Much like the rest of the world, the UAE has taken to social media, and on average, the population spends over 2.5 hours on social media platforms every single day. Social Media, from Facebook to SnapChat and Instagram, have become one of the most important parts of daily internet usage in the UAE, and serves as a melting pot for creativity, business and thought leadership. As smartphone prices have dropped considerably in the region, there has been a significant increase in mobile phone usage and the quick rise in social media usage can be attributed to the easy availability of quick internet at lower prices.
The youth in the Middle East are increasingly using social media to gain access to information and entertainment, particularly through visual and video social platforms such as instagram and TikTok, and this trend is predicted to grow in 2020 - stated in the 8th annual study on social network use in the region, published by the School of Journalism and Communication the University of Oregon in the United States. In the study named “Social Media in the Middle East: 2019 in Review” the paper stated that 9 out of 10 MENA youth use at least one social media channel every day, while half of Arab youth said they get their information, entertainment and news through social media ahead of other channels such as newspapers and television.
YouTube has quickly become one of the most popular online mediums in the UAE and in Arabic speaking countries, while TikTok, SnapChat and Instagram have established themselves as the most popular social media platforms in the Arabic speaking world. If your business is targeting an Arabic speaking audience, there is no reason why you shouldn't reach them in their native language, and on their favourite social platforms.
About Arabic Social Media
So, how do you navigate the world of Arabic social media for lead generation? The Arabic language is not a simple Google translate job, you will need to work with Arabic speakers in order to create campaigns that speak to the specific audience and region you are targeting.
As everyone knows, a carefully planned and engaging social media strategy is important for any business, and it is no longer enough to simply have a person post to your social media accounts without any intention behind the posts. All social content needs to be strategically planned, on brand and most importantly, offer value to the audience. But when it comes to Arabic social media, as stated previously, you cannot simply replicate your content and your strategy that you use for other markets. Your language, tone and imagery needs to be carefully thought out and crafted, tailored to suit the unique audience.
Localise your Social Media Marketing Approach
Not only do certain words or phrases have different meanings in different Arabic regions, the culture in these regions vary too. This is why it is important that you localise your social media lead generation and social media marketing strategy.
This is not just about localising language and ensuring that the words used speak to a particular audience in a particular region, this also means that you need to craft your marketing message for the specific localised audience, and this is why it is important to work alongside an agency or social media marketing professional who has experience with local culture, trends and slang. Never copy and paste from your westernized strategy and never copy and paste your content into Google translate - this is the number one rule!
Brand Exclusivity and Trends
When it comes to the Arabic speaking consumer, specifically individuals in the UAE, you need to consider that they tend to make purchases based on recommendations by friends and family, and they always take style and exclusivity into consideration. In fact, the regional consumer tends to purchase products based on brand appeal and popular trends. Of course, this happens all over the world but is particularly important to the Arabic speaking consumer.
This is because the majority of consumers in the MENA region are tapped into trends and fashionable brands, and enjoy purchasing brand names. Maintaining a certain level of trendiness is a big part of consumer habits in the region and this is why you need to keep up with social and brand trends in the region, and tailor your social media strategy to reach the trend-aware and exclusivity conscious consumer.
Effective Marketing Tactics
It is best to build up a group of loyal customers and develop a creative and highly personalised email and social media campaign, tailored to your specific audience. When you begin, focus on your current customers and make them feel a part of your brand, developing a sense of exclusivity.
You do not have to rush to grow your audience, rather grow your segment gradually by using effective social media engagement tactics (sharing Arabic blogs, videos and aesthetically pleasing imagery) - and never forget to maintain excellent customer support, CRM tactics and re-targeting campaigns.
When it comes to your marketing and branding message, build a campaign that will make your brand stand out in the market and deliver your message in a straightforward and easily consumable way. This means that if you have a social media campaign that clicks through to a lead generation landing page, ensure the content on your landing page is straight to the point and avoid lengthy, long and drawn out descriptions of what you are offering. Simplify your approach, and hit the right spot immediately.
Marketing in the MENA region does have its challenges, and in order to launch an effective social media lead generation campaign in the region, you need to do a lot of research into what the right marketing messages would look like for each region you target, and understanding the consumer will not come easily if you are not an expert in the Arabic language or social media world.
This is why it is always important to work alongside a professional Arabic digital marketing company.
Nexa, Dubai's Leading Independent Digital Marketing Agency offers Arabic digital marketing and translations from English for all content, including websites, landing pages, brochures and social media posts to help you reach a new online audience.
Contact us to find out more - and get ranking!