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Understanding consumer behaviour and trends during Ramadan for digital marketing

Just like with any other festive season, it is essential to understand consumer behaviour and trends during the holy month of Ramadan for effective digital marketing strategies.

According to a 2016-17 research, 53% of all customers in the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Egypt reportedly increased their overall spending during Ramadan Ramadan offers three key windows of opportunity: Before Ramadan, During Ramadan and around Eid al-Fitr YouTube studies in Saudi Arabia report an increase in viewership by 6% in daily watch time during Ramadan, while TV recorded an overall drop by 37% in daily watch time

Article by Scarlet Media

During Ramadan consumers typically spend more that relates both for B2C and B2B products and services. According to a 2016-17 research, 53% of all customers in the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Egypt reportedly increased their overall spending during the period.

Traditionally, brands would push TV advertising heavily during Ramadan, but the evolution of online advertising has disrupted this pattern. Consumer behavior shifts have led to a significant increase in time spent online.

Ramadan offers three key windows of opportunity: Before Ramadan, During Ramadan and around Eid al-Fitr. Following are examples of brands that have successfully seized the Ramadan opportunity on digital channels.

Before Ramadan

In the period before Ramadan, many consumers are searching for deals and offers that brands are running especially for the holy month. Search ads, bumper ads (five second video teaser campaigns) and social engagement ads are effective formats for promoting upcoming Ramadan offers. Al Futtaim Motors’ UAE Camry campaign offers a good example for this.

During Ramadan

Consumers watch a wide range of content during Ramadan, especially around entertainment, food and lifestyle. Moreover, working hours are shorter during Ramadan, so users can spend more time online watching videos. YouTube studies in Saudi Arabia report an increase in viewership by 6% in daily watch time, while TV experiences recorded an overall drop, by 37% in daily watch time.  

Instead of placing increased focus on brand promotion, it is more important to focus on providing relevant information that adds value, for instance of recipes and culinary skills from FMCGs.

For example, Al Marai’s video "أعمالكم من صيامكم achieved more than 9 million views via focusing more on the themes of the holy month than individual products,

Eid al-Fitr

As Ramadan winds down and Eid al-Fitr approaches, the most successful digital marketing formats are mastheads/engagement ads (to celebrate Eid) and search ads aimed at consumers looking for gifts. In particular, Google data shows a peak in search interest in perfume and celebratory clothes for the holiday – a clear reflection of consumer needs during the festive period.