Could Dubai become Monaco of the Middle East?

Could Dubai become Monaco of the Middle East?

Before the global Covid outbreak, business executives and professionals used to fly to Dubai from their hometowns quite frequently. In the wake of the global social distancing protocols, many of these business professionals decided to move to Dubai permanently. Free travel was still restricted and there was an urgent need to be based in a place from where smooth business operations could be made possible. It helped Dubai to emerge as the perfect place for international business owners and professionals.

Why Dubai?

Strategic location and direct flights to most destinations are not the only factor that influenced the international business travelers’ throng to Dubai. There are many other contributing factors like a stable government, a tax-free regime, a unique location, and its bilateral terms with the rest of the world.

Taxes are on the rise in the post-Covid era

While taxes are on the rise globally in the post-Covid era, Dubai has continued to offer a tax-free regime to its investors, business owners, and HNWIs. Dubai has started many visa classes to attract HNWIs like Golden Visa. Further, visa classes for freelancers and global workers are available as well which are not tied to a company. There are no taxes apart from the Value Added Tax (VAT) which are only 5%.

European HNWIs Throng to Dubai Post-Pandemic

Investors and business owners flock to the regions where money flows. In the post-pandemic world, the HNWIs from Europe have found a new home in Dubai. According to a recent report, more than 2,000 millionaires have moved to Dubai since the global outbreak of the novel coronavirus.

The New World Wealth, known for tracking wealth movement by millionaires, said in one of its recent reports that the HNWIs population in Dubai surged to 54,000 by June 2021, which was 52,000 in December 2020, thereby translating an increase of 3.8%.

Monaco – a city-state situated on the French coast of the Mediterranean, has one of the highest number of HNWIs per capita. In the post-covid world; many HNWIs are choosing Dubai as their home.  So it is the only logical reason to see what sectors will prosper in Dubai.

Monaco’s Top-Performing Sectors

According to IMSEE, scientific and technical activities, administrative and support services contributed 20.3% to Monaco’s GDP, followed by financial and insurance activities at 18.3%, construction at 11.4%, real estate at 9.6%, and wholesale trade at 8.6%. Breakdown of Monaco’s market is below:

A Glance at the UAE Economy (Sector Wise)

The UAE economy is quite mature when it comes to sectors that normally flourish with HNWIs. No difference when it comes to a sector diversification in recent times. According to the figures prepared by Statista, the wholesale and retail industry contributed 22.7%, financial services & insurance chipped in with 11.9%, transport and storage with 11.7%, manufacturing with 8.9%, and real estate with 8.2% to the UAE GDP during the first quarter of the Year 2021.

Sectors to Look Forward in Dubai in Next 10 Years

If you take a detailed look at the above comparison among the economies of the UAE and Monaco, many common sectors contribute tremendously to their wealth.

Administrative and Support Services; for HNWIs is something that makes up 20% of Monaco’s GDP. This sector is set to grow in Dubai; whether these are concierge services, virtual/physical assistants, fashion designers, interior designers or collectables like NFTs and Art.

Real Estate and Construction; more or less takes up the same share of GDP between Monaco and Dubai. As the market matures; the quality work will thrive while volume work of setting-up tens of buildings will stay stagnant.

Financial and Insurance; is one of the most regulated area across the world. Dubai needs to accept international collateral against financial liabilities for larger transactions. With DIFC; Dubai is trying to achieve that and hopefully more boutique and investment banks will call it home in the coming years.

Tourism; will not do well in the coming 10 years whether that is personal or business. With rising competition from Saudi as well as COVID era risks and realization of how viruses spread; people will avoid unnecessary travel. This sector provides jobs to around 48% of residents and probably will be re-adjusted into support services.

Diamond and Gold Trading; with an influx of HNWIs; these industries are expected to grow whether in the form of final wearables or a raw commodity as hedge against inflation.

Our Opinion

We believe by 2030 Dubai will be somewhat of morph between Switzerland and Monaco for Middle East. Switzerland for its neutrality in a turbulent WWII Europe and Monaco for its Tax Friendly policies. For businesses; the environment ahead will stay chaotic for the foreseeable future where growth will be tied to change. A small SME construction company might want to venture into upgrading existing homes; a Travel agent; might want to focus more on healthcare tourism. One thing that COVID has taught everyone; you can not predict the future; and it is necessary to stay agile to stay afloat.

How to Boost E-commerce Sales Through Content Marketing?

Ecommerce has been popular since the Dot-Com Boom of the 1990s where companies such as Amazon and eBay thrived to become some of the most recognizable names in the industry today. Although eCommerce services have gained popularity throughout the West,countries being America, the UK, Canada, and Australia, they are now famous in the Middle East in countries such as the UAE, Kuwait, and Bahrain. This reason is why so many startups are eCommerce based with many looking to mimic the success of Amazon. But boosting eCommerce sales is not as simple as just creating a good-looking website. The text, images, and videos on the site matter as much as the layout.

1. Invest in video content: 2019 is the year of video. Video content offers unique advantages such as a higher engagement rate and a greater chance of your content being shared across social media.However, for video content you need to keep some factors in mind. Your equipment, technology, and locations should be adequate. You need to be acquainted with the most popular categories of videos, E.G., tutorial,informational, etc. Only by utilising video properly, will more users be directed towards your site, therefore boosting eCommerce sales in the long run.

2. SEO: SEO is short for Search Engine Optimisation which is a process that affects the online awareness of your website or web page. Without knowledge of SEO in the 21st century, it is pointless launching an eCommerce site. SEO comprises of many activities with the most common being using proper keywords in articles, following an adequate word count, and using both inbound and outbound links. If you are a novice to SEO, you’re in luck as WordPress has many SEO plug-ins to make your journey much easier.Pick the correct social media channel:Selecting a proper social media channel is as important as the quality of your content. There are a lot of social media sites out there but some are more popular than others. Also keep in mind which site is best known for what type of content. For example, if you are aiming to promote text-based content then Instagram and Pinterest are the wrong choices as these sites cater towards picture-based content. Similarly, YouTube and Twitch complement video better than images.

3. Hire an expert: Managing your eCommerce website while also working on your online presence can be a mind-boggling task.Therefore, you should consider hiring a social media expert or an SEO professional. The fields of both social media and SEO have been optimised to the fullest in the 2010s, so it is recommended that you hire at least one of them to boost sales in the long term.Influencer marketing: Similar to hiring anSEO or social media expert is the concept of influencer marketing. Anin fluencer is a person in the online community (such as a YouTube content creator or celebrity) who has major influence in your line of work. For example, if you are a video game seller then having influencers such as PewDiePieand Angry Joe on your side is guaranteed to direct more potential customers to your website.

Types of Videos to Add in Your Social Media Marketing Strategy

Video content is the way to go in 2019.Many social media managers have cited videos as having higher engagement rates than textual and pictorial content. But before you invest in video-making, you should be aware that there are different categories of videos that are uploaded online on a daily basis.

Informational Videos:

As the title suggests, these are videos made to give viewers information about a topic, product, or service. But giving information via video is not exactly like writing down information on a social media page. If your style of promoting info is tedious, then viewers will be turned off by your content. Aim to make these kinds of videos entertaining. Thus, adding a touch of humour goes a long way in informational video-making.

Tutorial Videos:

YouTube is one of the world’s most popular websites and is always on the Top 5 List of Alexa Sites in any country. So, social media marketers are bound to take a chance on YouTube somewhere along the line. If you’re new to YouTube then you should consider the advice of veteran content creators. Many prominent content creators site How To videos as one of the most commonly searched/watched categories on YouTube. Tutorial videos can be made regarding your products and services as well as on a wide range of topics. Make sure they are both entertaining and factual and not too long.

User-Generated Videos:

Social media is all about interaction. And there is no better form of interaction than requesting your customers to make videos for your brand on social media. One method is to offer a reward for the best video made on a topic of your choosing. This will bring together both loyal customers and new consumers. Remember to remind viewers to share their videos among friends and family members. Also, advise them to use hashtags when they post these videos on their respective social media profiles.

Behind The Scenes Videos:

Behind The Scenes comprises of showcasing the day-to-day activities of your company, interviews with staff, endorsements by loyal customers, etc. Why are behind the scenes videos so popular with viewers? It is because a normal promotional video only talks about the corporate identity of your brand, whereas behind the scenes footage allows customers to relate to your company in a more humanistic way.

Live Videos:

This category is one of the most popular options for video-based content in the 2010s. Live videos are not only more interactive as you can shoot a video and interact with viewers (via comments) simultaneously, but they allow you to surprise old and new customers alike with announcements. Keep in mind that the location should be adequate, the equipment and technology should be up-to-date, and the message should be clear and concise. Facebook and YouTube are the most popular options for live video sharing.

Calculate Your Influencer Marketing ROI in 5 Steps

Many companies prefer using influencer marketing so they allocate a majority of their budget to it. Influencer marketing is a form of online marketing; utilizing prominent members of the online community (bloggers, vloggers, celebrities, etc.) who can use their viewer-base to promote the company. It is one of the most common types of internet advertising in the 21st century. However, even if the majority of businesses prefer this method of marketing, they would still want to know the Return on Investment (ROI) regarding this technique. In this article, we will guide you through 5 Steps to Calculate your Influencer Marketing ROI.

1. Compare your influencers:

After selecting the influencers you will ultimately use, the next step is to compare and contrast their performance levels. Firstly, review the performance of the influencers at the beginning of their respective campaigns.Secondly, take each influencer’s rate of post engagements and measure them against each other. If you design a custom URL for each influencer, you can track the traffic from each of their domains. Overall, comparing your influencers allows you to choose which ones to use for your next fiscal year,and which ones to let go.

2. Select the influencer tracking program:

Manually tracking your influencers’ campaign ROI can be a burden, so why not try out an easy-to-use program instead? There are a number of ROI tracking programs available on the net. Grin is a popular program which besides tracking an impressive list of KPIs (Key Performance Indicators), also gives you the perk of breaking down the performance of each influencer and piece of content based on similar KPIs. TapInfluence is another popular choice where you can analyze ROI in real time. The performance of each influencer can be tracked via reach, ROI, engagement, etc. Industry benchmarks can also be accessed using this program. NeoReach is another program which offers a real-time tracking mechanism. An added advantage is the capacity to measure the performance levels of your influencers and even your comprehensive campaign.

3. Create aims and performance metrics for separate influencers:

Even after selecting the best influencers in the business, it is not possible for each and every influencer to contribute to your ROI in the same way. This is why you should match your campaign aims with individual influencer goals. One example would be to raise the awareness of your company’s main website. Therefore, a separate influencer aim would be to complete that goal in a specific amount of time. Individual influencer metrics include, but are not limited to, revenue, conversions to customers, and average engagement rate.

4. Outline campaign aims to track ROI accurately:

Not only will this let you know what your company wants, it would also help in finding those influencers who best complement your business’s aims. Common aims include raising brand awareness and enhancing sales, but you should also explore more unique goals for the long term.

5. Set metrics to measure your campaign’s performance level:

Common metrics comprise of being realistic and being achievable. If you are confused about which metrics to choose, simply examine which metrics are frequently being utilised by other marketers. Popular options include clicks, impressions, and conversions.

How to promote your brand in Ramadan

Ramadan is set to start around 5th of May this year, which is observed around the world by almost a quarter of the global population. Consumer behavior during this time changes significantly and you should be aware of what to expect to ensure you stay ahead of the curve.

Online Retail Sales:

In 2017; the online retail sales increased by 42% in theMiddle East region. To top it off 74% of retail sales were on mobile devices. The peak period is just before Iftar time between 3:00 PM to 6:00 PM. Could this be brands employing instant gratification tactics or people browsing mobile devices while sitting in traffic?

Do not put your potential customer on rational decision-making during this time; focus on funnel and provide no disruptions for quick checkout.

Gift Shopping:

Ramadan is a very social month with evening feasts celebrated amongst family and friends. The month ends with Eid Al Fitr which is three days of feasts. This means a lot of gift shopping.

Concentrate on providing an easy gift checkout process with ideally, assisted gift shopping funnel. To cross-sell and up-sell, ensure you start the marketing before Ramadan and provide incentives to buy multiple gifts in a single basket.

Online Travel Bookings:

In Gulf countries; a decent chunk of population are expat workers; they travel during Eid holidays. In the third week of Ramadan the travel bookings spike by 75%.

If you are not in the travel industry; then use personas to promote your ‘gift’ merchandise to take home with them. Offer destination delivery. 

Screen Time:

During Ramadan screen time of consumers increase drastically. With brands focusing on TV and consumers moving to paid subscriptions like Netflix without ads; the optimal way would be online video streaming services.

YouTube viewership increases drastically during Ramadan for following categories: TV & Comedy, Cooking and Recipes, Religion and Beliefs, Gaming and Automobiles. Clearly evident from the searches is gender gap in viewership audience. Use it to tailor your marketing messages.


Concentrate on promotions as consumers expect better deals during Ramadan. There is an overall increase in search during this month for deals and offers. Amongst these, “Hypermarket deals” and “car deals” are significant.

Online grocery stores should concentrate on their supply chain and try to provide delivery before Iftar (evening) feast time. Coupling this with lower cost of operations; we believe this category can grow their market share significantly. 

About Centric:

Centric is a digital transformation agency with strategic insight in the Middle East market; providing services to clients across the full spectrum of digital. From strategy to execution to marketing and brandbuilding.

We would love to hear from you. If you feel that we should share our expertise on a given topic; please send suggestions to [email protected]

Digital Advertising Races Ahead Of Traditional

2019 brings us many changes with a major one being that this will be the first time that the costs for digital promotions will supersede the budget of traditional advertisements in the United States of America. Not only does this show a positive impact technology has made on the advertising sector of the commercial world, but it also shows an increased preference for businesses to opt for digital media instead of the conventional means to promote products and services, e.g., newspapers, radio,TV, etc.

Monetary comparisons between digital advertising and traditional advertising for 2019 (USA)

Expenditure on digital advertising at the end of 2019: $130 billion.

Expenditure on traditional advertising at the end of 2019: $110 billion.

Percentage of the market to be captured by digital advertising: 54.2 %

Percentage of the market to be captured by traditional advertising: 46.8%.

It is estimated that in 2023, two-thirds of the market shall be dominated by technological forms of marketing.

Main reasons for the decline in traditional advertising in 2019

Directories like newspapers and YellowPages faced a heavy decline in readership in 2018. The percentage of peopleutilising the conventional means of advertising is looking to drop further in 2019. In 2019, Yellow Pages’ readership is expected to fall by 19% while newspapers’ readership is predicted to decline by 18%. One major reason behind this prediction is the lack of vital events in the US for 2019; no elections and no Olympics.

Who are the winners and who are the losers?

Even though tech is driving the market in the 2010s, it doesn’t mean that every digital franchise will be capturing an equal slice of the pie. Google and Facebook—the 2 tech giants of the USA—are expected to maintain a whopping 59% of the market share for 2019. Despite Google’s share forecasted to drop (from 38.2% to 37.2%), Facebook’s share will be unaltered and might even increase this year (from 21.8% to 22.1%).

You might wondering why Facebook’s share is rising and not falling due to the privacy scandals that have shaken the company recently. However, Instagram—a popular social media network which is owned by Facebook—will be the main reason for Facebook’s rise in market share in 2019. With Instagram Stories being one of the primary causes for this social network’s surge in popularity for this year.

In addition to Google and Facebook, the list of the top five is completed by Amazon, Microsoft, and Verizon.

What does this mean for Agency business?

Traditional agencies are under pressure world wide and they are aggressively trying to augment their digital skills either by developing internally, acquisitions or partnerships. WPP share price decreasing in the last year by a whopping 40% is a testament of the storm that traditional agencies find themselves in. With Google and Facebook both investing heavily in AI to optimize campaigns as well as third party tools; margins in digital marketing will be squeezed further. Centric is working diligently to partner up with these companies to not only drive relevant traffic but also is experienced in building digital platforms where individual personas view different content (Dynamic in-session content) for increased conversions.

Facebook Launches “Three and a Half Degrees Podcast” Series About Business Building

What is Facebook?

Facebook is one of the world’s most popular social media websites. It was launched on February 4, 2004. Along with Amazon, Apple, and Google, it is one of the Big Four technology companies in the world.

Three and a Half Degrees

Facebook is launching a podcast about business building. In the past, we were bound by face-to-face communication or less instantaneous methods of communication. But now, in the 2000s, no longer are we held apart by a distance of six degrees. Technological advancement in the 21st century has separate us by a meagre space of three and a half degrees.Hence, the show is titled Three and a Half Degrees.

The podcast will give listeners an insight into the advantages, happenings, and hardships faced by enterprises operating in this latest sphere of technology. The show will feature unprecedented match-ups of commercial leaders, entrepreneurs, and thinkers who will talk about shocking connections between technological innovations, digital ideas, and business plans for the future.

The podcast series will be hosted by David Fischer (Vice-President of Business and Marketing Partnerships at Facebook). The show will air triumphant tales relating to business endeavours in today’s day and age of advanced digitisation.

First Episode

Blake Mycoskie (creator of TOMS) along with Bryan and Bradford Manning (creators of the charitable business Two Blind Brothers) will be interviewed in the foremost episode of Three and a Half Degrees.

The description given to the pilot episode by Facebook is as follows:

Since the newest generation of consumers care more about brands that have a social mission versus brands that prioritise profit growth, this episode explores what it takes for business big and small to adopt a financially successful, social good model.

The first episode’s running time is 24 minutes.

It narrates the tale of an entrepreneur who creates a soaring and socially positive company and how he also has influenced others to follow his honest path.


Remember that the talk does not feature content about Facebook itself. So don’t tune into the episode thinking that Facebook’s strategies and tactics will be discussed in the show. Still, there will be a lot of information that businesspeople can obtain to utilise either in their current commercial ventures or in their future business plans. If you are on the lookout for the latest podcasts, and are eager to listen to intellectual conversations between entrepreneurs, then don’t forget to subscribe to Three Degrees and a Half.

Twitter Released Official Marketing Calendar 2019

What is Twitter?

Twitter is one of the most popular social media sites across the globe. On the website you can write public messages in the form of tweets. Though registered users can write, like, and retweet (share) tweets, non-registered users can only read tweets. The site also offers direct messaging services to registered users. Twitter was founded in 2006 by Jack Dorsey, Noah Glass, Biz Stone, and Evan Williams.

2019 Twitter Marketing Calendar

Twitter has launched its 2019 marketing calendar which is helpful for both people and businesses. If you ever wondered how much worldwide events garner on Twitter such as the Oscars or the Grammy Awards, the 2019 marketing calendar is the perfect place to start.

Twitter’s internal data was utilised in the making of this 2019 marketing calendar. This was done in order to find out about 2019’s most looked expected events which will also result in a rise in Twitter traffic. These events comprise of both conventional days (Valentine’s Day, Halloween) to previously unheard of events like National Puppy Day and National Pizza Day.

If you are based outside of the United States of America and Canada then you can download area-specific calendars like the 2019 UK and Ireland Twitter event calendar or the 2019 Middle East region Twitter event calendar.

Reasons to Download the 2019 Twitter Marketing Calendar

On Twitter, impressions on a tweet means the number of times the tweet has appeared on a person’s timeline. Not all impressions count as views but they are rather seen as potential views. So, if you’re a regular Twitter user who wants to gain more followers then you can pick out important events on the 2019 Twitter marketing calendar and choose specific days on which to post your content.

Similarly, if you are a business such as an ad agency then your main goal is to increase awareness for your clientele. Suppose your client is a fashion firm then one of the best days to tweet would be on a Fashion Week date. One example is New York Fashion Week which will fall on February 8, 2019. The event is estimated to attract 91 million impressions so this isn’t a date you would want to miss.

One of the finest aspects about this calendar is that you will be able to tweet on days featuring niche events, allowing your tweets to gain even more impressions than ever before. May 4, 2019 is listed as Star Wars Day with an estimated 196 million impressions. Other events you have likely never heard of before include World Emoji Day (July 17), National Ice Cream Day (July 21), and Talk Like A Pirate Day (September 19).

These opportunities will only appear once a year so it is crucial that businesses take advantage of the important dates mentioned on the 2019 Twitter marketing calendar.

Download the 2019 Middle East region Twitter event calendar for year-round campaign inspiration and start tapping into conversations that start on Twitter.