Understanding OTT Prime Time During Ramadan
Gavin Buxton, Managing Director of Asia, Magnite
March 21, 2022 | 4 min read
As Muslims worldwide prepare for the holy month of Ramadan, brands look to tap into one of the busiest ad seasons of the year. In line with Ramadan’s spirit of giving, ad campaigns champion messages of empathy and togetherness in a bid to build rapport with consumers during a time of hope, compassion, and solidarity.
Ramadan also presents a golden opportunity for brands to reach highly engaged, addressable audiences with purchase intent. As religious communities fast during the day, increased video consumption during this time boosts OTT engagement. This coincides with a lift in purchase activity, in line with Ramadan’s season of gift-giving.
Here’s how marketers’ awareness of Ramadan can help brands reach consumers through the premium environment of OTT.
Ramadan boosts OTT engagement
Ramadan’s fasting periods, from sunrise to sunset, drive video consumption. According to a Statista survey of leading activities during Ramadan in Indonesia, 32% of respondents planned to watch movies, series or other video content during fasting times.
This boosted engagement is reflected in viewing numbers. According to Tengku Muhammad Rizaldi, Head of Sales at Emtek Digital, Vidio saw a 115% growth in daily active users and a 154% increase in viewing duration on Vidio during this festive period. Likewise, WeTV & iflix saw two times the usual engagement during Ramadan.
Interestingly, while mobile remained the main OTT viewing device, CTV viewing doubled last Ramadan according to Magnite data from Indonesian OTT publishers, where increased CTV screen consumption is being driven by more sociable family viewing on “the big screen.”
This heightened activity presents a unique opportunity to brands who want to reach addressable audiences between targeted windows.
For example, Vidio saw a viewing increase between 2-4 am before Sahur time, with viewing peaking from 7-8 pm after the break in fasting. Early morning and after breakfast are peak hours for people to engage on Vidio and this is an opportunity for brands to stay connected with consumers, added Emtek Digital’s Rizaldi.
To drive further engagement, OTT streaming platforms are now rolling out exclusive “Ramadantainment” content, creating opportunities for brands to advertise across contextually relevant environments.
Last year, Vidio’s top four original series generated more than 42 million views, with certain Korean shows offered for free during the festival.
Local original content retains the top spot throughout the Ramadan season at WeTV and iflix. Content is king and with OTT streaming services, people come for one purpose and that is to watch. Festive is a peak period for WeTV to launch religious series like Ustad Millennial during Ramadan, says WeTV’s sales head for MY & SG, Mark L. Jackson.
According to iQiyi International’s Head of Southeast Asia Advertising Sales, Elaine Tan, iQiyi saw a significant increase in video views during the Ramadan and Raya festive months in Malaysia.Aidilfitri is one of the key marketing seasons for brands to connect with new audiences, build brand love and deeper engagement. With the return of iQiyi’s number one local drama 7 Hari Mencintaiku 3 this season, coupled with fan favorites from Mainland China and rest of Asia, brands can leverage on the various sponsorship, creative premium buys and local activation opportunities available during this time to unlock greater brand affinity and impact, she added.
Ramadan lifts purchase activity
Ramadan typically sees increased purchase activity in preparation for fasting. This comes at a time when consumers typically gain greater spending power with bonus payouts in countries like Indonesia and Malaysia.
Importantly, brands looking to take advantage of this purchase intent will want to plan early. 58% of consumers say that they plan to start shopping for Ramadan 2022 a month ahead.
Ramadan also presents a peak time for brand discovery. For example, 56% of Indonesians are interested to learn about new brands while Ramadan shopping. Here, OTT ads play a key role. One in three Indonesians learns about new products and promotions for Ramadan from ads on online TV streaming platforms.
Brands leverage the power of OTT
As Ramadan captures coveted audiences over OTT, brands are taking note.
Last Ramadan, mobile telecom operator XL launched an OTT campaign that increased audience ad recall while driving purchase consideration with post-ad purchase intent to buy the “Paket Akrab” Ramadan internet packages increased by 18%, according to Magnite’s brand lift study.
Ultimately, Ramadan presents a rare chance for advertisers and brands to add incremental reach to their ad campaigns and have greater resonance with Muslim communities. To drive brand impact and see a greater return on budgets, video marketers will want to tap into the OTT opportunity this Ramadan.