Sabu Soumian on Hotpack Global's Ramadan marketing strategies

In the Middle East, Ramadan holds immense cultural and religious significance, marking a period of unity, sharing, and reflection. Hotpack Global, a leading provider of packaging solutions, acknowledges and embraces this significance by tailoring its marketing strategies to resonate with the essence of the season. Sabu Soumian, Head of Retail Operations- GCC at Hotpack Global, emphasizes the company's commitment to honouring Ramadan traditions while meeting the diverse packaging needs of its clientele. Hotpack offers special Ramadan-themed packaging solutions, including meal boxes, cups, paper bags, and stickers, designed to reflect the spirit of sharing and togetherness."We recognize the importance of aligning our products with the cultural values of Ramadan," says Sabu Soumian. "Our Ramadan-themed packaging solutions serve as symbols of cultural connection and tradition, fostering meaningful connections with our customers and communities."How does your company leverage the unique cultural and religious significance of Ramadan in the Middle East to tailor its marketing strategies for its packaging solutions?Hotpack recognizes and embraces the cultural significance of Ramadan in the Middle East. It's a period marked by sharing and coming together of communities, friends, and families. We offer special Ramadan-themed printed packaging solutions, including meal boxes, cups, paper bags, and stickers, designed to resonate with the essence of the season.We also introduced Ramadan meal and snack boxes, reflecting the spirit of sharing and unity that defines this month. These offerings are not only practical but also serve as a symbol of cultural connection and tradition. Additionally, we provide customization options for businesses seeking to align their products with the values of Ramadan, thus enhancing B2B sales opportunities.To amplify our message and engage with our audience effectively, we curate content centered around the Ramadan theme and leverage various marketing channels, including social media platforms. This ensures that our presence remains strong and resonant throughout the month, fostering meaningful connections with our customers and communities. Through these tailored strategies, we aim to honour the spirit of Ramadan while meeting the diverse packaging needs of our clientele.Can you share specific examples of successful marketing campaigns or initiatives your company has executed during the Ramadan seasons in the Middle East? How do you think these campaigns will resonate with the local audience?Our company implements a variety of marketing campaigns, both online and offline, that are strategically designed to engage with our audience and celebrate the significance of the occasion. We approach Ramadan as a phased journey, with distinct phases such as "Get ready for Ramadan" and "Ahlan Ramadan," each catering to different consumer needs and experiences. During these phases, we focus on preparing households, offering Ramadan-themed packaging solutions for businesses, and facilitating the distribution of iftar meals. We also launched a special Ramadan Iftar box which contains all the packaging needed for families to celebrate Iftar with their loved ones.We curate our communications and products to align with the cultural aspects of Ramadan, ensuring that our campaigns resonate with consumers in the Middle East. Additionally, we collaborate with top-level NGOs and government entities in the region for charity campaigns, further enhancing our outreach and impact. As a result, we have achieved significant success for our Ramadan campaigns, particularly in the retail segment, as demand for our products tends to peak during this time.What consumer insights or market research does your company rely on to inform its Ramadan marketing strategies for the packaging industry in the Middle East?Drawing from our extensive 28 years of experience in the market, we closely monitor seasonal trends, particularly during Ramadan, to anticipate shifts in consumer behaviour and preferences.Consumers show a heightened interest in exploring new brands and promotional packs and are more likely to make spontaneous purchases during Ramadan. To address their changing behaviour effectively we offer a variety of products and attractive promotions to consumers to enhance their experience and engagement with Hotpack.As manufacturers of consumables, we leverage our expertise to understand the specific needs and preferences of local consumers during this time This includes identifying the demand for customized branding options for meal boxes and other packaging solutions, which we validate through thorough research and feedback from existing and potential customers.Moreover, we conduct market research to collect comprehensive data and insights, including trends in online platforms such as search and social media, as well as consumer purchasing behaviour. This research allows us to keep abreast of market requirements and trends during the season, enabling us to develop targeted and impactful marketing strategies that resonate with our audience.How does your company adapt its product offerings or promotional activities to align with the purchasing behavior and preferences of consumers during Ramadan in the Middle East?We utilize a dedicated sales and procurement team to forecast and plan well in advance, ensuring readiness for the Ramadan season. This includes strategizing promotional activities at least six months in advance to establish clear objectives and timelines for execution.Market research and cart studies inform us about curating promotional bundles and offers that streamline the shopping experience for consumers while enhancing brand reliability and relevance during the period. We also introduce a collection of products printed in Ramadan-themed designs.Additionally, we adapt our product labels, store merchandising, and communications to reflect Ramadan visuals, ensuring relevance and appeal to consumers. We expand our production capacity to meet the increased demand for generic food packaging and customized solutions during Ramadan, leveraging our extensive network of warehouses for efficient storage and distribution.Our social media content during the season focuses on relatable themes such as iftar settings, charity, and meal preparation, resonating with consumers and enhancing engagement during this significant month.In a competitive market landscape, what differentiation strategies does your company employ to stand out and capture consumer attention during Ramadan in the Middle East?For starters, we maintain a continuous focus on packaging innovation. Each Ramadan, we introduce new designs to meet evolving market demands, ensuring our products stand out on shelves and attract consumer attention.Additionally, our research and development (R&D) team consistently works on new product lines and innovative designs, keeping our customers engaged and offering added utility, which enhances our marketing campaigns.Moreover, our commitment to delivering high-quality products consistently differentiates us from competitors and instils trust among consumers.We actively participate in Ramadan leaflet promotions with major hypermarkets, supermarkets, and discount centres, utilizing promo packs and eye-catching displays to attract consumer attention.Furthermore, we implement a 360-degree campaign that connects online and offline consumers to the same offerings across the GCC, enabling brand recall and recognition, and further enhancing our competitive edge in the market.With the rise of digital and social media platforms, how does your company integrate online channels into its Ramadan marketing efforts for the packaging industry in the Middle East? Can you elaborate on any successful digital marketing initiatives?We maintain a strong presence on social media, digital marketing platforms and conventional media channels. By utilizing our e-commerce platform and actively engaging on various digital channels, we ensure broad visibility and accessibility to our target audience.Our focus lies on creating creative and engaging content tailored for these platforms. Our dedicated content production team ensures relevance and resonance with our audience.As mentioned, we regularly run digital campaigns tailored to different phases of Ramadan, such as 'Get ready for Ramadan' and 'Ahlan Ramadan,' along with flash sales and weekend/month-end sales. These initiatives have proven highly successful in reaching and converting customers both online and offline, capitalizing on the heightened demand for our products during Ramadan.In addition to campaigns, we leverage influencer marketing to develop a community around our brand. By highlighting how our offerings and products can be helpful and used during the season, we connect with our audience on a deeper level.Moreover, we have an extensive presence across e-commerce marketplaces, with listings on over 70 platforms, expanding our reach and accessibility to customers across the region and driving sales during Ramadan.