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IPL-2016 Hindi GECs plummet 10-14% in viewership as IPL's popularity soars

Hindi GECs plummet 10-14% in viewership as IPL's popularity soars

Author | Madhuwanti Saha | Tuesday, May 17,2016 8:04 AM

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Hindi GECs plummet 10-14% in viewership as IPL's popularity soars

The third week of Vivo IPL consisting of 25 matches had a cumulative reach of 297 million. Aired across Sony Max, Sony Six, Sony Six HD, Sony ESPN and Sony ESPN HD, it registered a total of 147 million impressions according to BARC.

IPL in its ninth season continues to be a hot property for advertisers who flock to it irrespective of the several controversies, like the betting scandal leading to the ban of Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals from the tournament and Pepsi backing out from the title sponsorship spot.

 With already Rs 1200 crore spent on advertising and sponsorships, brands like Vivo, Housing.com, LYF and Havmor have used the platform to launch their maiden television commercials with the title sponsor Vivo alone allocating Rs 200 crore for brand promotion during IPL. It’s paying also. According to media reports the first 25 matches registered a total of 147 million impressions, compared with 123 million impressions during the entire T20 World Cup.

But is the league having an impact on the Hindi GECs especially on their primetime slots?

From the BARC data we gathered for the time slot between 8 pm to 11.40 pm (when IPL is played), for the first three weeks into the tournament, the answer is not definite. While movie channel Sony Max witnessed its viewership having a five-fold jump from 129 million impressions in Week 14 (April 2-8) to 656 million impressions on Week 15 (April 9-15) around the start of IPL, Star Plus recorded a minor 10 per cent fall in viewership. Even Zee TV and Sony TV saw its ratings taking a hit by 12 and 14 per cent respectively. Interestingly, Colors ratings hiked up from Week 14’s 337 million impressions to 340 million impressions in week 15 but later on it fell to 332 million impressions. Even sports channel Sony Six saw its ratings escalate almost seven times from 9 million impressions to 63 million impressions.

  Wk 14 Wk 15 Wk 16 Wk 17
Channels Impressions´000 {Sum} Impressions´000 {Sum} Impressions´000 {Sum} Impressions´000 {Sum}
Sony MAX 129,951 656,041 634,284 621,127
Colors 337,906 340,350 332,071 333,551
Zee TV 297,729 261,882 250,348 253,255
STAR Plus 253,904 226,399 209,243 218,526
Sony Entertainment Television 113,294 97,087 98,589 156,700
Sony SIX 9,482 63,615 37,252 38,572

By week 16 (April 16-22) almost all the channels saw their ratings taking a hit in that slot except Sony TV whose ratings increased from 97 million impressions in Week 15 to 98 million impressions in Week 16. Sony Six’s ratings faced the worst hit from Week 15’s 63 million impressions to 37 million impressions.

Commenting on the impact of IPL on GEC’s, Anita Nayyar, CEO, Havas Media Group, India & South Asia said, “I think there will be a slight impact. Shows that are not doing well will take a further dip. But the ones with high viewership will not see much of a dent as there is the loyalty factor across these shows and high stickiness too. IPL is an event where you can always go back to the scores. But people will continue viewing the popular shows and keep going back to the scores in between.”

The ratings of popular shows topping BARC charts are in sync with Nayyar’s views. According to week 17 of the BARC data, Colors show ‘Naagin’ topped the chart with 16 million impressions. However, for week 16, it dipped a bit, yet retaining the number one spot at 15 million ratings. It had acquired 16 million impressions for the week previous to that (week 15).

Shekhar Banerjee, COO, Madison Media Infinity adds, “This fast food format of cricket (IPL) has positioned itself as a complete family entertainer with significant viewership from females too. Given that many households, specially a good chunk of single TV households, are happy to replace prime time GEC shows with IPL. However, this is not a new phenomenon and we have seen this trend across all IPL seasons.”

 Week 17 (April 23-29) saw a turn of events with only Sony Max’s ratings drop from 634 million to 621 million impressions while the GECs witnessed a jump in their ratings. Sony Entertainment Television recorded a noticeable surge in their ratings from 98 million impressions to 156 million impressions, which can be attributed to the launch of its new primetime weekend show, ‘The Kapil Sharma Show’ on April 23.  The show recorded an average of almost 9 million impressions on the opening weekend. On the other hand, even the sports channel Sony Six saw its ratings increase from previous week’s 37 million to 38 million impressions.

With both GECs and IPL broadcasters seeing a zig-zag pattern in their ratings, it will be interesting to see how it will fare by the time IPL wraps up on May 29. 

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