Television

Brands respond with optimism, as pandemic throws up new challenges

Advertisers, agencies remain confident of the reach and popularity of live sports.

https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/smartcrop_800x800/public/images/tv-images/2021/05/22/ipl.jpg?itok=MLC_DcNK

KOLKATA: The absence of live sports during the pandemic has not only been felt by fans, but by brands and advertisers alike. Even when the games returned, they remained restricted to empty stadiums with players inside a bio-bubble. Despite the challenges, sport is not losing its charm even during these uncertain times, especially cricket.

So it was no surprise, when the much-awaited Indian Premier League (IPL) broke all viewership records after its return last September. The 13th edition of the cash-rich league breathed life into the distressed advertising sector which was hit hard by the extended lockdowns. Eventually when the tournament returned this year in April, the hopes were high. But they came crashing down, when the league had to be suspended midway amid the worsening situation in the country, battling it's worst ever health crisis.

While the Board of Cricket Control in India (BCCI) is still looking for another window to finish the rest of the tournaments, advertisers remain optimistic. If the next window is in September later this year, the consumer sentiment will be at its peak, opined DDB Mudra Group Integrated Media country head, managing partner Rammohan Sundaram. The chances of reaching out to a bigger audience will increase as more people are expected to watch. So, it would be more positive for business compared to March, Sundaram added.

He was speaking at ‘Brands and live sports in the pandemic times’ organised by Indiantelevision.com, moderated by founder, CEO and editor-in-chief Anil Wanvari and attended by Havas Media Group India CEO Mohit Joshi, upGrad India CEO, Arjun Mohan, Mobile Premier League (MPL) corporate development, investors relation SVP Joe Wadakethalakal and DDB Mudra Group Integrated Media country head, managing partner Rammohan Sundaram.

"It was the right decision to not run IPL 2021 that time, as it would have appeared very tone-deaf," said upGrad India CEO Arjun Mohan. "By the time it returns, the mood of the nation will change. upGrad can look forward to creating campaigns around it."

“Keeping aside the economic situation and the mood of the country in the pandemic, I think the big breach was in regards to the bubble which should not have ideally happened. IPL is not ready to handle the pandemic situation in India,” Sundaram added.

Havas Media Group India CEO Mohit Joshi also agreed it was a good decision to take off IPL while bio bubble security was already broken. However, he noted that IPL is a very big component of P&L, it builds a strategy for the entire year. Overall, the sports genre is itself important for the agency.

Mohan also agreed that any brand that is advertising in India cannot ignore sports. Fundamentally, the way upGrad looks at live sports is the reach and width it offers, so it prefers Cricket. The brand has tried multiple other sports too like the English Premier League (EPL) which has very loyal committed fans.

However, the scale of those sports does not give many reasons for the brand to invest now. When a brand’s objective is to achieve reach through various campaigns, cricket qualifies for now. He also noted that Kabaddi may reach there in the future.

Mobile Premier League (MPL) corporate development, investors relation SVP Joe Wadakethalakal shared the increasing interest among the e-sports platform to engage with sports that have the broadest reach. So it focuses primarily on cricket for brand-building activities. It also finds value in international cricket if team India is involved.

Joshi said that he has been fortunate enough to have clients who go beyond Cricket. For example, Tata Motors associated with Kabaddi for its trucks. However, ROI and investment were very different indeed. But even brands invest in other sports, the spends are largely skewed towards cricket.

“We are planning to launch a sports marketing division. There is a holistic approach that one needs to take to understand what sporting events can deliver,” Sundaram added.

However, all the experts agreed that brands should be agile in these uncertain times. Rather than planning for the entire year, the agencies and brands should look at a month or even for two weeks. “One has to be short-term focused with a long-term strategy,” Joshi summed up.

Latest Reads

https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2021/09/22/vipul-nagar.jpg?itok=i3L9gsEW
Vipul Nagar appointed as Colors Gujarati business head

Viacom18 has announced the appointment of Vipul Nagar as business head for Colors Gujarati.

Television TV Channels Regional
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2021/09/22/photogrid_plus_1632307405113_0.jpg?itok=3XqTmiQm
Zee Entertainment is Global Citizen Live’s India broadcast partner

Mumbai: International advocacy organisation Global Citizen in partnership with Wizcraft recently announced that Mumbai will be represented in Global Citizen Live’s broadcast. The organisation, on Wednesday, said that Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd will broadcast the festival on its television...

Television TV Channels GECs
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2021/09/22/nie.jpg?itok=_a4sbcL1
Neilsen announces ‘Impressions-First Initiative’ for cross-platform measurement

Nielsen has announced that it will take the lead on an “Impressions First Initiative” to support an industry-wide move to impression-based buying and selling in local markets across the US. The move to impressions will occur in conjunction with the integration of broadband-only (BBO) homes into...

Television TV Channels Viewership
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2021/09/22/pp_0.jpg?itok=kjUh5ZpU
Zeel board approves merger proposal with SPNI

There was speculation that the investor action against the promoter family at Zee Entertainment Enterprises would force the board to take some action. And it has: early this morning Zeel announced that the board has approved a merger proposal between Sony Pictures Networks India (SPNI) and India’s...

Television TV Channels Viewership
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2021/09/21/photogrid_plus_1632223678925.jpg?itok=3ytOWJAg
Hits and Hits Movies to debut in China in October

Mumbai: Rewind Networks has announced the launch of Hits and Hits Movies on Macau Cable TV, starting 1 October.  The channels will be available in HD format and with traditional Chinese subtitles on Macau Cable TV's basic bundle on channel 46 and channel 40 for Hits and Hits Movies respectively,...

Television TV Channels English Entertainment
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2021/09/21/photogrid_plus_1632219053152.jpg?itok=ucPghXcA
Zee Hindustan concludes 'Udaan: Dare to Dream' event

Mumbai: In the last one and a half years, the Covid-19 pandemic completely shook the whole world, but some people gathered the strength in those bleak times and kept pushing to attain perfection in their respective fields. Zee Hindustan honoured the people who accelerated the country's economic...

Television TV Channels Regional
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2021/09/21/photogrid_plus_1632202465257.jpg?itok=EcHQcemj
PR Satheesh elevated as CEO of MMTV

Mumbai: Malayala Manorama Television (MMTV) has elevated PR Satheesh to the role of chief executive officer. He was previously the chief operating officer and has been associated with the media organisation since July 2014. MMTV is a Malayalam news and infotainment channel catering to audiences in...

Television TV Channels Regional
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2021/09/21/ipl2.jpg?itok=lxWW6FVT
Brands align their festive calendar as IPL 14 resumes

The 14th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 14 finally resumed on Sunday with Chennai Super Kings (CSK) beating Mumbai Indians (MI) in the first match. The cricket bonanza, which got suspended mid-way in May due to the second wave of Covid has returned to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) yet...

Television TV Channels Sports
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2021/09/20/tv9.jpg?itok=TnNyH4Lr
SAP, TV9 Network join hands to empower and celebrate India's SMEs

Mumbai: After the stupendous success of the 'Leaders of Global Bharat' series that aimed at empowering Indian SMEs hit hard by pandemic-induced lockdowns last year, TV9 Network and SAP India have again joined hands to forge two pioneering initiatives to help homegrown businesses rise and shine in...

Television TV Channels News Broadcasting

Sign up for our Newsletter

subscribe for latest stories

* indicates required