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From the 13th Annual Shorty Awards

Ghostbusters The Haunted Candy Hunt

Finalist in Gamification


Popular candy maker, Ferrara, teamed up with Sony Pictures Entertainment to create an accessible and scalable way for kids and families to safely celebrate Halloween at home by putting a virtual spin on the classic neighborhood trick-or-treating experience. 

Key Campaign Objectives: 

Strategy and Execution

In collaboration with candy company Ferrara and Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, Trigger designed and built an immersive, frictionless Web AR ghost-hunting game inspired by the iconic Ghostbusters franchise called The Haunted Candy Hunt. We chose Web AR due to its unprecedented reach and accessibility on any mobile device - no app download required! Players could easily access this film-inspired augmented reality game through a simple URL. 

In-store signage with brand messaging encouraged consumers to text “GHOST” to a SMS shortcode to access the URL, an intentional solution to encourage people to activate while at-home instead of spending more time in-store due to COVID-19 considerations. Ferrara and Sony Pictures further promoted the URL across their respective social media channels. 

To play, users stun and capture AR ghosts flying around their environment using their very own virtual proton pack before time runs out. It’s a race against the clock as you try to capture Slimer and Sweeter, the Ferrara Candy Ghost, an original character that Trigger designed and created using classic Ferrara candies as inspiration including Brach’s, Trolli, SweeTARTS, & Nerds. Post gameplay, users were prompted to enter sweepstakes for a chance to win fun prizes. No tricks here, just treats! 


Adapting to the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, Ferrara and Sony Pictures came together to provide consumers with a bit of Halloween fun for the whole family with this immersive augmented reality game and prize-filled sweepstakes. 

While nothing can fully replace the customs and joy that comes with trick-or-treating on Halloween, this campaign did succeed in creating an experience for kids and families to enjoy together from the safety of their homes. Not only was it easy to access by being web-based, it also garnered extended engagement times proving consumers found the gameplay to be entertaining. 

The Haunted Candy Hunt campaign window was targeted to the few weeks leading up to and immediately following Halloween. Despite it having a limited run time in the market, this spooky, light-hearted Web AR game created positive brand awareness and consumer engagement for both Ferrara candies and Sony Pictures’ Ghostbusters franchise as evidence by the following results: 

The standout metric here is the average time spent in the experience per player. When you compare the 2.5 minutes of dwell time for The Haunted Candy Hunt experience to traditional marketing formats where brands typically compete for 3-7 seconds of a consumer's time and attention, it’s clear that ghosts weren’t the only thing this campaign captured! 


Video for Ghostbusters The Haunted Candy Hunt

Entrant Company / Organization Name

Trigger, Ferrara


Entry Credits