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How Cricket has upped the game for brands to shine

  • Apr 25,2019
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For many of us, cricket brings back the old memories of enjoying a match with family while Team India kept us glued to the television screens and waiting for those epic sixes and fours. Cricket has always been a crowd puller in India and with the ongoing blockbuster Indian Premier League (IPL) the audience is not only crazy to support their favourite teams in the stadium but also shower appreciation for their front runner players at home.

It is not just a mere sport but is widely popular as a tradition that creates a common bond among all Indians. The bond is so strong that it cuts across all castes, creeds, communities etc. in a demographically diverse country like ours. This tradition and love for the game has been going on since ages and is bound to continue for the decades to come.

In today’s world of digitalization where everything can be accessed with a press of a button, sports has made a much deeper impact amongst Indians. People are hooked to their laptops, cell phones etc. in every nook and corner to satiate their daily dose of cricket. With IPL the scenario is much more rampant and brands across categories are taking note of the deep and emotional impact that sporting platforms can create for their businesses.

These days, everyone is aware of the brand sensitizing that most of the advertisements flashed around cricket tournaments does. From nominating popular players as brand ambassadors to sponsoring the tournaments, brands today are utilizing every single tool that can garner better visibility for them. Given the influence that sporting platforms command, it has become essential for the brands to create an impact of their own in today’s cut-throat competition and catch eyeballs in every possible way.

With the onset of digitalization, it has proved to be a boon for advertisers by opening several avenues for brands to popularize their products. With cricket being an internationally popular sport, the graph of the popularity for brands has touched new heights. Larger visibility and presence amongst varied modes of communication has made it easy for the brands to not only make a mark for themselves in India but capture recognition across the world. For instance, the IPL has teamed up with multiple brands to reach out to a larger number of fans and also to ensure better delivery of the event.

The rise of sporting platforms as an effective marketing channel is evident from the range of brands supporting or sponsoring the ongoing IPL this year. From Vivo to Hotstar and Haier to Swiggy brands across different segments are supporting the event in one way or another.

If reports are to be believed, the General Entertainment Channels (GECs) are facing a huge competition from the growing popularity of the sporting platforms. One of the major reasons for that has been the growing popularity of cricket amongst women. Resulting in strong ratings of the ongoing IPL on television. As per Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC) India data provided by the broadcaster, in the first two weeks, IPL 2019 has clocked an average viewership growth of 21% over last year for first 17 matches, while the reach has gone up by almost 14%.

Cricket is not a just-another-popular sport. It has an emotional relevance for every Indian irrespective of the class, gender or economic background one belongs to. With every six or a four, cricket fans are enthralled with excitement and don’t leave a single chance to showcase support for their favourite players. The sentiments will rise high once again during the upcoming ICC Cricket World Cup 2019. The cricket fever is here to stay and so does the phenomenon of brands utilizing the sporting platforms as a potent way to connect with consumers.

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