All Hallow’s Eve is nearly upon us, and like many others, I’m scrambling to come up with last-minute costume ideas for the weekend festivities. I can always pull out the old tickle trunk, replete with the bits and pieces of costumes past, but where’s the fun in that? If possible, I like to repeat as little as possible.
Instead, why not embrace my web working identity as a source of costume idea inspiration? These costumes may not be instantly recognizable by everyone, but those who do recognize them will make it all worthwhile, especially if you travel with a web-savvy crowd. Please note that any ribbing that follows is of the good-natured variety.
Idea #1: SEO Expert
This is the first thing that came to mind, and probably one of the easiest to do. It doesn’t necessarily require any special wardrobe, but dressing like an old-time traveling cough syrup salesman and giving yourself a silly name like Dr. Higgledy-Digg couldn’t hurt. Nor would printing up fake credentials, like a PhD in the field of “Findology.”
Be sure to also prepare a briefcase full of Google Search screenshots, charts and graphs detailing questionable ROI numbers, and brochures extolling the virtues of affiliate marketing. While you’re at the party you’re attending, constantly spout out high visibility keywords in a random string while holding up two header tags. Whenever anyone mentions the word content, laugh derisively and let on that you’re privy to the algorithms of both Google and Bing.
Idea #2: Tech Blogger
Dress in pajamas or track pants, possibly with a housecoat, and make sure your hair is unkempt. You may or may not also abstain from brushing your teeth. Carry a laptop with you at all times — ideally a netbook — and make sure to consistently utter complaints about the signal quality, wherever you are.
Pick a pet tech, like mobile, Apple (s aapl), Microsoft (s msft), video games or whatever you can think of. Steer all conversations you have during the night towards that topic, and make ridiculous predictions about the future of said tech. Always cite “sources” for said predictions, but if anyone asks for more detail about the sources, change the topic or mumble something under your breath.
Make sure all the photos you take during the party are blurry and out of focus or of people’s cell phones and other devices instead of the people themselves, and make sure you get at least a few of your hand lovingly caressing their electronics. Sneak comedic references to “Star Wars” and “Terminator” into as many conversations as possible.
Idea #3: Social Media Maven
Wear a shirt that says “I’m Kind of a Big Deal on Twitter,” “Tweet or Die” or the name of your self-published book on how to achieve success through Twitter. Carry many copies of said book in a satchel or book bag and hand them out while winking and saying “review copy.” Every time someone wants to take your picture, try to recreate the pose from your Twitter picture. You know, the one that emphasizes your “good side.”
Throughout the night, give a preachy, self-important tip as to how to tweet successfully every five or 10 minutes. Once in a while, repeat exactly what someone else just said if you found it particularly insightful or funny. When people ask you about your credentials, start listing important people you know and have talked to once or twice, then just provide a total number of how many people you know in total.
While talking with others, mention Facebook, LinkedIn and FriendFeed, but never go further than speaking about them offhand. Make sure to tell everyone you’re available for speaking engagements.
There you have it — three easy costumes with little or no preparation required. And I suspect many of you, like myself, already have many of the necessary components on hand. Happy Halloween!
What costume are you wearing this Halloween?