WITH over 60% of Malaysia’s population observes Islam, Ramadan and the festivities of Hari Raya are indeed a very special occasion for the country.
However, the pandemic has changed the way how Ramadan and Hari Raya are celebrated in Malaysia due the implementation of movement restriction order (MCO).
Just like last year, this year’s Ramadan has been affected by the need to slow the spread of COVID-19, affecting traditions such as Ramadan gatherings, balik kampung, entertainment, and duit raya.
According to Twitter’s new data shows that in 2020, 2021 and moving forward, Malaysians are spending more of their Ramadan on Twitter, and shifting the way that brands should think about Ramadan traditions.
With Twitter, people can find out what’s happening, and can come together, whether it be for Ramadan, or other major events. Just as it did for Ramadan 2020; Twitter will enable Malaysians to observe #RamadanDiTwitter this year, as Malaysians use the service to carry on their traditions, and create new traditions and memories even while being physically apart.
“While observations are still socially distanced this year; with #RamadanDiTwitter, Malaysians are starting their observances earlier, taking to Twitter to make up for face-to-face interactions, and making online shopping an ongoing part of their Ramadan routines,” managing director, Southeast Asia, Twitter Arvinder Gujral said.
Twitter also highlighted six key insights for brands to prepare the right strategy to connect with their audience during Ramadan (based on Ramadan 2020):
- Malaysians prepare earlier for Ramadan
For most Malaysians, Ramadan is one of the most anticipated times of the year, even during the pandemic. This was heightened during #RamadanDiRumah, when anticipation and preparation for Ramadan under the new normal increased earlier than in previous years. In 2020, Ramadan conversations increased on Twitter one month before Ramadan, with 25% growth in Tweet volume compared to 2019.
- Malaysians care about the same topics
With the growth of Ramadan conversation in 2020, Malaysians were eager to talk about a number of topics during #RamadanDiRumah. Among some of the key Ramadan topics that Malaysians gravitated towards during this time include balik kampung (+55% increase in conversations), entertainment (+38%), and food (+20%). As Malaysia prepares for Ramadan 2021, Malaysians are positive during this period, with 66% of conversations on Twitter having a positive tone.
- Social media will play a key role in Malaysians’ online Ramadan celebrations
When Malaysians can plan their online Ramadan in advance this year, people plan to use social media more to stay connected with family and friends, and it is the online activity that they’re looking forward to the most. 66% say that using social media will be their most anticipated activity during Ramadan, with 87% saying they will use social media apps more than usual as they stay connected.
- People turn to Twitter to entertain themselves at home during Ramadan
In addition to connecting with others using Twitter, people come to Twitter to find content and entertainment. During Ramadan 2020, Malaysians drove an increase in demand for content related to food & cooking (+5% over Ramadan 2019) and comedy (+2%). Religious content continued to see high demand during Ramadan 2020, with 66% of Malaysians on Twitter seeking this type of content.
- The rise of social commerce is an opportunity for brands to stay connected with their audience during Ramadan
With the shift to #RamadanDiTwitter in 2020, Malaysians shifted much of their offline activities to online. For #RamadanDiTwitter in 2021 and beyond, they plan to continue this trend, with 70% of Malaysians planning to retain online shopping for future Ramadans. Reinforcing the growth of this trend in 2020, Malaysians also Tweeted about shopping and gifting 19% more than they did the previous Ramadan.
- Malaysians are looking for brands in online conversations
Amidst the growth of this trend, Malaysians on Twitter are also looking for brands to be a part of the conversation. 81% of Malaysians say they want to hear more from brands, and 68% welcome experts’ opinions before making purchases.
“With these insights, brands can drive growth for performance, navigate the conversation, and create relevant content to reach KPIs,” Gujral added. – March 10, 2021