ESS claims ad revenue growth of 25 per cent

MUMBAI: Bolstered by interactive initiatives with clients on properties like English Premier League (EPL), ESPN Star Sports (ESS) Asia has announced that it has managed a 25 per cent year on year increase in advertising revenues across the network from 1999.


It was eight years ago that Disney's ESPN merged with the Rupert Murdoch owned Star Sports. In 1999 ESS introduced its four O’s strategy which combine on air, off air, on ground and online benefits. Since then, integrated advertising on the network has risen to new levels with a growing number of brands moving from commodity-based to solution-based advertising.

ESS managing director Rik Dovey says, "ESPN Star Sports is clearly ahead of the game when it comes to delivering integrated advertising solutions. Sponsors are seeing a positive impact on their brands through our model of taking real-time live sporting action to the viewer, developing creative platforms around it and delivering an expanded sporting experience. What we do especially well for our clients is ensuring strong, measurable brand association throughout the period of their sponsorship, both on and off air."


Two great examples of integrated solutions are Cathay Pacific's on-going association with Wimbledon and Nokia's broadcast sponsorship of the EPL. ESS campaign with Nokia was recently recognised at the Casbaa Pay TV ad awards. To give an example, the show Goals showcased highlights from the EPL including goals scored and saves made.

Promos ran during the programme, inviting viewers to vote for their favourite goal, save or player shown during the programme. Soccer fans also saw real-time poll results on their screens as the votes are being cast.

Each week a Nokia 6230 mobile phone inclusive of a blue tooth headset was up for grabs. The contest was open to mobile phone subscribers in India, Hong Kong, Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and Brunei.

From eight per cent of total advertising revenues in 2002, integrated solution based sales now account for nearly half of total advertising revenues in 2004.


ESS has also reported an 81 per cent renewal rate for sponsorships and repeat advertisers on the network. Returning sponsors include Tiger Beer and Toshiba who have seen significant brand recognition, brand recall and measurable results through their sponsorship of the EPL.

Dovey added, "Sport clearly drives cable viewing in Asia. Besides having of the world’s biggest sporting properties on our network, advertisers have come to recognise our unique ability of capturing sizeable audiences across different demographic groups. The strong advertising growth we’re seeing speaks volumes of clients’ confidence in our ability to deliver the ratings, the audience as well as effective and measurable integrated solutions."

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