The Indian Premier League (IPL) is the most expensive property on TV with advertising rates ranging between Rs 10 and Rs 12 lakh for a 10-second spot. Despite the charges, the most-watched TV event has been able to deliver a phenomenal return on investment for brands.
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The opening match for this season was watched by 200 million on both TV and digital put together. Though the overall digital viewership breakup is still not officially available, it is being roughly expected that a little less than 10% of the total viewership came via Disney+Hotstar. Last year during the final match of the season, the OTT platform attracted a little less than 19 million viewers.
So how are brands gaining from advertising on the OTT platform during the matches?
Pradeep Cholayil, Chairman and Managing Director, Cholayil Private Limited, said, “Since Medimix is the official hygiene and skinfit partner of Kolkata Knight Riders and Disney+Hotstar being one of the hottest places to watch IPL among the youth, it makes a great proposition to advertise on Disney+Hotstar during IPL. It seamlessly cuts across the geographies and demographics to attain the higher reach. This is the first time we are advertising on any OTT platform and we look forward to a great campaign.”
According to Anisha Aggarwal, Country Media Lead, IPL will be a fresh change and will not just attract cricket lovers but also people who are looking for some fun and entertainment, resulting in superlative reach. “Partnerships with OTTs/digital platforms will help in bringing new customers and establish high recall,” she said.
Experts said that the new-age digital brands are gaining the most in terms of engagement. As per industry estimates, the ad rates for digital are almost one tenth of TV. However, if bought together with TV, it could be even cheaper for brands.
Srivats TS, VP, Marketing, Swiggy, said, “Disney+ Hotstar will play a crucial role in engaging with our audience. OTT platforms cover the bulls-eye TG for us — we are able to reach out to them during prime hours via programming like IPL, enhancing the overall experience by matching food and entertainment.”
Some advertisers are hoping that the digital viewership for the tournament is likely to cross more than 20 million viewers as a peak during some of the matches.
Ashish Mishra, Executive VP, Acko, said, "We are anticipating a huge surge in online viewership of IPL on the Disney+ Hotstar platform. For a young brand like ours, we are really hoping that this will drive brand discovery and provide a massive boost in brand awareness.”
Acko has also launched its new marketing campaign, ‘Car insurance ke tedhe games’, with the start of IPL.
Disney+Hotstar is hoping to add another million or two paid subscribers to its overall subscription base during the tournament. The platform has one of highest subscriber bases in India.
Aparna Mahesh, CMO, Great Learning, said, “As India’s leading company in the online professional and higher education space, the partnership with Hotstar for IPL is a natural fit for us. Digital is the first port of call for our TG. IPL is going to be the first live cricket event happening after several difficult months for the nation and it also coincides with the festive season for the first time. So, we are sure that the viewership will be at an all-time high.”
Explaining why advertising during the IPL is significant, Arjun Mohan, CEO, upGrad, said, “IPL enjoys vast viewership across the globe, not only for cricket fans but also for all members of the house, making it perhaps the largest co-viewing property in the world. It is also the most opportune occasion to reach out to individuals, reminding them about the urgency to upskill and prepare themselves for the forthcoming competitive world.”
“The right platform thereby helps us in reaching out to a larger set of audiences residing in the remotest corners of Bharat,” he added.