Unwrapping Dubai Shopping Festival: Brands' marketing magic and must-have deals

Firos BF |
It's that exciting season when shopaholics worldwide set their sights on Dubai for the upcoming Dubai Shopping Festival (DSF). In the heart of the bustling metropolis that is Dubai, where commerce and culture seamlessly intertwine, the DSF takes center stage as one of the most anticipated shopping events on the global shopping calendar.

In this two-part series, Adgully Middle East delves into the profound impact of the DSF on the marketing strategies and sales dynamics of brands. Beyond the metrics, brands unravel the arresting allure of the festival, offering a glimpse into their distinctive offerings and its commitment to sustainable practices.

In fact, the DSF isn't just an event. Known for its unique shopping experiences, DSF is a pivotal juncture that reshapes marketing landscapes and sales trajectories. Let us unravel the strategic dance between the DSF and various brands' marketing and sales blueprint. Discover how this annual spectacle influences their approach and what exclusive promotions await shoppers in the upcoming festival.

Let’s find out how the DSF has impacted brands’ marketing and sales strategy, and what special promotions or offers can shoppers expect during the upcoming festival.

Sunny Yang, General Manager at TCL MEA, is gung-ho about the DSF. She says: “We consider the Dubai Shopping Festival (DSF) as one of the biggest events for shoppers and we have always come up with our best possible offers and promotions during this time. It gives a tremendous boost to the TV sales and around 25-30 % of our Q4 sales happen during the DSF. Shoppers can expect big offers on our QLED and big-size TVs during this time.”

Shehbaz Shaikh, Chief Retail Officer, REDTAG, informs that REDTAG’s ongoing offers for Singles’ Day and Black Friday — up to 60% off, as well as an extra 60% off of the second item on the website and “Half Payback” on every AED 300 spent at the physical stores — will be repackaged for the DSF. REDTAG is an apparel and homeware label launched in 2006.

Besides discounts, he adds, the company’s strategy for DSF involves providing access to a wide array of fashion and homeware products, in line with festival-goers’ broad-based expectations.

“Due to the festival’s massive footfall, it’s a unique opportunity to engage and onboard new customers and feel the pulse of the market. As a customer-centric brand, that opportunity to engage is what we are most eagerly looking forward to.”

Richard Snowball, General Manager for Retail at Royal Furniture, is enthusiastic about the upcoming Dubai Shopping Festival.

“We are incredibly eager to showcase our products in more diverse ways across various mediums. We are preparing well in advance for marketing to position our brand as the destination for furnishing requirements, where we are adding a new set of products relevant to festive vibes. As for special promotions and offers during the upcoming festival, we have some fantastic deals lined up for our shoppers. We are offering special gift discounts of up to 75% off on a wide range of products, making it the perfect opportunity for customers to revamp their homes and indulge in some retail therapy. Additionally, we will have daily special offers, ensuring that our customers have something new and exciting to look forward to every day of the festival. These promotions and discounts will not only attract shoppers but also enhance their shopping experience with our brand during the Dubai Shopping Festival,” Snowball adds.

What’s in store?

Brands, such as TCL, have prepared a lineup of products to be launched during the DSF.

  1. TCL, says Sunny Yang, is planning to launch its premium 98-inch TV range in different categories like UHD, QD Mini LED TV during the Dubai Shopping Festival.
REDTAG’s 'Winter Moments', the seasonal specialized collection, will be the mainstay of the company’s participation at the DSF 2023, says Shehbaz Shaikh. According to him, the new Winter collection exemplifies "functional fashion", a branch that strives to balance the function of the apparel with its form — a priority for the cold season. “In 'Winter Moments', we have masterfully incorporated wintry colours like brownstone, vintage design elements, and contemporary prints, such as that of superhero characters from Disney, Marvel, and DC. Those specialized collections will be joined by year-round offerings in fashion and homeware,.” he adds.


Richard Snowball says that Royal Furniture has an exciting lineup for the Dubai Shopping Festival, featuring a wide range of new products, including dining tables, bedrooms, coffee and lamp tables, all at unbelievable prices. “Our spotlight item is the launch of a brand-new sectional sofa, along with a variety of accessories, all available at special festival prices. Royal Furniture’s exclusive offerings will surely attract shoppers and tourists seeking unique and stylish furnishing options during the festival.”

Consumer trends

In the vibrant tapestry of the DSF, retailers find themselves at the intersection of tradition and innovation. As the retail landscape continues to evolve, several key trends and consumer behaviors have surfaced, demanding the attention of savvy retailers. In essence, the DSF is not merely a marketplace; it's a dynamic arena where retailers must adapt to the nuanced rhythm of consumer preferences, seamlessly blending tradition with innovation to create an unforgettable shopping journey.

From 8th December 2023 to 14th January 2024, Dubai will become the 'shopping capital' of the world, states Bhavesh Talreja, Founder & CEO, Globale Media.

“It is one of the leading cities in the Middle East in innovation and development, and the Dubai Shopping Festival has accompanied that growth journey. The organized integration between shopping from retailers in Dubai and rejoicing experiences through multiple modes of entertainment is a key point of differentiation as no other international festival has managed to create a full integration as the DSF,” says Talreja.

According to him, the key distinctive factors of the DSF are:

  • Luxury shopping: The DSF boasts the crème de la crème of luxury brands, chic boutiques, and renowned retailers. From watches, perfumes, and electronics to home decor and gold jewellery, shoppers can shop at irresistible prices.

  • Online shopping: Using the DSF, many retailers offer online deals and promotions, allowing people to shop from the comfort of their homes.
  • Extended shopping: With night markets, longer business hours, and increased government support of DSF, shoppers can tap into the ultimate retail experience day and night.
  • Discounts: For the DSF to become a shopper's dream destination, massive discounts and promotions play a significant role in attracting shoppers all over the world.
  • Entertainment: Even though 'Shopping' is in its name itself, the festival is also marked by a range of exciting activities including live shows, celebrity performances, concerts, fireworks, street shows, and many more to entertain visitors for 38 days.
  • Family-friendly activities: Apart from the incredible deals and discounts on offer, the DSF also organizes family-friendly activities and family-themed entertainment. Some of these are film screenings, funfairs, and games for children. This encourages entire families, i.e. people of all ages, to travel to Dubai for the month-long festival.
  • Raffles and prizes: Many retailers and malls run raffle draws and prize giveaways where shoppers can win brand-new cars, gold, and millions of dirhams in cash prizes.
Sustainability

As consumers place a growing emphasis on sustainability and ethical shopping, brands are dedicated to being a trailblazer in responsible commerce, by prioritizing eco-friendly practices and technologies in both products and operations during the DSF.

  1. TCL takes great pride in its commitment to sustainability and is dedicated to integrating eco-friendly practices and technologies into both its products and operations, says Sunny Yang.
  2. “Under the global banner of the #TCLGreen campaign, we are spearheading a transformative initiative to inspire greatness and foster a more environmentally conscious planet for all. The #TCLGreen initiative has received worldwide recognition, serving as a symbol of our steadfast dedication to sustainability within local and global communities. In pursuit of these sustainability goals, we offer a range of environmentally responsible products that include the TCL Mini LED C845, the TCL FreshIN Air Conditioner, the TCL Eco Fresh Refrigerator, and our TCL Front Load Washer, which excels in providing advanced hygiene care. At TCL, we are committed to making eco-conscious choices accessible to our customers and are continuously innovating to minimize our environmental footprint across all facets of our business operations,” says Yang.
Richard Snowball adds that Royal Furniture is committed to sustainability and responsible shopping.

“A prime example is our sofa and bed collection, along with our locally manufactured mattresses. By producing these products within the UAE, we significantly reduce our carbon footprint, as we import only the raw materials needed for manufacturing. We take pride in being a "Made in UAE" product brand, contributing to a more eco-friendly approach in the region. While we don't have specific eco-friendly initiatives planned for the festival, our ongoing commitment to local production aligns with our sustainable and responsible shopping practices,” he explains.

REDTAG has launched ‘Anytime, Anywhere Exchange’ as part of its ethical and responsible retailing, says Shehbaz Shaikh.


“Under that first-of-its-kind initiative in GCC, customers can buy a product at any of our stores and return it at any other REDTAG store in the country, even after a decade, as long as it remains unused and labelled. ‘Anytime, Anywhere Exchange’ is a shining example of our convenience-led, customer-centric approach,” says Shaikh.

Photo (Ibn Bathutha Mall of Dubai) by Challiyil Eswaramangalath Pavithran Vipin