The holy month of Ramadan is a time of spiritual reflection, improvement and increased devotion. It is a social season where people celebrate and connect with family and friends near and far. Ramadan is also the month during which people spend more time online.
For that reason, we partnered up with digital and social media expert: Diya Murra of The Online Project for our webinar. In the webinar, Diya provides us with in-depth insights of social media behavior in Ramadan as well as best practices for brands in the region. We summarize below the keys to running an effective Ramadan strategy on social media.
It is no secret that social media has been a key element in Ramadan habits and traditions in recent years. Last year alone, Twitter reported an increase of 18% in Tweets during the month of Ramadan. Unsurprisingly, Twitter users also consumed 17% more video content in the holy month. Ramadan also sees several common trends over the years which include:
Discounts & Promotions:
Grocery shopping and shopping for Eid are major aspects of Ramadan. For grocery shopping in specific, we see people in the Middle East often flocking to their local supermarkets and hypermarkets to secure the best deals.
According to YouGov’s Ramadan study, the top 3 most appealing offers to UAE & KSA residents included: ‘buy 1 get 1 free’, price discounts and cash-back vouchers.
60% of google searches are done on mobile in Ramadan, that’s 5% more than any other month. This does not come as a surprise, especially since the UAE has the highest mobile penetration in the world (80.6%) according to Newzoo’s Global Market Report.
TV on Social
As TV series are one of the key highlights of Ramadan, we also see that people in the region take to social media to both discuss and get updates on their favorite shows.
So how can your brand boost their Ramadan strategy and social media engagement?
With Ramadan being a key season for social media activity, we often see a saturation of brands pushing content across different channels. It is important for brands to stay active and visible on social media during this season. Below are the key tips from Diya Murra:
1. Find a theme
Identify a theme relevant to your brand and appropriate for Ramadan. Majority of your content in Ramadan should tie into your chosen theme(s). Use your brand’s theme(s) to increase your brand equity and connect to your audience on social media.
2. Set up your content calendar
Build a social media content plan inspired by your selected theme(s). Familiarize yourself and your team with Ramadan social media behaviors and build your social content plan accordingly. Implement your content plan by scheduling your social media posts across channels ahead of time.
3. Be ready to react
Keep an eye out for trends and conversations that could be related to your brand/theme in your Ramadan strategy. It is crucial to monitor social media in this period and not miss out on any opportunity to engage with your audience. Find out which topics your audience is buzzing about online and shape your relevant content accordingly.
4. Localize content
Ramadan traditions and activity may differ within the Middle East itself. It is beneficial for brands to invest in local talent that are culturally aware and savvy. Localized content is critical to connecting with your target audience. Do you know what a غبقة is?
5. Engage, engage, engage
We now know that people engage more on social media in Ramadan. This is an opportunity for your brand to make a real and nearly effortless connection with your audience – do not miss out on this! Ramping up your engagement should be a priority in your brand’s Ramadan strategy.
6. Think outside the box
Nowadays, there is more to social media than simple text and images. There are countless opportunities to create content within your Ramadan strategy that resonates with your audience. A few examples include:
- Instagram ‘swipe up’ feature on stories
- Facebook Live-posts
- Twitter connected and carousel tweets
- Snapchat geo-filters
So how can my brand stand out and cut through the Ramadan noise?
Diya puts it simply: “Since social media users consume more content in Ramadan, they are bound to suffer from ‘content fatigue’ due to the saturation taking place online. And for a brand to capture and retain the attention of their audience, one must break the threshold of noise. During peak times, promote your best content on social channels. On the other hand, during Ramadan ‘quiet times’ shift your focus to engagement on social media.”
Twitter reports that during Ramadan, 83% of consumers are open to trying new brands and products. So how is your brand celebrating this season and reaching out to your potential audience?