Media planners optimistic of FIFA World Cup ratings to go up by 20-30 pc in subsequent matches

Will soccer fever match the cricket craze in the country? The first five matches of the ongoing FIFA World Cup in South Africa have seen sluggish ratings. However, as favourites surge ahead, media planners are confident that ratings would pick up by 20-30 per cent in the coming days.

e4m by Khushboo Tanna
Updated: Jun 18, 2010 8:38 AM
Media planners optimistic of FIFA World Cup ratings to go up by 20-30 pc in subsequent matches

The FIFA World Cup craze is catching on. The event, being held in South Africa, has reached out to approximately 19.7 million people in the first two days as opposed to 14.6 million people in 2006 and has seen a growth of 35 per cent in the reach (TAM Sports, CS 4+, All India Market).

The tournament, being telecast on ESPN, has seen a slew of advertisers. As per TAM Sports, the top categories of advertisers are cellular phones, cellular phone services, two-wheelers, and aerated and non-aerated soft drinks, in that order. The top five advertisers in this space are Bharti Airtel, Vodafone Essar, Nokia Corporation, Hero Honda Motors and Samsung India Electronics.

The opening ceremony drew a TVR of 0.6 this year, a notch lower that the opening ceremony in 2006, which had received a TVR of 0.7. The highest TVR so far (1.6) has been recorded for the match between Argentina and Nigeria. This is a far cry from 2006, where the match between Germany and Costa Rica got 2.3 TVR. The match between South Africa and Mexico in 2010 got 1.5 TVR, while the matches between Korea Republic and Greece and England and USA got a rating of 0.6 TVR. However, it is essential to note that TAM expanded their universe size subsequently between 2006 and 2010.

While those ratings managed to give an average TVR of 1, the average TVR for the first five matches and the opening ceremony in 2006 was 1.3.

Media planners are not too happy with the first set of numbers, but expect them to get better as the event progresses.

Nikhil Rangnekar, Executive Director, India West, Starcom Worldwide, said, “Compared to the overall feeling that popularity of football has increased in the last few years, driven by the premier league matches and other club level football, I think the TVRs are disappointing. I would have expected them to be at least at par with, if not more than the 2006 ratings.” He added that he would expect the TVRs to go up as the event progressed.

As far as each market is concerned, Assam and Kerala have recorded the highest TVRs of 5.6 and 4.2, respectively. West Bengal follows closely in the third spot with 4.1 TVR, while Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh and Karnataka come in fourth with a huge decline at 0.8 TVR. Bihar has recorded the lowest TVR at 0.01.

Commenting on the numbers, Rajneesh Chaturvedi, National Director, MEC Access, said that the market for this sport would ideally be the metros. He added, “The ratings are slightly lower than what we had expected. However, these are just the first five matches and I expect the ratings to increase by at least 20-30 per cent in the subsequent matches.”

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