Every year, during Ramadan, people connect with faith, family, and friends. Brands and marketers, too, are making the best use of Ramadan period to create meaningful conversations with audiences across the MENA region.
GMR picks up 3 of the latest and innovative marketing campaigns that created a buzz.
#1 Net-a-Porter teams up with designers
Net-a-Porter, for instance, has launched one of its largest Ramadan campaigns yet in the Middle East. Many regional and international designers have teamed up with Net-a-Porter in the campaign.
Middle Eastern designers, like Zuhair Murad, Elie Saab and Reem Acra, and international names like Erdem, Oscar de la Renta, Safiyaa, Marchesa Notte, Etro, Mary Katrantzou and Jenny Packham, have each exclusively created limited edition capsule collections for the high-end online retailer.
Speaking of the exclusive capsules for Ramadan, Global Buying Director at Net-a-Porter, Elizabeth von der Goltz, said: “During the past few years, our Middle Eastern customers have expressed increased interest in special pieces designed specifically for Ramadan, and our designer brands have responded with exceptional caftans, gowns and dresses tailored to the occasion. With more than 40 eveningwear pieces to choose from, we know our customer will love this exquisite collection.”
#2 L’Oreal’s focus on tailor-made content
L’Oreal’s strategy for Ramadan focusses primarily on digital platforms.
“This Ramadan we are taking it to a completely new level where we are creating tailor-made content that targets different consumer interests on YouTube,” says Sanaa Bougazzoul, Chief Marketing Officer, L’Oréal Middle East.
“YouTube is a perfect platform for conversations around DIY and we observed that there is a large base of the audience that are interested in beauty and& haircare, more so we also noticed a rise of queries related to food recipes and cooking on YouTube. Based on these insights we are launching a web-series by Garnier, a brand that is known for its naturality in its products,” she adds.
“Another initiative we are launching is a makeup web series, a Ramadan special edition (videos and articles on weekly basis). The content created is based on what women search for in terms of makeup needs and looks during Ramadan, e.g. looks for Suhoor gatherings,” she maintains.
#3 TAG Heuer’s “Museum in Motion”
In April this year, before the start of the Ramadan, TAG Heuer presented the carefully curated “Museum in Motion” — a global exhibition, which came to Dubai for the last two weeks of April, and highlighted heritage timepieces from the brand’s museum at La Chaux-de-Fonds.
“Museum in Motion” marks the first time these watches have left the museum and the first time the pieces have been exhibited as a group. Each exhibition is built exclusively around a specific and outstanding Carrera chronograph to celebrate the 55th anniversary of the launch of TAG Heuer’s iconic Carrera collection. “Museum in Motion” also launched the Monaco Gulf Calibre 11 Special Edition timepiece for the first time in the UAE.
Interview: ‘This Ramadan we are taking campaigns to a completely new level’
Sanaa Bougazzoul, Chief Marketing Officer, L’Oréal Middle East, shares the secrets of the brand’s marketing strategy during the holy month: What lies at the core of L’Oréal Middle East’s marketing strategy during Ramadan? Ramadan is the most competitive time for advertisers in this region, with brands competing over TV airtime, which is primarily dominated by food and household items. Reaching out to consumers and cutting through the clutter is the challenge that marketers face today. One of the most interesting aspects of Ramadan is how people spend their time during the holy month. School and work schedules change, sleep timings are altered, and there’s an increase in quality time spent with family and friend. With more time to spare, people spend more time in front of the screen consuming content as 53% of consumers in the UAE and Saudi Arabia spend more time on YouTube during this holy month, and in 2017, there was a rise of 6% in YouTube viewership in Saudi.
With mobile penetration surpassing 100% in Saudi and UAE, Facebook revealed that during Ramadan, users in the Middle East spend an average of 115 extra minutes on the social media platform. This means that during Ramadan, we have 57.6m extra hours to capture the attention of the audience.
All available data indicates that our strategy for Ramadan needs to focus primarily on digital platforms. We recognized the trend last year and challenged ourselves to run a digital-only campaign for Garnier Ultra-Doux during Ramadan
We wanted to be at the forefront of that initiative, maximizing our learning by having our first full-fledged precision advertising approach. We needed to test the full potential of reaching the right audiences, with timely and relevant content.
The Facebook-only campaign proved to be a huge success and is considered as a case of Facebook best practice (To know more: https://www.facebook.com/business/success/garnier-ultra-doux)
How do you measure the effectiveness of your campaigns during the holy month? /
Since our campaigns in Ramadan are mainly digital, we measure the impact of the campaign on our brands through conducting brand lift surveys that measures the lift in awareness and consideration on the brand.
The survey shows improvement after the campaign. To give you an example: the Facebook-only campaign done last year (mentioned in the first question) yielded great results:
– 14.3% lift in ad recall in Saudi Arabia
– 6.7% lift in ad recall in the United Arab Emirates
– 6.8% lift in brand awareness in Saudi Arabia
– 9.3% lift in brand awareness in the United Arab Emirates
– We even saw a lift in our sales: 4.95% increase in sales of Ultra-Doux in Carrefour Supermarkets in the United Arab Emirates
This Ramadan, all our campaigns will have click-to-buy feature to push sales with e-retailers or pure players. This will also allow to better measure the impact on sales.
What are the specific campaigns you’ve planned this Ramadan?
This Ramadan we are taking it to a completely new level where we are creating tailor-made content that targets different consumer interests on YouTube.
YouTube is a perfect platform for conversations around DIY and we observed that there is a large base of audience that are interested in beauty & haircare, more so we also noticed a rise of queries related to food recipes and cooking on YouTube.
Based on these insights we are launching a web-series by Garnier, a brand that is known for its naturality in its products.
The overlap in use of natural ingredients in cooking and in Garnier products has resulted in a fun, engaging and educational YouTube show that combines a celebrity chef with a celebrity beauty host challenging each other.
Using natural ingredients, the beauty host will create a cooking recipe out of natural ingredients and the chef will create beauty care routine.
Another initiative we are launching is a makeup web series, a Ramadan special edition (videos and articles on weekly basis). The content created is based on what women search for in terms of makeup needs and looks during Ramadan, e.g. looks for Suhoor gatherings.
To make the content more personalized and relevant to the consumers, we will have four different personas such as the makeup junkie, the natural makeup user, etc. and each character will portray her own adaptation of the makeup look.