Ramadan: When Will Destinations, Brands Harness This Promising Marketing Window?


Ramadan is the ninth month of the Muslim calendar. It is widely considered one of the most sacred times for Muslims, The annual observance of Ramadan is regarded as one of the Five Pillars of Islam. Its duration is about thirty days, from one sighting of the crescent moon to the next.

Within this period, Muslims observe a strict fast from dawn until sunset and they are not allowed to eat or drink during daylight hours. The fast is broken at the end of each day with prayers and a festive meal called Iftar.

Iftar is a very significant aspect of Ramadan. Without Iftar and Sahur (the meal consumed early in the morning) the Ramadan fasting isn’t complete.

The Window

The 30-day Ramadan period, especially the Iftar time which is a celebration meal after sunset, and the two-day celebration (this year we had 3 days) at the end, are huge spaces or windows any ambitious destination or visionary marketer can exploit. It equally offers a multitude of opportunities for brands to leverage. Just like Christmas, Ramadan comes once a year but it lasts for an entire month. While brands have continuously exploited the Christmas and New Year marketing window quite effectively, the huge opportunity in Ramadan literarily begs for exploitation every year.

Even the pedestrian communication approach by marketers wishing their Muslim customers a happy and blessed Ramadan at the beginning and the end of the season, was quite negligible or virtually non-existent this year. What could be behind this lingering trend? Are Brands and Cities not oblivious to these opportunities?

The Challenge

Agreeing that campaigns have been quite dull this period, Emma Young, CEO of Research Links, a marketing research company feels it is a combination of diverse factors. In his words, ‘Brand owners are under serious pressures in the current economic situation, so they are being extremely careful to conserve as many resources as possible to avoid distractions. This was obvious even during the recent Easter period.

“They may also not be very confident in the capacity of their creative teams or agencies to adequately navigate some sharp corners on the route of religious and cultural communication, so the best option is to stay off totally, especially when it may involve worshipper that could be very passionate and stormy in their response. Sterling Bank and Peak Milk may explain better”.

Despite the suspected poor fecundity of some creative teams in the area of cultural communication, some brands took commendable steps to explore the season.

LG Electronics

LG launched its ‘Double Offer’ Ramadan campaign to inspire people to do better and make the season more meaningful. The brand has been giving exclusive rewards to those who join its Insider Community during the Ramadan season.

The General Manager of Home Appliances LG Electronics West African Operations, Brian Kang, stated that the initiative was aimed at giving back to the company’s customers.

He said, “We are thrilled to offer exclusive rewards to those who join our Insider Community, allowing them to enjoy significant savings on our premium home appliances.

Erisco Foods

Erisco Foods also Launched its Ramadan Campaign within the season. The Ramadan Special Promo which was launched in March was purportedly aimed at restoring consumer trust and neutralizing the increasing boycott threats from the eastern and Lagos consumers over the brand’s push to prosecute an online influencer for a negative online product review.

The promo published on its social media page encourages consumers to buy and get an extra carton of 20 cartons of 1.1 kg, get 1 carton free, 15 cartons of 210g SUP, get 1 carton of 210g SUP free, 15 cartons of 400g SUP, get 1 carton of 400g SUP free and 100 cartons of 400g tin, to get 1 carton of 400g in free.


Another Ramadan–friendly brand is Maltina, Nigeria’s leading malt drink brand/ The brand’s ‘Show Kindness, Share Happiness’ Ramadan campaign, has again demonstrated its commitment to sharing happiness with all consumers including the Muslim faithful. The brand hosted a select group of Muslim faithful to a special Maltina Iftar soiree on March 31, 2024.

At this year’s event, guests shared delicious Iftar meals– the evening meal that breaks the daily Ramadan fast. The atmosphere was serene as Muslim faithfuls as well as all guests made connections and had heartfelt conversations, creating lasting memories for all present. A few other brands like Indomie were all active during this Ramadan

But there are still several opportunities brands can harness in this spiritual month. As marketers are cutting down on marketing budgets and tilting their attention to brand engagement, they can run low-budget multicultural content campaigns such as recipe/cooking contests, fairs/exhibitions, quizzes, Quranic recitation competitions, and photo exhibitions that are likely to get the attention of a huge number of Muslim consumers. In many countries with a huge Muslim population, these approaches are utilized extensively.


Marketers also have the option of launching campaigns that can educate the masses, especially the Muslim folks as their concentration and level-headedness are at their peak at this period. Collaborative campaigns with local philanthropists can also help brands enhance their reputation.

In other climes. a lot of businesses connect with Muslim consumers and offer products and services tailored to their needs during this period.

One dominant sector that can effectively utilise this window is the food and beverage industry, which has traditionally been one of the most active sectors globally during Ramadan. Indeed, they can offer special Iftar menus and Ramadan-themed promotions to attract Muslim customers

Other sectors are tourism and fashion, which can unveil launches of special collections and discounts for the month of Ramadan.

There are several other ways available for brands to further connect with the Ramadan marketing window. Another way is for food brands to diversify into the growing demand for halal-certified products, particularly in the food industry. Interested brands can seek to cater to this market by offering more halal options, and promoting them during Ramadan.

Across the globe, Muslims are always very expectant and ecstatic whenever the month approaches.

Preparations and felicitations get to the climax when Muslims repaint, renovate, refurnish, and decorate their homes, and mosques, pasting different signs with inspiring messages.


Governments in the Middle East and other parts of the world singlehandedly or in partnership with corporate organisations embark on massive beautification campaigns, decorating cities and motorways with flowers, and lighting to fill the atmosphere with the scent of Ramadan.

Muslims in the Middle East, for instance, welcomed the 2024 Ramadan fast with vibrant lights, banners, and other themed decorations. For instance, authorities in Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates illuminate their cities, including public squares and bridges, Qatar, Turkiye, and Saudi Arabia are not left out in this month-long annual beautification exercise as they also lit up their cities, signaling the beginning and end of Ramadan.

These Middle East countries do similar decorations in honour of minority Christian groups and visitors during the Xmas and New Year seasons.

Even in London, the United Kingdom (UK) capital, around famous districts like Coventry Street between Piccadilly and Leicester Square, you can see colourful designs and lightning in the shape of the crescent of moon and stars, with the words “Happy Ramadan” erected to usher in the holy month.

Call To Action

Why can’t cities like Lagos, Abuja, and others that claim they have a great passion for destination branding pounce on ideas like Ramadan decorations to illuminate the streets in different colours, creating a beautiful and magical atmosphere, If state governments across the country, and the capital city of Abuja can lavishly spend resources to light up the streets during Christian celebrations and festivities why not replicate same gesture during Muslim festivals?

Lagos State, for instance, has engaged in Christmas decoration exercise for some years now, in partnership with private companies. The state beautifies and lights up strategic places, including the State House of Assembly, Government House, and other public places. It would also boost the status of the megacity as a great destination if the same can be done during Ramadan.

If a financial brand, through its CSR or branding programme, has, in the last 16 or so years, spent millions to illuminate the popular Ajose Adeogun in Victoria Island, Lagos during Christmas why can’t it embark on a similar beautification project for its teeming Muslim customers during Ramadan?.

Why can’t private organisations channel part of their branding or CSR budgets for Ramadan beautification projects, just as they do during the celebration of Christmas and New Year?

Beautification of parks and streets during Ramadan would excite everyone including Muslims, as the HOLY Prophet (SAW) was quoted to have said, “Allah is beautiful and loves beauty”. Historically, Ramadan decorations globally date back to the early days of Islam.

History books tell us that during the month of Ramadan in 362 AH, Caliph Al-Muizz Lideenillah Fatimi arrived in Cairo from Morocco. The Egyptians went out in large processions to greet him at night holding torches and decorated colorful lanterns to light the streets. These lanterns remained lit until the end of Ramadan, filling the streets with joy.

Now, if there are so many tourism, Marketing, and branding benefits, why are brands and destinations in Nigeria so conservative in exploiting the Ramadan window? It is obvious that, until brands and cities identify and utilize all the available pathways to connect with Muslim consumers during and after Ramadan, these gaps and lacunas we have experienced for many decades and their concomitant losses will stick around for a very long time.

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