The festive season is here. Various brands plan for and achieve an uplift of sales for their products around Diwali, Christmas, and Chinese New Year.

Like Christmas, many ethnic festivals are major buying time for various cultural groups in Canada.

Before planning a festival based campaign, a brand must consider these facts:

1) Products that make sense – Some products are greater fit for an occasion than others. A congratulatory Chinese New Year ad in a Chinese newspaper will not directly result in incremental car sales. Nor will that build a deeper relationship with the Chinese community by merely saying kung hay fat choy once a year. Let’s face it. Chinese New Year is not an occasion for the Chinese community in Canada to buy cars. A celebratory ad doesn’t help much to cut through the clutter in the Chinese media nor build long lasting relationship with the community.

On the other hand, using festivals for relationship marketing would make more sense for financial institutions or telecommunication companies, which interact with the communities on a more regular basis.

2) Price is right – So you found a product that is a perfect fit for a festival and ready to roll out a campaign. Before hitting the market, one must check if the price is right for the occasion as well as the target segment. For example, a confectionary product promoted as a gifting option during the festival of Diwali should ideally be priced between $10 and $25. Confectionary gifting is very common around Diwali, but no one will like to visit a close friend or family with a gift that’s considered cheap in price.

3) Place it precisely – Canada has witnessed a growth of ethnic neighbourhoods in many cities making the life of a multicultural marketing team much easier. It’s no-brainer that a Vaisakhi campaign must factor in neighbourhoods of Brampton in Greater Toronto Area and Surrey in Vancouver, which have the largest concentration of Sikhs and the Punjabi community. While planning and buying ethnic media, or event-based outreach programs, relevant ethnic neighbourhoods must be considered.

4) Promote it well – If you did a great job by finding a great product and an even greater offer for a festival, let people know about it. Many a times, some great stories are told within a marketing team only and not to the market. To ensure that a festival-based marketing campaign is successful, a promotional plan must be put in place at the onset. Sometimes popular ethnic media spaces are sold out sooner due to more and more brands being keen on advertising to ethnic segments around major festivals.

5) Partner with a resourceful agency – Finding a multicultural ad agency that is insightful and resourceful is critical for a successful campaign. Insights put you in the right direction and resourcefulness gets the work done. One must consider an agency’s own internal cultural composition to do justice with different festival based campaigns targeting various ethnic segments throughout the year. The more diversity that a multicultural agency in Canada has, the more versatility it can display within ethnic marketing realm.