JAKARTA: Advertising expenditure in Indonesia has risen during this Ramadan compared to last as people have spent increased leisure time watching TV, new data indicate, while retail spending is also expected to surge.

Figures from Nielsen Advertising Information Services point to a 7% lift in adpsend this year, the Jakarta Globe reported.

The research firm also found that, across eleven major cities, more people were watching TV – up from 5.9m a day before Ramadan to 7m during Ramadan.

And as well as more people watching, they were watching for longer, averaging 5 hours 19 minutes compared to pre-Ramadan figures of 4 hours 53 minutes.

“These trends indicate that during Ramadan, people have a tendency to spend more time at home,” said Hellen Katerina, executive director for media business at Nielsen Indonesia.

And in fact, many employers, public and private, have reduced their office hours during the fasting month, allowing workers to go home one hour earlier than usual; advertisers appear to have reacted by increasing their spending on TV ads.

People are also spending more time online, devoting an average of 3 hours 17 minutes to surfing the web and shopping online during Ramadan, a 12% increase on the pre-Ramadan period.

Bricks-and-mortar stores are likewise benefiting from millions of civil servants getting a holiday bonus and the so-called 13th check, where employees get a cost of living adjustment added.

“We expect retail sales to increase by between 20% and 25% compared with the Idul Fitri holiday last year,” said Roy Mandey, chairman of the Indonesian Retailers Association (Aprindo).

He added that this year’s Ramadan and Idul Fitri holiday could contribute as much as 40% of the annual sales target compared to 15% in an average year.

Sourced from Jakarta Globe; additional content by WARC staff