Easter is upon us and many food brands are capitalizing on the holiday to engage with consumers using a variety of marketing techniques.

While it doesn’t have the duration or the cultural breadth of Christmas, Easter is a time when consumers are heavy shoppers of confectionery, especially chocolate.

IBISWorld estimates that Easter accounts for US$6.1 billion in chocolate sales globally with Australians alone spending over $200 million on confectionery over the holiday.

With figures like these, its unsurprising that brands are making special efforts to attract consumers to their Easter offerings. Here are a few ways they are doing so in Asia-Pacific.

1) Marks & Spencer (Singapore)

Kicking off the Easter season early, Marks & Spencer in Singapore created a Buzzfeed-style quiz promoted via their Instagram profile to determine ‘Which Hot Cross Bun Are You‘.

m&s which hot cross bun are you

Asking participants to answer a few light-hearted questions about themselves, the promotion resulted in an email which matched the entrant to a hot cross bun, listed their characteristics and placed them into a prize draw.

Participation in the event may have been limited, though, by the fact that Instagram does not allow links directly on Instagram posts – so those interested had to find the link at the top of M&S’s Instagram page.

2) Lindt (Australia)

To promote its Easter chocolate, Swiss chocolatier Lindt is using its usual high-quality creative for the Australian market demonstrating how it makes its gold chocolate bunnies by hand.

Additionally, Easter shoppers who are looking for something even more exclusive are invited to visit the Lindt pop-up store at Coles Supermarkets over the Easter weekend. There, consumers can have their gold chocolate bunny personalized on-site, a rare treat not available through any other channel.

3) Cadbury (Australia)

Few brands have as much to gain from the Easter holiday as the chocolate egg market leader, Cadbury. To promote its confectionery in 2019, Cadbury is holding the largest Easter egg hunt in Australia in Werribee, near Melbourne, on Good Friday, the 19th April.

Aimed at children up to the age of 12, the experiential marketing event features the eponymous hunt, a performance by kid’s band Hi-5 and other attractions such as rides and, of course, a visit from the Easter bunny.

In addition to associating its brand with this very popular annual event, Cadbury is also donating proceeds to The Royal Children’s Hospital’s Good Friday Appeal to add to the AUS$1 million raised from previous events.

4) Cadbury (New Zealand and Australia)

Alongside its Antipodean peer, Cadbury New Zealand held a live online egg hunt on Facebook using the platform’s 360-degree live video.

People were invited to join the live event on April 11th and find one of 120 Easter eggs hidden in the live video. The virtual ‘hunt’ was made all the more engaging by frequent updates from the moderators about when eggs had been found.

Those fortunate enough to provide the correct location of the egg first in the Facebook live chat window were given a Cadbury Easter pack as a prize.

With more than 34,000 comments on the NZ video, the campaign was surely a great success for brand awareness and engagement.

And the brand could use a break. Cadbury faced a ‘scandal’ earlier this year in New Zealand when it decided to half the size of its Marshmallow Eggs in the country.

You’ll notice that our Cadbury Marshmallow Eggs look a little different this Easter. While we’ve combined two halves into one, there’s still lots of fluffy deliciousness with Cadbury chocolate to share around.

Posted by Cadbury Dairy Milk on Sunday, 13 January 2019

The Facebook post, above, announcing the change attracted more than 1,400 comments, many of which expressed disappointment at the Cadbury’s decision. With millions of dollars at stake, brands are well advised not to upset the Easter chocolate market segment.