! 

JH: Special thanks to Zehra for sharing her expertise with us today!

3 Storytelling Tips (you can apply right away)

1. Make People Care About Your Story

People relate to stories when the story helps them. Before sharing your story, decide the goal you want to achieve. What feeling do you want to evoke? 

2. Leverage Selfie Content vs Finished Product Storytelling

Share your day-to-day experiences and learnings with your audience. Not after the experience is done and it’s all tied up with a bow. Talk about your wins and failures while they happen. It makes you more human.

3. Use Headlines That Hook 

Ask questions. Draw them in. Create curiosity. Make it worth their time. Highlight why they should care. Some examples: 

  1. Here’s What I Learned About Sales While Working at Walmart. 

  2. No One Teaches You How to Hire. Here’s My Biggest Mistake (and My Biggest Hiring Lesson).


Andrew Wilkinson’s marketing agency, Double Growth is looking for a CEO. Want an introduction? Email aidan@doubleup.agency and tell them Joel sent you from the newsletter. 

Or if you’re scared of cold emailing, you can apply here.  

Thanks for reading! I try hard to make it a newsletter you look forward to each week, so if you have any suggestions about content you’d like to see or ideas that sparked, let me know:

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Stay outta’ trouble and catch you next week.

✌🏻 Joel

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