Eid Al Fitr is a time for togetherness, gratitude and generosity – and shopping. One study predicts that UAE residents will spend 39 per cent more money on Eid Al Fitr gifts this year, compared to 2022. Meanwhile, research by IPSOS found that 78 per cent of TikTok users plan to buy gifts for their loved ones during Eid.
It is clear that the occasion presents a lucrative opportunity to tap into the Eid spirit and achieve a spike in sales. And with digital platforms, brands have the ability to speak to a hyper-engaged community of shoppers and drive products off shelves this Eid.
The Paradox of Belonging
However, with thousands of brands trying to belong to the Eid moment, everyone ends up showing up in the same way. This is what the paradox of belonging is all about. In the quest to belong, brands end up losing their true essence, overshadowed by the superficial scenarios and typical visuals associated with the moment. How many times have you seen an Eid ad featuring large family gatherings, brightly wrapped gift boxes, or colourful lanterns?
As a result of the drive to belong, brands can end up lost, drowning in an overcrowded sea of sameness.
So how can brands retain their uniqueness within a shared, overcrowded moment? How can you be part of the moment with everyone, yet remain true to your brand and stand out?
To do so, brands must embrace the multi-faceted nature of the moment – the endless possibilities through which it can be enjoyed, the diverse faces and voices that bring it to life, and the many communities it can be expressed through.
Brands need to remember that Eid tells the story of a special time. When people come together, no matter their background, interests, age or life stage. Whether they are virtually watching the Eid prayers in Mecca or walking through a bazaar in Cairo, people rejoice in the togetherness, connection and festivity brought about by the occasion.
In this context, communities engage with content genres that speak to them and to their interests, fueling the growth of every content category across the board. From entertainment to food, beauty and beyond, every single one of these categories sees a notable increase in consumption during Eid.
Therefore, throughout the year, but in Eid and Ramadan especially, we see users gathering around communities and subcultures that share unique passions, values, interests and ideas. No matter how mainstream or how niche, there’s a community for everyone.
And these communities lend themselves to a great diversity of moments. For example, on #FoodTok, food moments are not only for mom, but for the whole family; #Shopping is not just a supermarket errand, but a fun unboxing experience to share with others (think #TikTokMadeMeBuyIt); and #Entertainment is not just for TV stars, as everyone can be the star of their own video.
It is through tapping into those communities and moments that brands can build differentiated relevance – or in other words, value.
The 4 C’s
To understand what this looks like in practice, we need to zero in on the four key C’s – content, creators, communities, and consumers – that bring differentiated relevance to life.
Brands can belong differently by staying true to their unique voice and image – but re-imagining them through platform-native styles and formats.
By marrying brand elements with creative features, popular sounds and special lingo, marketers can craft content that seamlessly blends into users’ edutainment time, while maintaining the spirit of the brand.
By partnering with Creators, who bring a unique storytelling ability, authentic voice, and intimate knowledge of the latest trends, brands can also belong differently.
And in Eid, the relatability and authenticity of these characters go a long way, as users look to them for everything from recipes to unboxing videos to comedy skits.
Communities are the core element that makes TikTok as hyper-participatory as it is, and from #FoodTok to #GamerTok, to everything in between, there isn’t a better time to harness the power of communities and subcultures than Eid – the holiday that brings together millions of people across the world.
And finally, the consumer is at the heart of it all. With the evolution of content and the digital landscape, we now see consumers who actively participate in creating and engaging with brand content that resonates with them.
The bottom line
Eid Al Fitr represents an unmissable opportunity for brands to anchor themselves in a cherished moment, yet thrive in limitless opportunities for differentiation. By strategically leveraging content, creators, communities, and consumers on the most diverse and inclusive platform yet, brands can #BelongDifferently this Eid, breaking through the noise to build genuine connections and boost sales.
Jochen Bischoff is a head of consumer business partnerships MENA – global business solutions at TikTok.
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