ESPN will be streaming the matches from the ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 live on their website www.espnstar.com and plans to monetise it through pre-roll, post-roll and live insertion of ads in the video stream. The monetisation of advertising is going to happen through Vdopia, which has seen a 300 per cent growth in live screening content consumption in India in the last one year.
Speaking to exchange4media, Debadutta Upadhyaya, Vdopia’s VP, said, “We are the only company that has the ability to do live ad insertion in a video stream, so for coverage of live events on the Internet, our technology is very suitable.” Upadhyaya further said, “The Internet universe is still very small compared to television, but it has high value because we have a wealth of analytical data available about the viewers, which TV cannot provide. So, while it can’t replace TV in importance for advertising, online video will only continue to grow.”
Earlier, Vdopia had handled the online advertising for the Compaq Cup Series on tensports.com in 2009, which was the first live stream of a cricket tournament in India. The company was later involved in monetising through rich media advertising during the Asia Cup Series in June 2010, and the ICC Twenty20 series on espnstar.com as well.
According to a study by Vdopia, online content usage growth has been 459 per cent on quarter over quarter, up from 195 per cent last year. Also, sport events, movies and news are the most popular uses for video streaming in India, and sports events in particular, draw huge crowds.
“A lot also depends on the timing of the matches. If it is a game taking place in the daytime, that’s where most people in India still access the Internet and will watch the match in the office. On the other hand, when they go home, they are tired and want to lean back and watch TV instead. Sporting events are definitely a big deal in India, and specially cricket. We have seen a lot of repeat advertising in the sport events area, because the advertisers see actual ROI here,” Upadhyaya added.
She went on to say that sporting events accounted for almost 50 per cent of the company’s revenue as they had a premium tag attached to them, but added that there had been significant growth in overall engagement media content.