On Wednesday 23rd March, 2022, Twitter and Campaign Middle East hosted the third of their exclusive four-part Spaces series on @TwitterMktgMENA. Focused on new launches during the Ramadan period, the third episode of #RamadanTalks2022 welcomed Saleh Bdeir, Senior Client Partner at Twitter MENA, Bader Al Hammad, Senior Vice President and Head of Marketing & Brand at Riyad Bank, and Tahaab Rais. Hosted by Austyn Allison, Campaign ME Senior Editor, the session explored the myriad of Twitter solutions placing brands at the centre of Ramadan conversation on Twitter.
Ramadan is a period where consumers, in general, are more open to trying new products and brands compared with other times of the year. The session revealed the findings of an insights survey that Twitter ran, where 50% of people on Twitter in Saudi, UAE and Kuwait and 60% of people in Egypt, spend more money during Ramadan. The survey also revealed a significant amount of people who are likely to explore new brands and products (41% Saudi Arabia, 42% Egypt, 53% UAE, 40% Kuwait).
With a clear interest in new products and brands, Saleh Bdeir, Senior Client Partner, Twitter MENA emphasised the benefits of launching on Twitter, noting: “The Twitter audience is extremely receptive and influential. People on Twitter want to see new launches from brands, and they are two times more likely to talk about a brand within their own connections and their circle of friends and family.”
Bader Al Hammad, SVP and Head of Marketing & Brand, Riyad Bank gave his input from a brand-side perspective, and discussed what brands want from platforms such as Twitter during Ramadan: “Brands want a unique product that is tailored – as we know, customer behaviour totally changes during Ramadan. It’s the month where all families connect and gather, so all brands want to be connected with the community.” He continued: “When Twitter launched the Pre-roll product a couple of years ago, it was a great integration between social media and TV, and it gave us the chance to reach our community in a better and more targeted way. So I think what is needed from Twitter is a unique product that can be used by brands such as Riyad Bank, specifically during the Ramadan period.”
Tahaab Rais, intervened with a slightly different perspective: “When it comes to Ramadan marketing, the power of Twitter is that it is a place where people discuss topics that they are passionate about. When brands do it well, I’ve seen real marketing success during the Holy Month, rather than brands simply using Twitter as a tool to promote a video or offer. Unfortunately, a lot of brands choose the latter approach in our part of the world. By using the power of the Twitter community there is so much more that can be done to drive conversation surrounding Ramadan and to engage audiences. Twitter has immense potential as a platform given its tool suite, and I don’t think most brands in the region make the best use of it at this time of year.”
The session also served as a reiteration of previous sessions, with guests emphasising the need to both plan and connect early, ensuring communications throughout the holy month and Eid al-Fitr. Guests noted that a combination of short and long-term approaches is required within strategies, a fact supported by Twitter data which shows that brands that connected during the surrounding days in addition to event days will see 2x more engagement, 35% higher view-through, and 3x more cost-efficiency.
Concluding the wider discussion, Saleh Bdeir, Senior Client Partner, Twitter MENA dove into the formats and customised features that Twitter offers brands for launches during Ramadan, and how to make an impact. These included leveraging premium placement such as Twitter Takeover, helping them to reach the maximum level of audience very quickly. In parallel to this approach, he recommended running video ads with a hero asset, or carousel ads if a brand aims to show multiple features of a new product, solution, or service. He emphasised and recommended this as a holistic storytelling experience for consumers.
The session ended with each of the panellists offering their top advice for brands looking to launch something new during Ramadan where Bader recommended keeping consistent and having an ‘always on’ communications strategy. Tahaab asked that brands use Twitter’s power of community to drive Ramadan’s popularity in the world versus simply making a brand popular during Ramadan. Saleh suggested that marketers understand their audience and be creative without being too complex in favour of community connection.
#RamadanTalks2022 explores how brands can connect successfully with audiences on Twitter during Ramadan. Tune in next Tuesday, 29th March at 12 pm (UAE) for the last of the four-part series to learn about Ramadan for good with Jawahar Abdelhamid, Public Policy Manager for Twitter MENA and Hani Al Zubaidi, CEO of Make-A-Wish UAE. The leaders will explore how consumer habits evolve during the Holy Month and Twitter’s role in driving philanthropy and donations.