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85Episodes
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Haunt Weekly is a weekly podcast about the haunted attraction industry from the smallest home haunt to the largest event haunt. We talk about management, operation, tactics and more!

Episodes

Haunting is hard. Threading the needle between scaring someone and actively traumatizing hem is a difficult task.

However, sometimes haunts can cross the line and include scares, props and scenes that do more to offend than scare. 

While haunting is an art and no haunter should feel like they're being censored, it's also important to understand that haunt is a commercial art that must be palatable to a broad audience.

With that in mind, we're starting a conversation about certain scenes and scares that may not be appropriate in a haunt or, at the very least, can have a very different meaning to some members of your audience.

It might not be a reason to change your haunt, but it is something to think about.

This Week's Episode Includes:

  1. Conference Reminders
  2. Why This Topic
  3. A Word About Haunting as Art
  4. Hanging Scenes/Nooses
  5. Voodoo Scenes
  6. Animal Abuse
  7. Poverty Porn
  8. Woman Victimization/Sexualization
  9. General Suggestions
  10. Conclusions

If you're intersted in making haunting a welcoming place for everyone, this is an episode you do not want to miss!

(Note: Our discussion about the VR controversy took place in Episodes 44 and again in Episode 59)

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This week on Haunt Weekly, it's another "4" episode meaning that it's time to do the news!

This is admittedly a slow week for haunted attraction news but there are still a few stories of serious import including the purchase of a major haunt conference and the merger of two major costume companies.

Beyond that, we have a bill that was tanked by the inclusion of haunted attractions and an exciting new attraction in Tokyo that combines elements from both escape rooms and haunted houses.

This Week's Episode Includes:

  1. Conference Reminders
  2. Urban Expositions Purchases HAuNTcon
  3. Rubie's Purchases BuySeasons
  4. Disneyland Changes Pirates of the Carribean Ride
  5. Carnival Cruise Line Offering Halloween Events
  6. Haunted Attraction Amendment Sinks Agritourism Bill
  7. New Haunted Hayride to Open in Ohio
  8. Tokyo Attraction Combines Escape Games and Haunted Houses
  9. Donate to the Don't Be a Monster Auction
  10. Shout Out to Local Haunter in a New Movie

All of that makes this one episode you do not want to miss!

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Previously, on Haunt Weekly, we looked at haunt marketing and the questions that you need to answer with every single piece of marketing you put out. This week, we're getting a bit more holistic and looking at haunt branding. 

This week's episode is a whirlwind tour through the basics of haunt branding including what a brand is, how you develop a brand and how you expand it so that you can use it on other projects. As with the marketing talk, a lot of this can apply to any business, but we're focusing on haunts and how these principles apply to our industry.

This Week's Episode Includes:

  1. Intro
  2. Conference Reminders
  3. What is Branding
  4. The 10 Parts of a brand (Link)
  5. Branding Through the Entire Customer Experience
  6. The Questions To Answer About Your Brand
  7. Bringing it Together

All in all, if you have a haunt, work for one or just case about branding, this is an episode you do not want to miss.

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We've been spending a lot of time on haunted attraction websites and haunted attraction conference websites lately. What have we learned? That there is a lot of basic information missing from them.

To that end, we've decided to do a little bit of marketing 101 and discuss the six questions that every piece of marketing you put out must answer in order to be successful.

The questions themselves aren't that difficult but they ARE crucial and failure to answer them will hurt you with wasted marketing dollars or even turned away customers.

So let's take just a moment, study what your marketing must include and how you can answer those questions well for your haunted attration.

This Week's Episode Includes:

  1. Conference Reminders
  2. The Six Questions Your Haunt Marketing Must Answer
  3. How to Answer Each of Those Questions
  4. Bonus Suggestions on How to Trigger an Immediate Sale
  5. Tying it All Together

If you are in any way responsible for your haunted attraction marketing, this is one episoder you do NOT want to miss!

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Making a good escape room is tough. It requires days of planning, countless hours of beta testing and an endless string of adjustments and tweaks.

And we don't have that kind of time, knowledge or expertise.

However, we are avid players of escape games and, if you want to know how to make your escape game really crappy, we can tell you that real easy. We didn't even have to research how to do that.

So, on that note, here's our basic tips for making your escape room as terrible as possible including how to frustrate your customers before they even arrive and how to make sure the game itself is nothing but a ball of frustration. 

Obviously... don't do this...

This Week's Episode Includes:

  1. Introduction
  2. Conference Reminders
  3. 7 Ways to Make a Terrible Escape Game (Plus One Bonus)
  4. A Few Things Don't Matter (As Much)
  5. Conclusions

All in all, if you're looking to create an escape room, this is customer perspective you probably don't want to miss!

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This week on Haunt Weekly it's another episode divisible by four so that means we are doing the news!

And it's a surprisingly busy week for news as theme parks seem to be picking up the slack from the dead part of the year. We have news of several parks either opening or renovating haunted attractions bringing more spooks into the summer months.

We've also got updates on Netherworld, Midwest Haunters Convention and much, much more so strap in and let's discuss what's going on in the industry.

This Week's Episode Includes:

  1. Conference Reminders 
  2. Medwest Haunters Convention Held This Week
  3. Netherwold Officials Confirms Its Move
  4. Universal Studios Announces Haunt Based on The Shining
  5. Lagoon Theme Park Renovates Is Dark Ride
  6. Haunted Mine Drop Ride Being Installed at Glenwood Caverns
  7. New Haunted Attraction to Open at Cavendish Beach Adventure Zone
  8. WWE Rumored to Be Working On Theme Park with Haunted Attraction
  9. Texas Chainsaw Escape Room Heads to Clear Lake (Correction: We said Clear Lake was the setting for Friday the 13th, it was obviously Crystal Lake. We clearly had Crystal on the brain).
  10. Spookers Promo Video Goes Viral

All in all, this is one jam-packed episode that you do not want to miss!

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Not many podcast episodes start with a bit of house cleaning but this one certainly does.

While doing some sprucing up ahead of a family visit, Crystal found a time capsule in an old box, a 2010 edition of Haunted Attraction Magazine, issue #53 to be exact.

So we decided to take a look at the magazine and do something we probably didn't do when we got it: Read it cover to cover.

What we found was an interesting look back at the industry but one that was surprisingly relevant and topical today 

So take a trip down memory lane with us as we go through an industry magazine that's a bit over seven years old!

This week's episode includes:

  1. Conference Reminders
  2. The Great Haunt Tour 2009
  3. Profile Piece on the ScareHouse
  4. Other Articles
  5. Advertisement Rundown
  6. Final Thoughts

All in all, this magazine is an interesting take on the industry as it was and an episode that you dont want to miss!

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This week on Haunt Weekly we have a real treast for you as we sit down with Brooke Englehart of Svenpuss Productions

Based in Chicago, Svenpuss Productions is a traveling haunter troupe that also specializes in character designs, costumes and accessories. Whether you need line actors, costumes for said actors or a bulk costume order for your haunt, they have your back.

Brooke herself is one of the best-known haunt character designers, having won multiple awards with her conjoined twin costume and other character designs.

So we are truly honored to have her sit down with us for the hour go through her history in haunting, how her business works and some great tips for creacting characters in your own attraction. 

All in all, this is an episode you do NOT want to miss. 

But, when you're done here, be sure to follow Svenpuss on Facebook and Twitter.

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The number one reason that haunts don't make it past the concept stage is funding. 

However, as haunts get more expensive to open and remain high-risk traditiional sources to raise capital are being closed off. Banks, investors and self-funding are getting harder and harder to do.

In response to that, some haunts are turning into a more tech-savvy means of getting off of the ground: Crowdfunding.

So, in this episode, we take a look at crowdfunding, what it means, whether its right for haunts and offer some advice on making it work.

This week's episode includes:

  1. Conference Reminders
  2. What is Crowdfunding?
  3. Why Choose Crowdfunding?
  4. The Risks of Crowdfunding
  5. Where to Crodwfund? (Kickstarter and IndieGoGo)
  6. Suggestions and Tips for Crowdfunding
  7. Things to Consider if The Campaign Fails
  8. Final Thoughts

All in all, if you're looking to launch a haunt or to expand a current one, this is an episode you do not want to miss!

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This week on Haunt Weekly we are doing the news!

As we are wont to do on episodes diisible by four, we're bringing yout the latest and greatest of haunted attraction news and, despite being literally as far away from Halloween as you can get, we have a LOT of news to go through.

So strap yourself in and prepare to get updated on all the goings on in the haunted attraction industry!

This Week's Episode Includes:

  1. Conference Reminders
  2. Halfway to Halloween Celebrations (and Openings)
  3. Man Convicted of Rap at Delaware Haunted Attraction
  4. Erebus Opens Up Escape Room Complex
  5. New Deal May Bring Haunted Attraction to Historic Forest Hills Stadium
  6. Gorillaz' Spirit House Not Really a Haunted Attraction
  7. Another Australian Celebrity Visits Kyle and Jackie O's Haunt
  8. Haunted House-Based Game Perception Gets a Release Date
  9. Doctor Who Episode Features a Haunted House
  10. Film Based on the Winchester House Gets a Release Date
  11. WWE Holds Match in "Haunted House", Everyone Calls it Stupid
  12. Disney Rumored to Open Up Haunted Mansion Themed Resaurant
  13. Fear Factory Launches New App to Let Customers Get in On the Scares
  14. Haunt Tries Crowdfunding to Open Its Doors

All in all, this is one busy episode that you do NOT want to miss!

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