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MAX closes 85% inventory for IPL3; frenzy builds up over homecoming

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MAX closes 85% inventory for IPL3; frenzy builds up over homecoming

‘Boy, did we miss you…’ that’s the campaign line adopted for the Indian Premier League (IPL) as the tournament returns to Indian soil for Season 3. While the inaugural season of IPL was a runaway success and Season 2, too, did fairly well despite the tournament being shifted to South Africa, the third edition is being celebrated as the homing coming season, hence expectations are quite high.

While MAX, the exclusive broadcaster of DLF IPL, has already launched the first phase of the campaign for Season 3, the second phase of the campaign is set to be launched in February 2010. The third edition of IPL is expected to be bigger and better than its previous two editions. MAX is said to have seen good growth this season in terms of its ad rates over IPL 2, in fact, ad rates for Season 3 are said to be nearly Rs 4.50 lakh. MAX has also reportedly sold out nearly 85 per cent of its inventories.

Speaking to exchange4media, Rohit Gupta, President - Network Sales, Licensing and Telephony, Sony Entertainment Television, said, “We have been on Season 3 for a long time. In terms of advertisers, we have been in the market since July 2009. IPL3, being comeback after IPL2, where the tournament was shifted to South Africa, is certainly expected to be bigger and far better than the previous two seasons. You will see a lot more marketing happening around IPL3, and as far as inventories are concerned, we got a lot of spot buys with brands like Aircel, Tata Docomo, Bisleri, Castrol, etc. We have got around 85 per cent sellout.”

MAX has roped in Vodafone and Videocon as the presenting sponsors, besides Pepsi, Hyundai, LG, Samsung, HUL and Godrej. MSM has bagged the IPL broadcast rights for 10 years and while the creative agency of MSM is JWT, OMD India is the media agency. The tournament is slated to be held between March 12, 2010 and April 25, 2010.

Media planners all excited

Rajneesh Chaturvedi, National Director, MEC Access, noted, “The first edition of IPL was a runaway success and the second edition had to move out of the country. This edition, we feel, will deliver not only the required ratings, but this time there will be a lot of on-ground activations as well, and we are all looking forward to a lot more exciting stuff in Season 3. I believe this property is here to stay.”

According to R Venkata Subramanian, VP, Lintas Media Group, “In my opinion, the third season will do better than Season 2 for two reasons; one, because the last season the tournament was held in South Africa. This edition, the ratings would be higher than last season, I believe these numbers will go up at least 10-15 per cent, and since the timing will be primetime, the ratings are bound to go up.”

“I doubt five years down the line, the craze for IPL will come down at least 20-30 per cent. In fact, it is because last year the tournament was in South Africa, this year the interest level will go up again. However, with more teams coming up and the number of matches likely to being increased in future, these will contribute to the low interest level among viewers,” he noted.

Kunal Jamuar, GM, Madison Media, observed, “IPL was successful in two years and this year, too, it will work well since its home coming season, and because of the buzz being created. Coming home does add some intangible benefits, but more importantly, there are far more primetime matches, which will probably be more beneficial and see far higher ratings than last year.”

On IPL a few years down the line, Jamuar said, “IPL is good for cricket and television viewership. A few years down the line, I believe it will grow, however, the problem is how much one can milk the same thing time and again. I fear the IPL Board is going a little overboard in trying to monetise everything they are doing. Hence, if the greed does not affect, I think one IPL a year is a good thing.”

Media planners not only expect the interest levels among viewers to go up for IPL3, but are confident of seeing an increase in the ratings, especially because Season 3 is being celebrated as the home coming season. However, whether IPL would continue to remain as huge a property a few years down the line remains to be seen.

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