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Channels brace for marketing googly

04-September-2004
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Channels brace for marketing googly

Sachin Tendulkar’s Tennis Elbow and the Indian cricket team’s poor form could hurt television channels and colour television makers, which have invested big in the forthcoming ICC Champions Trophy.

If India makes an early exit from the tournament, SET Max risks losing a big chunk of viewers. Similarly, electronic goods giants LG and Samsung may end up missing their TV sales targets.

LG Electronics India, for instance, is one of the official sponsors of the tournament and has committed nearly Rs 50 crore to advertising and marketing promotions for cricket events to be held this year.

“Cricket-driven sales may suffer if India does badly,” said CM Singh, product group head (CTVs), LG Electronics India. The company is expected to sell more than a million units in the next two months, leading up to Diwali.

“Tendulkar’s absence and India’s poor showing will definitely impact TV ratings. There is already a sense of despondency about India’s performance in the run-up to the ICC trophy,” said Sandeep Vij, president (corporate media solutions), OMS, Mudra’s media buying agency.

“If India gets knocked out by Pakistan in its first match of the tournament, SET Max’s plans of selling reserved inventories for a premium will go for a toss,” said Vij. The channel has paid $225 million for the telecast rights of the tournament.

Cricket viewership was fairly low during the recent rain-marred Videocon Cup in Holland, despite the presence of top cricketing nations like Australia, Pakistan and India.

“During knockout events like the ICC trophy, a lot of media buying depends on sentiments. Conversely, if India manages to beat Pakistan and make it to the later stages of the tournament, it will be a windfall for SET Max,” added Vij.

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