Integration of e-commerce Ramadan campaigns has seen a notable rise

Entertainment platforms have changed the concept of prime time to a 24/7 presence, says TikTok’s Aref Yehia


Ramadan offers brands an unparalleled opportunity to forge meaningful connections with their audience. This period sees TikTok users exploring a wide array of content, mirroring the diverse interests within the community.

For brands that keenly understand and harness these dynamics, the potential to amplify their engagement and impact during the holy month is substantial.

The journey towards Ramadan begins well in advance, with users starting to seek out and interact with related content roughly 2-3 weeks before the festivities commence.

This pre-Ramadan phase is pivotal for brands aiming to capture the audience’s attention early, ensuring they remain at the forefront of consumers’ minds as the season draws near.

Initiating campaigns during this anticipatory period not only taps into the growing consumer interest but also lays a solid foundation for a successful marketing initiative.

As the month of Ramadan unfolds, TikTok becomes a hub of heightened user engagement, with audiences actively participating throughout the day. During this period, users engage with content more often – with TikTok becoming a replacement for their morning coffee and giving them that first serotonin boost, as well as being their source of support and uplifting mood during the day and during the final stretch before Iftar.

‘Prime time’ for marketers is no longer limited to the first hours after Iftar, like it was before, which made the competition for the viewers’ attention incredibly high.

It also overloaded them with information and content and generally did not help them to dive into brands’ narratives on a deeper level. Entertainment platforms like TikTok have changed the concept of prime time to a 24/7 presence, as people are using them throughout the course of the whole day.

This continuous engagement presents a golden opportunity for brands across a spectrum of industries including FMCG, fashion, travel and entertainment to creatively weave their narratives into various moments of the daily user experience.

By tailoring their campaigns to both the preparatory activities and the celebratory aspects of Ramadan, brands can fully leverage the platform’s versatility. Forward-thinking brands are broadening their strategies to encompass a variety of amusement options that extend beyond the conventional post-Iftar hours.

From intimate social gatherings and exclusive after-hours venues to captivating TV shows, the content is designed to appeal to a broad spectrum of viewers. This evolution towards an ‘entertainment on demand’ model reflects a strategic shift, acknowledging that the desire for engaging content transcends the traditional evening prime time, encouraging brands to deliver captivating experiences at any hour.

However, the Ramadan season is also characterised by intense competition for consumer attention. In this crowded space, brands are urged to distinguish themselves through the creation of versatile and compelling content.

A consistent presence on TikTok, especially when maintained over a prolonged duration, has proven to be effective in building viewer trust and loyalty.

Central to TikTok’s appeal during Ramadan is its ability to foster a sense of community among users. With its assortment of ‘Toks’ – from #FoodTok to #GamerTok, the platform provides a unique avenue for brands to authentically engage with diverse user groups.

By offering entertainment, recommendations and opportunities for social interaction, brands can significantly enrich the Ramadan experience, thereby deepening their connection with the audience.

The integration of e-commerce into Ramadan campaigns has seen a notable rise, especially in the post-pandemic era.

Brands are increasingly leveraging digital platforms not merely for advertising but also for direct sales, introducing special deals and promotions that align with the festive mood. This trend is complemented by a growing emphasis on sustainability and social responsibility, with brands aligning their Ramadan initiatives with broader social and environmental objectives.

This Ramadan, if you want to successfully plan your advertising matrix, here are a few tips:

Leverage the entire day for engagement: Move beyond the traditional prime time focus, tailoring advertising to be accessible and engaging at various times.

Be consistent: Plan for the whole period of Ramadan, starting 2-3 weeks in advance, to create meaningful storytelling that brings additional value to consumers.

Collaborate with creators wisely: The authenticity and relatability of creators are invaluable, as they guide consumers through the festive season with relevant content.

Focus on storytelling: Engage viewers with creative narratives that capture their attention and encourage deeper engagement.

Appreciate the power of communities: Understand and tap into the motivations, communities, and aesthetics that drive purchasing decisions.

Keep consumer behaviours in mind: Base strategies on real consumer behaviours and preferences, ensuring content resonates with the audience’s daily habits.

By Aref Yehia, Head of Business Partnerships for Retail & E-Commerce, Global Business Solutions, MENA, TikTok