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Ramadan Advertising Guide: Crafting Effective Ramadan Ads to Reach Muslim Consumers

Published: 1 January 2024

Updated: 29 January 2024

Ramadan Advertising Guide: Crafting Effective Ramadan Ads to Reach Muslim Consumers

Ramadan is one of the most important months in the Islamic calendar. 1.9 billion Muslims worldwide will honor Ramadan. It’s a time for fasting, reflection, and an opportunity to connect with their loved ones. With 86% of Muslim consumers thinking Ramadan is the ideal time to find the best deals and 96% of people considering Ramadan the most awaited season of the year, businesses have an unmissable opportunity to, from one side, offer people value and, from another, drive sales during this festive season. According to Meta, 72% of shoppers say they often explore different product categories during Ramadan and Eid more than they do during the rest of the year.  But how to attract this audience? How to adjust advertising tactics effectively? In this article, we will guide you on how to prepare your Ramadan advertising strategy in the best way.

Table of Contents:

  1. When Does Ramadan Start in 2024?
  2. Ramadan Advertising Trends
  3. Social Media Usage During Ramadan
  4. Shopping Behavior During Ramadan
  5. Key Factors Influencing Ramadan Shopping Behavior
  6. 8 Ramadan Audiences Every Marketer Should Know
  7. Ramadan Advertising Strategies
  8. Ramadan Advertising Tactics
  9. Ramadan Symbols for Advertising Campaigns
  10. Ramadan Campaigns To Be Inspired
  11. Measuring the Success of Ramadan Campaigns
  12. Boost Your Sales During Ramadan

When Does Ramadan Start in 2024?

This year, Ramadan is expected to begin at sundown on Sunday, March 10, following the sighting of the crescent moon over Mecca, and end at sundown on Tuesday, April 9, with the joyous festivities marking the end of Ramadan, Eid al-Fitr. Muslims worldwide will observe the holy month through fasting and spiritual reflection for 30 days.

the dates of Ramadan in 2024

Almanac: Ramadan 2024

Ramadan Advertising Trends

Staying ahead of the curve is important to serve your audience during this special time of the year. By understanding the trends, you’ll be able to launch Ramadan advertising campaigns that resonate with consumers and help them connect with their faith in new and meaningful ways.

Ramadan advertising statistics

TGM: Global Ramadan insights 2023

  • Personalization. Personalized advertising experiences play a key role during Ramadan. 82% of Muslim consumers believe brands should display religious awareness when marketing products to them. Use data and targeting options to deliver relevant ads to specific segments of the Muslim consumer base. Tailor content recommendations, product suggestions, and ad experiences to individual preferences and Ramadan-specific behavior. By demonstrating a genuine understanding of their needs and aspirations, businesses can build deeper relationships with Muslim consumers.
  • Highlighting product sustainability. In recent decades, consumer consciousness regarding product sustainability has surged significantly. More shoppers are exhibiting heightened mindfulness in their purchasing behaviors, frequently opting for healthier products. A staggering 83% of Muslim consumers express a preference for retailers or brands that provide environmentally friendly choices. It’s imperative for businesses to factor this trend into their advertising strategies, emphasizing sustainability.
  • Mobile-friendly advertising. During Ramadan, 73% of Muslim consumers use smartphones over other devices to shop online, and 64% browse through social media apps. Businesses should consider creating mobile-friendly ads and content that users on the go can easily consume.
  • Video content. Video advertising, including short videos, live streams, and YouTube ads, has gained popularity, which makes it a powerful tool for Ramadan advertising. Watching online cooking clips and gift ideas is getting higher, with 78% of Muslim consumers.  Businesses can create engaging video ads, showcase products in action, or offer glimpses into their brand’s values. Consider the power of live streaming to host cooking demonstrations, product launches, or Q&A sessions with influential figures, fostering a sense of community and real-time connection.

Social Media Usage During Ramadan

Over 90% of Muslims use social media during Ramadan, with Facebook and WhatsApp being the most popular platforms. A recent study by Arab News found that social media usage in Saudi Arabia increases by 30% during Ramadan, with the average person spending eight hours daily on various platforms. Based on TGM Research, 81% of Muslim consumers will be using their mobile devices, followed closely by using social media (74%), messaging apps (70%), and watching videos online (64%).  The most popular social media platforms during Ramadan are WhatsApp, YouTube, and Facebook. 

Trends in social media advertising in Ramadan

Statista: Social media usage during Ramadan

This month’s social media usage has increased overall. People are more likely to be on social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter during daylight hours when they are not working or sleeping. Twitter reports that 83% of consumers are open to trying new brands and products during Ramadan.

Based on TGM Research, the use of social media during Ramadan mostly concentrates on learning new things and sending greetings. Staying connected through social media is a top priority during Ramadan. 74% of Muslim consumers consider social media as an essential resource for Ramadan season shopping.

Using social media in Ramadan

TGM: Global Ramadan insights 2023

Shopping Behavior During Ramadan

Retailers scramble to adjust their strategies to attract Muslim consumers. SpringerLink research shows a substantial purchase increase among Muslim consumers during Ramadan (40.6% ) and Eid (76.3%). These results underscore boosted demand early in and during Ramadan and leave businesses with an opportunity to tap into the lucrative Muslim market.

Ramadan spending statistics by year

Google: Ramadan 2023

How much do people spend during Ramadan, and where do they spend their money? Ramadan online spending in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region climbed steadily in 2022, reaching 6.2 billion USD. This trend continued in 2023, with spending increasing by 9%. According to a survey by Google, eCommerce sales increased by 61% during Ramadan. This sustained rise highlights the significant role of eCommerce during this period. 

Ramadan spending statistics by year

Statista: Online consumer spending during Ramadan

The lifestyle of Muslim consumers alters during Ramadan. We can see changing behavior before, during, and after Ramadan. Marketers can use this behavior by crafting targeted e-commerce advertising campaigns to drive sales and revenue during this period. During the holy month, around two-thirds of consumers in Saudi Arabia encounter issues while shopping online, particularly with aspects of the online shopping experience. That’s why it’s important to get equipped and work out a detailed plan for each Ramadan phase. There are four phases every marketer should keep in mind in planning their campaigns:

4 stages of Ramadan behavior

Google: The 4 behavioral phases of Ramadan 

  • Phase 1: Pre-Ramadan (Two weeks before Ramadan)

According to Google research, one week before Ramadan, grocery shopping and delivery searches are at their peak. Prayer search queries reach an annual perk right before the holy month. YouTube content creators witness an annual spike in views showing grocery shopping and decorating journeys ahead of the season. Google highlights a 164% growth during this season for small kitchen appliance reviews on YouTube and a 50% rise in searches across the region for Ramadan decorations. As well as colorful Ramadan fashion is a rising trend reflected in a 72% increase in fashion content on YouTube.

  • Phase 2: Weeks 1-2 (Ramadan)

Ramadan is in full swing, and the shopping boom is already here. Searches for “religious app downloads” have skyrocketed by 1860% year-on-year since 2020. Meanwhile, “donations and charitable giving” hit record levels on Google Search and YouTube last year. Search queries for “Ramadan recipes” like lentil soup peak during the first two weeks. Specifically, men’s interest in food grows by 70% vs. 44% for women during Ramadan. According to Google research, food enthusiasts in the MENA region drove a 125% year-on-year increase in food-related searches during Ramadan. This resulted in a 23% year-on-year boost in the usage of grocery delivery apps in the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia during the first week of the holy month. Dessert recipe searches on YouTube grow twice as fast as cooking recipes during Ramadan. The quantity of beauty content on YouTube peaks during Ramadan (but with a clear focus on the season). 

  • Phase 3: Weeks 3-4 (Final two weeks of Ramadan)

This is a period of anticipation of Eid festivities with its gifts and glamor. We can see a shift to Eid-specific ads and offerings. Google research shows a 20% increase in shaving and grooming for men. There is a shift from healthy skin care to festive hair care and makeup tips. At this stage, we can witness a lot of beauty tutorials for the perfect “Eid look.” Media companies upload more entertainment content during Ramadan. We see a notable increase in entertainment-related search results compared to the previous years. We see a 37% year-on-year rise in downloads of entertainment apps across different platforms. More people start visiting shopping centers and searching for gifts. We can also see a significant shift in food. If the first two weeks are about cooking at home, the last two are about eating out. Brands can consider it and provide enough information when searched, including cruising types, opening hours, lunchtime, etc. According to Google research, there is a 200% increase in searches for the pilgrimage and Umrah. People want to know general information about Umrah, plan for a trip to Mecca, or look into travel logistics.

  • Phase 4: Post-Ramadan (Eid)

The final stage, called Eid, is a Ramadan of its own in terms of excitement and intensity. It’s time to return to old habits. There is a peak in restaurant visits as people start going out again. Consumers start to look for hotels, holidays, and flights to take advantage of summer travel and last-minute bookings. We can see a rise in searches and online shopping for gifts during Eid. 

Key Factors Influencing Ramadan Shopping Behavior

What are the major factors influencing shopping behavior during Ramadan? What can digital marketers do to take advantage of them? Based on VIDEN’s experience, we recommend to consider three key factors when developing your Ramadan digital advertising strategy:

  • Timing

Based on TGM Research, the preparation begins 3-4 weeks before Ramadan. Offer discounts and promotions early in the month before people start breaking their fasts each day. This will give them something to look forward to as they abstain from shopping during the day.

  • Content 

Ensure that your content is relevant and useful to your target audience. Keep it informative and avoid being too salesy. Remember, people are looking for helpful information during Ramadan, not hard sells.

  • Respect 

This should go without saying, but it’s important to remember that not everyone celebrates Ramadan. Be sensitive in your messaging, and ensure that you do not alienate those who don’t observe the holiday.

8 Ramadan Audiences Every Marketer Should Know

We are convinced that understanding the different types of audiences that will be celebrating Ramadan is important for marketers to make your advertising effective. By understanding the needs and motivations of each group, you’ll be better equipped to create Ramadan creative ads that resonate with them and drive results for your business.

  1. Families. This audience is focused on spending quality time together and may be more likely to engage in offline activities such as visiting relatives or going on vacation. Additionally, as many Muslims abstain from eating or drinking during daylight hours, marketers should avoid running ads featuring food or beverage products.
  2. Young Adults. This group is more likely to be engaged with their faith during Ramadan and may be interested in content that deals with religion, spirituality, or personal growth. They may also be open to participating in offline activities such as visiting mosques or attending religious lectures.
  3. Working Professionals. Due to work commitments, this audience may have less time for religious observances during Ramadan. As such, they may appreciate content that can help them balance their responsibilities while maintaining their spiritual practice. Additionally, this group may be interested in learning about how to integrate Islamic values into their work lives.
  4. Students. Students may have more free time during Ramadan than other audiences, making them prime targets for brands promoting leisure activities or products. Additionally, this group may be interested in content related to personal development or exploring their faith during this period of introspection.
  5. Seniors. Older Muslims may appreciate content that is respectful of their age and religious beliefs. When marketing to this group, it’s important to focus on how your product or service can help them make the most out of the holy month. For example, if you’re selling food products, you could create ads featuring traditional recipes passed down from generation to generation. Or, if you’re selling beauty products, you could focus on natural ingredients that are gentle on the skin (since many elders have sensitive skin). The key is to show how your product or service can add value to their lives without being too intrusive or disruptive.
  6. Recent adherents of Islam. Muslims who are new to the faith may not be as familiar with Ramadan customs and traditions. As such, they may appreciate educational and informative content about the month-long holiday and how different people worldwide observe it. Additionally, this group may be interested in learning more about what it means to be Muslim and what Islamic values they should adopt into their own lives.
  7. Non-Muslims observing Ramadan. While the vast majority of Muslims observing Ramadan are from Islamic countries, there is a growing number of non-Muslims – including people from other faiths as well as atheists – who are choosing to fast during this month out of solidarity with Muslim friends and loved ones or simply out of curiosity about the Islamic faith. This audience may be interested in interfaith dialogue or articles explaining Ramadan’s basics for those unfamiliar with the holiday.
  8. The “Spiritual Seekers”. For many Muslims, Ramadan is a time to get closer to God and connect with their spirituality. Brands catering to this audience should focus on creating faith-based content and promoting charitable initiatives.

Ramadan Advertising Strategies

Ramadan presents a unique opportunity for businesses to connect with their Muslim audience and increase their brand visibility. Here are some Ramadan promotion strategies that businesses can use to engage with their audience during this time effectively:

  1. Create Ramadan-themed campaigns. Businesses can create campaigns incorporating Ramadan themes like family, community, and charity. These campaigns can help businesses connect with their Muslim audience and show that they understand and respect their cultural traditions.
  2. Offer special promotions. Businesses can offer special promotions, discounts, or deals during Ramadan to incentivize customers to make a purchase. For example, an e-commerce store can offer free shipping or a discount on a certain product during Ramadan. These promotions can help businesses stand out from their competitors and attract more customers during the busy Ramadan season.
  3. Leverage paid media and Google Ads. Use social networks such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter to engage with your audience during Ramadan. It’s a great time for businesses to run social media and Google Ads.     

Meta statistics in Ramadan

Meta: Ramadan 2024 marketing guide

Ramadan Advertising Tactics

In 2023, people made 123 million searches related to the holy month. Google Search, with 74% of shoppers, and YouTube, with 52%, are the top touchpoints consumers in Saudi use to research products during Ramadan.

Points of contact with customers during Ramadan

Google: Ramadan 2023

Ramadan advertising requires businesses to be strategic in their approach, as the competition for consumers’ attention is high. Here are some Ramadan advertising tactics that businesses can use to stand out from the crowd:

  • Google Ads. Google Ads services effectively allow businesses to reach their Muslim audience during Ramadan. Businesses can create ads that appear when users search for keywords related to Ramadan or Islamic culture. They can also target users based on their geographic location, language, and interests. Expand your reach by using broad match keywords alongside your generic terms to attract a wider audience and boost conversions on Google Search. Partnering with Smart Bidding can enhance performance by helping you better understand users’ search intent and reach new audiences effectively. Increase visibility with YouTube’s cost-per-hour masthead option. This feature allows brands to dominate prime placements across all devices, ensuring a 100% share of voice during crucial times like suhoor (the pre-dawn meal) and iftar (the evening meal). If you’re currently running sales or discount campaigns and aiming to maximize your return on investment, consider leveraging AI-powered Performance Max. This tool can significantly increase conversions across Google Ads inventory. Make meaningful connections with consumers by showcasing your content at the most impactful times. 
  • Social media ads. Social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter offer powerful advertising options that businesses can use to reach their Muslim audience during Ramadan. Businesses can create ads that incorporate Ramadan themes or messaging and target their audience based on their demographic information and interests.
  • Retargeting ads. Retargeting ads are a powerful way for businesses to reach users who have previously interacted with their brand. During Ramadan, businesses can use retargeting ads to show ads to users who have visited their website or social media page but have not made a purchase. These ads can feature Ramadan-themed messaging or promotions to incentivize the user to make a purchase.

By incorporating these online advertising techniques into their Ramadan advertising strategy, businesses can effectively reach their Muslim audience and increase brand visibility and revenue during the busy Ramadan season.

Ramadan Symbols for Advertising Campaigns

Ramadan symbols are to be used in advertising to connect with customers and capture the spirit of Ramadan. Many Ramadan advertisements feature symbols such as crescent moons and stars, Ramadan lamps, dates, and mosques. Let’s look at some of them that you can use for future Ramadan ads.

 

Ramadan lamps are often used to signify lights of joy, hope, and blessings during Ramadan. Crescent moons and stars symbolize the beginning of Ramadan and can be seen in Ramadan decorations, artwork, and adverts. Dates are one of the most commonly used Ramadan symbols, a traditional Ramadan food staple eaten after breaking the fast during Ramadan. Mosques also feature prominently in Ramadan advertisements to create an atmosphere conducive to the Ramadan spirit. These symbols create a visual connection with viewers and can help to evoke Ramadan-related emotions such as joy, hope, and blessings.

By using Ramadan symbols that resonate with their customers, marketers can ensure that their Ramadan campaigns are successful and help to create a strong bond between the brand and its audience.

Ramadan Campaigns To Be Inspired

  • KitKat created a unique version of its chocolate bar crafted specifically for Ramadan to engage with a community whose festivities are frequently disregarded by major brands. The bar was divided into 30 pieces, corresponding to each day of Ramadan, and further segmented into three parts representing the three Ashras of Ramadan: Rehmah (mercy), Maghfirah (forgiveness), and Nijat (safety).
  • The ¾ Pizza Box’ from Pizza2Go. Food waste is one of the talking points during Ramadan, with about 25% wasted food. This issue prompted Emirates Red Crescent and Pizza2Go to launch their campaign to tackle food waste. Pizza2Go introduced a ¾ version of their classic pizzas, which automatically helped consumers cut down on natural Iftar waste by 25%.
  • Accenture Middle East. Accenture’s idea was to release over 75 unique NFTs crafted by a team of 10 designers from Fjord, part of Accenture Interactive based in Dubai and Riyadh. By showcasing generosity, technology, and human ingenuity, Accenture seeks to leverage change and generate value that can make a positive difference in societies, industries, and the world, all while honoring the spirit of the holy month of Ramadan.

Measuring the Success of Ramadan Campaigns

During Ramadan, capturing hearts and minds takes more than just a catchy jingle. Measuring the success of your campaigns goes beyond traditional metrics. It’s about understanding intent, engagement, and the deeper connection you’ve made with your audience.

Imagine this: Your ad featuring a family breaking their fast together triggers an increase in social media mentions of shared memories and gratitude. You see a spike in website traffic from users exploring recipes for Iftar, and conversions skyrocket as families stock up on groceries mentioned in the ad.

At VIDEN, our GA4 and GTM experts are equipped to track every touchpoint in your Ramadan promotion journey. Our digital analytics team can delve deep into data, uncovering hidden insights about audience behavior and emotional connection. Let us show you the true impact of your campaigns, beyond just clicks and conversions, and help you build lasting relationships with your customers this Ramadan.

Boost Your Sales During Ramadan

Ramadan is a major event in the Muslim calendar, and it presents a unique opportunity for brands to market to Muslim consumers. Don’t miss your chance to boost sales and increase revenue by tailoring your advertising strategy accordingly. Our marketing experts are eager to help you create successful ad campaigns. Now it’s the perfect time to start your Ramadan ads! Contact VIDEN for a free consultation.

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