5 Facts about Russia That Can Impact Your Advertising

Any number of factors can influence an advertising campaign, but the more equipped advertisers are on their target audience, the better they can adapt for their audience. Russian Search Marketing brings you 5 facts about Russia that will help advertisers better understand their Russian audience, and how to prepare and improve their offers for the Russian Market.

Russia has 11 time zones: 

Being one of the countries with the most time zones in the world, it is important to consider how Russian local times impact scheduling ad timing. Due to Russia’s size, it is important as an advertiser to decide what locations you’re targeting. Depending on your business or service, you may only want to target metropolitan areas or even the whole country. If you want to target smaller areas, advertisers should focus on the time zones of specific locations. If you want to reach the whole country then it is important to think about when people are using your service or shopping for you ad campaign.

In addition to Orthodox religious holidays, Russians celebrate Men and Women’s Day:

 It’s important for advertisers to be aware of important dates that will ultimately impact their campaigns, special promotions, and traffic throughout the year. As the Russian Orthodox Church follows the Julian calendar, Orthodox Christmas is celebrated on January 7th. While it is not a huge gift-giving holiday, it is important to note that it takes place later than Christmas in the West and often impacts online behavior. Another important feature of Russia’s advertising calendar is that the biggest gift giving holiday in Russia is the New Year. This is the biggest holiday in Russian, and officially Russians are given five days to observe it.  However, in practice many Russians simply continue their holiday to the 7th, Orthodox Christmas. Other gift giving holidays that are exclusive to Russia include Defender of the Fatherland Day on February 23rd and International Women’s Day on March 8th. On Defender of the Fatherland Day men of all ages are usually given small gifts, and this holiday celebrated similarly to the West’s Father’s Day. International Women’s day is celebrated similarly to the West’s Mother’s Day, except it includes giving small gifts to women of all ages.

 Only about 3% of Russia’s population is fluent in English: 

For any advertisers launching abroad, localization is an important factor in being successful but Russian localization is especially important given the size of the audience and lack of English skills. At 87 million users, Russia has the largest Internet audience in Europe, making it a huge market for online shopping and advertising. However, according to Romir Research Holding only 3% of Russia’s population is fluent in English as of 2015—about 30% of Russians have some knowledge of English, and only 20% can read and translate with a dictionary. A site’s potential is severely limited if users are unable to understand the content presented to them. Through language translation and Russian localization sites will gain the trust of foreign customers and increased credibility among their international user base. 

Russians hold a high value on trust and familiarity:

Culturally trust and loyalty are important values that Russians can appreciate even when shopping. Russians trust and comfort with online shopping has definitely increased, but there are some important factors that can help advertisers make Russian shoppers more comfortable shopping with them. For example, including local contact information and FAQ details are an important feature to include to make your site credible and to build trust with a potential Russian customer. Offering several options for customer service and a local phone number and address are especially helpful.    It’s common for Russians to search for “official” sites due to a number of sites selling counterfeit goods. Consider bidding on “official” plus your brand name as part of your campaign in addition to trustworthy site links you include in your ad.

Russians use capitalization much less than English speakers: 

Russian grammar rules are different than English grammar rules. More specifically, you wouldn’t capitalize certain things in Russian that you would in English. For example, Russians don’t capitalize some proper nouns like days of the week. Other examples are names of languages, titles like Dr. and Professor, and months. The most common things capitalized in Russian are names and the first word of a sentence. This is an extremely important factor to consider when making an ad campaign for a Russian audience because if they see grammar errors, they wont click your ad.