Can digital compete with TV for sports revenues?

Digital sports viewership has been increasing significantly year over year, even though TV still has a larger audience than all other media

e4m by Sonam Saini
Published: Dec 6, 2022 8:49 AM  | 6 min read
sports

When Viacom18 won the digital media rights for Indian Premier League (IPL) in June this year for Rs 23,758 crore, which was marginally higher than TV rights won by Disney-Star India for Rs 23,575, it demonstrated the potential that the industry was seeing in the online medium. 

Digital sports viewership has been increasing significantly year over year, even though TV still has a larger audience than all other media, with 900 million viewers overall compared to 450-500 million monthly active users online. Will the steady rise in sports viewership on digital pose a competition to television in terms of revenues? Not in the near future, say experts. According to industry watchers, digital sports viewership is increasing faster than TV but digital sports revenue is unlikely to catch up with that of TV anytime soon.


Rise in OTT viewership & CTV

Industry experts believe the growth of the digital medium will be fuelled by an organic rise in OTT viewers in India as well as an increase in sports consumption on OTT.

According to the CII-KPMG 2022, ad revenues for sports properties on digital platforms are expected to be driven by strong advertiser interest in sports than for other content genres. Additionally, subscription revenues for sports are expected to grow as OTT subscriptions increase and these platforms make a concerted effort to transition to a SVOD future.

Vibhor Gauba, Associate Partner, Deal Advisory- M&A Consulting, KPMG in India, however believes that a material shift in advertising monies from TV to digital for the sports genre is unlikely in the near to medium term at least. 

“This difference in sports viewership is also reflected in the advertiser interest as many traditional and digital first brands, still look to TV as the platform to reach the largest audience,” he says.

According to the CII-KPMG 2022 report, only 10 million Indians have connected TVs, which is a result of low fixed broadband penetration and relatively high entry costs. This suggests that TV will continue to rule as a media platform when combined with structural barriers to cord cutting.

“TV is the first choice of advertisers due to its large reach and positive impact on brand KPIs. Advertisers across traditional brands like BFSI, beverages, FMCG, paints, auto, handsets and the new-age categories like online shopping, fintech, edtech, health tech, gaming, and fantasy have leveraged the reach of TV to build brands,” shares Gauba.


Sports on TV will remain relevant 

According to GroupM-ESP Sporting Nation's Making 2022 report, overall digital ad spend in 2021 was Rs 965 crore, more than doubling the value in 2020, accounting for 16% of total media expenses by brands. While both TV and digital ad spends on sports exceeded their 2019 levels, digital ad spends increased by more than 100%.


Sports is the most loved genre on TV with over 730 million viewers in 2022, which is a growth of 21% over 2021, said a senior executive of a leading sports broadcaster. According to him, the overall TV universe stands tall at 900 million with enormous headroom to grow. In fact, 400 million TV viewers don’t even have access to digital video, he said.

“TV is growing and has in fact added 100 million premium NCCS AB viewers in the last three years, which is close to the size of the total OTT subscribers in the country,” shares the executive.

According to the data accessed by e4m, viewership of cricket on TV is on the rise, breaking all-time records. For instance, there was 36% increase in TV ratings of Ind-Aus T20 vs 2019 (highest cume. reach for T20 series),  Asia Cup 2022 had 12% higher TV ratings vs Asia Cup 2016, Ind-SA series in Sep '22 recorded 47% higher TV ratings vs June ‘22. 

A report by KPMG-Sports broadcasting on TV - A match made in heaven, predicted that digital revenues for sports are likely to see robust growth, but would still be roughly half of the TV revenues by FY26. The digital revenue for sports is estimated to grow from Rs 1,540 crore in FY21 to Rs 4,360 crore in FY26, at a CAGR of 22 per cent. 

According to Vibhor Gauba, Associate Partner, Deal Advisory- M&A Consulting, KPMG in India, sports broadcasting on television reaches a far higher audience than OTT platforms at present (close to 2x). This is also reflected in the numbers, wherein the TV sports broadcasting market is mature in terms of the revenues, and with a steady growth, is likely to be higher than the OTT/digital sports streaming market in the near to medium future.

Gauba further shared that while it is a fact that viewership on digital platforms, when it comes to sports, is rising faster than TV (also due to the low base effect), it is unlikely that sports viewership on digital will surpass that on TV in the near to medium term. “TV remains one of the most affordable platforms of entertainment in the country. If you add the subscription costs of major platforms that stream sports and broadband cost, the overall value comes to 3.5-4x that of a monthly TV subscription.”

TV still a preferred medium over digital 


Digital sports revenues will take some time to catch up with TV revenues, says a senior industry observer on the condition of anonymity.

“Without a doubt, digital viewership and revenues are rising, but it will take some time before they even approach TV revenues. I don't believe that TV will ever stop being a preferred medium for brands across all genres, including sports,” he adds. 

Karan Taurani, SVP, Elara Capital, too believes that it's a long way for digital sports revenue to touch TV revenues. “IPL today is making close to Rs 3000-4000 crore revenues, including advertising and subscription, whereas Hotstar is making Rs 1500-1600 crore,” he shares.

“So, even if sports on digital grows at close to 30%for the next three years, it would still be lower than TV because television is also growing by 10-12%. TV as a medium has seen a negative impact because of cord cutting, but sports is one genre which is very consumed on TV because of its live content nature,” explains Taurani.

He further adds, “In terms of content cost, TV and digital are close to 50-50%, but in terms of monetisation there is a big gap. Digital viewership is already at par with TV and might cross TV viewership, but for digital to make that kind of ad dollar, is tough. It's a highly competitive segment.”    

 

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Gunjan Taneja quits WION as VP & Head of Global Sales

Taneja joined WION in August 2020

By Ruhail Amin | Jan 27, 2023 1:45 PM   |   1 min read

Gunjan Taneja

Gunjan Taneja, Vice President and Head of Global Sales WION has stepped down from her role.

Taneja confirmed this development to e4m. She joined WION in August 2020 and was associated with the channel till Novemeber 2022.

Prior to joining WION, Taneja was Sales Director at Republic World for over three years. She has also served two stints at NDTV and worked with Aidem Ventures and Zee Media in the past.

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Zee Media’s Daiba Pradeep Roy joins Mitwa TV as National Sales Head

Roy has more than 21 years of experience in media sales.

By exchange4media Staff | Jan 27, 2023 12:00 PM   |   1 min read

Daiba Pradeep Roy

Daiba Pradeep Roy who was the National Sales Accounts Head with Zee Media Corporation has joined Mitwa TV as National Sales Head.

Mitwa TV is a new age subscription free premium OTT platform for 45+ Crore audiences spread across Hindi Heartland. Roy will lead the sales team nationally and be responsible for revenue generation at MitwaTV.

A veteran media professional, Daiba has more than 21 years of experience in media sales. Prior to his tenure in ZMCL, Pradeep was heading the Business Team, at ETV a Subsidiary of Network 18 Media, where he was designated as Business Head.

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‘GEC genre ad volume went up in 2022’

According to a TAM AdEx report, 2022 saw GEC claiming the highest share, 28.5%, in overall TV ad volumes since 2018

By exchange4media Staff | Jan 27, 2023 8:50 AM   |   2 min read

TV

The general entertainment channel (GEC) genre witnessed a 2% increase in ad volume in 2022 compared to 2021. According to TAM AdEx - Rewinding 2022 for GEC Channel Genre on TV report, 2022 had the highest ad volumes since 2018, with a 29% increase in 2022 compared to 2018.

As per the report, the third and fourth quarters of the year 2022 saw more ad volumes than the first and second. The report also stated that 2022 saw the highest GEC share i.e 28.5% of overall TV ad volumes since 2018.  

During both 2022 and 2021, Hindi GEC topped with more than 20% share of the GEC channel genre’s ad volumes. The top five subgenres accounted for around 69% share of ad volumes during 2022. 

Meanwhile, the count of categories and advertisers on the GEC genre dropped in Q3-Q4 '22 over Q2’22, whereas the count of brands peaked in Q3 '22. As per the report, Food & Beverages sector topped with 28% share of the GEC genre’s ad volumes, followed by Personal Care/Personal Hygiene with 20% share. Additionally, Biscuits and Aerated Soft Drinks were the new entrants among the top 10 categories. 

HUL, Reckitt Benckiser and Brooke Bond Lipton India retained their top three positions as advertisers during both 2021-22. Coca-Cola India and Procter & Gamble Home Products were the new entrants among the top 10 advertisers in 2022. Also, over 2800 advertisers were present on GEC on 2022. 

Meanwhile, over 800 exclusive advertisers were present on GEC with  Ullu Digital leading the list in GEC genre followed by Mangalam Matrimony.com.

Over 5600 brands advertised on GEC in 2022 with Dettol Antiseptic Liquid leading the top brand list followed by Harpic Power Plus 10x Max Clean. Also the top four brands were from Reckitt Benckiser (India).

 

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‘IPL on TV provides scale and impact for brands across categories’

At e4m TV First conference, a diverse panel of brand leaders touched upon how associating with IPL on television brings instant reach at scale and unlocks newer audiences for their brands

By exchange4media Staff | Jan 25, 2023 7:20 PM   |   4 min read

tv first panel

IPL on television has been an advertiser’s delight across categories. The sheer scale of the platform and its ability to drive instant results for brands makes it a preferred medium for impact.  At the e4m TV First conference held in Mumbai on Tuesday, a panel discussion was held on the topic, ‘Television - The chosen destination for IPL viewing.’ The panel was chaired by Vanita Keswani, CEO, Madison Media Sigma - Madison World and consisted of Anjali Krishnan, Head of Media, Mondelez India, Ajay Dang, President, Head - Marketing, Ultratech - Aditya Birla Group, Lalitha Nayak, In Charge - Marketing, NPCI, Nilesh Malani, CMO, Polycab and Girish Hingorani, Head - Marketing & Ecommerce, Cooling & Purification Appliances Group, Blue Star Limited.

Ajay Dang started the discussion with his thoughts on television advertising on IPL, which according to him, is distinct for brands in terms of viewer receptiveness and engagement. “IPL on television is a brilliant platform in terms of the number of eyeballs and effective storytelling of brand messaging. I think as marketers, there are a few shining examples like Mondelez, which have leveraged the platform fabulously well. It is a fabulous platform to engage with viewers.”

Nilesh Malani then spoke about how Polycab built their brand at the back of IPL associations on television since 2018. “At Polycab, the brand building exercise started maybe a decade ago. The philosophy was let's reach out to the heartland of the country from a distribution point of view and supply chain point of view. That's where we started going to consumers and we wanted to reach out in the most effective and faster way. IPL on TV gave us the best reach in the shortest period of time. So that's the reason we chose IPL. Then in 2019, we went public. And again, we wanted to reach out to consumers with a larger portfolio of products. That's where we decided to continue our journey on IPL.”

Anjali Krishnan gave some valuable insights in terms of how brands can best creatively leverage IPL on television. “We have launched all our new campaigns on our proposition of ‘acknowledging the unacknowledged’ through IPL on TV. We’ve observed over the past few years of partnering with Star Sports for IPL that the effectiveness of our campaigns was twice as they were compared to any other inventory we bought. IPL on TV is the ideal platform to launch new brand communications. It gives you a great reach in a very short period. New users that brands want to reach out to are present on IPL on TV. IPL on TV has played a pivotal role in brand building for Cadbury Dairy Milk.”

Girish Hingorani, who has been a strong believer in IPL on TV as a media property since its inception, spoke about how the platform has been a key factor in the success of Bluestar over the years. “We’ve been advertising on IPL on TV since 2008 and have leveraged the platform every year since. IPL on TV brings the country together and associating with a platform like this brings a lot of gravitas to a brand. We have focused on consistently creating good content and IPL on television has provided the largest platform for us to launch new communication every summer.”

Lalitha Nayak went on to talk about how the demographic profiling for Rupay matched with IPL TV audiences and how the association helped the brand launch new products successfully. “We launched our ‘Rupay - On The Go’ proposition last summer through IPL on television. Demographic compatibility is a key factor for us when we look at platforms to advertise on and IPL on television was a match for us. We advertised on IPL on digital as well, but saw a high recall for the brand after we begun the TV association. IPL on TV is a clutter breaking phenomenon if you can create good content that blends in.”

 

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‘TV is by far the most powerful and effective in building equity and awareness’

At e4m TV First conference, industry experts discusse how TV is still a strong medium over digital media to reach a wider audience in India

By exchange4media Staff | Jan 25, 2023 7:10 PM   |   5 min read

Tv first

Due to the pandemic, digital media has become an easy as well as affordable medium for brands to reach out consumers without much hassle. However, TV still has a strong presence in Indian households. Advertisers across genres prefer TV over any other medium in order to increase their credibility amongst consumers.

At the recently held e4m TV First conference, industry leaders discussed why TV is still a preferred medium and how advertisers are making the most out of it. The panel discussion was moderated by Dheeraj Sinha, CEO & The Chief Strategy Officer, South Asia, Leo Burnett; Chairman, BBH India. The panel consisted of Sambit Dash, Partner - RPSG Capital Ventures, Girish Hingorani, Head - Marketing & Ecommerce, Cooling & Purification Appliances Group, Blue Star Limited, Gaurav Dhawan, Chief Revenue Officer, Times Network, Rajan Amba, VP-Sales, Marketing & Customer Service - Tata Motors Ltd- Passenger Vehicles. 

Speaking on why TV is still is the popular medium, Dash of  RPSG, said, “ I think television is still the key medium for a brand to gain  the trust of consumers and create an impact. What I mean by trust is that it's just human conditioning; when you see an ad for a brand on TV, you think this brand has enough money and so must be having enough consumers and so it's big enough for me to trust. That's where the trust comes from and impact is all about reaching a large audience at the same time.”

While Amba of Tata Motors said, “I think one of the things, that we often forget is that, families take decisions, it's all not always individual. For brands like us, which are high-value purchase brands and where the decision to buy is taken by the family and not individual, TV makes a lot of sense. It's got the most widespread of a penetration in that sense and I think that it allows us to tell stories, the larger screen allows us to tell stories in a family setting in a much more inclusive way than digital does and that certainly help brands like us.” 

Hingorani of Bluestar said, “TV is by far perhaps the most powerful and effective in building equity and awareness. A brand like Bluestar has been built on television over the last two decades or so. We still kept investing on TV because as brand equity cannot be built in private and one has to be reaching out to as many consumers as you can, even if you're a B2B brand. The audio-visual experience that TV gives you, without you having that option of skipping the ads, there's nothing to beat television.”

Dhawan of Times Network said, “What TV does is, it very beautifully helps you address key behavior points so if you want to impact the behavior of any particular market, you will see that TV actually works beautifully. TV has a far bigger impact, you trust the TV word very easily, there's a lot of credibility that come with it. TV even today is the highest reached medium in India as 70% of India is connected through television in one way or the other.”

The discussion then shifted to IPL.

Speaking on the impact of IPL, Amba said, “We've been investing in IPL since 2018 as partners and not just as advertisers. We've seen some tremendous boost arising out of that. But having said that I think that every brand needs to think very carefully about that kind of investment. It is a massive investment and it's a one-time huge investment which can blow you out of the water. If you're a brand looking to make a big impact and you've got something new to offer and you can afford it, it certainly makes sense because you will get that mileage.”

Similarly Hingorani, said, “Bluestar has been on IPL ever since the first season, I've been on every season of IPL. We've been there, we're not a big brand in terms of deep pockets, we have very limited money available but we choose to use it wisely. Of course IPL has a great timing advantage for us because it's the start of the summer season, most of our campaigns are launched on IPL but what we've learned is that IPL is very different from other television advertising. One thing for IPL is that you have to acknowledge the fact that your break hours will be the lowest, which means people would want to obviously wait for the next over so they are not really going anywhere. So that advantage of engagement is there with IPL.”

The panel also discussed about Connected TV and how it is emerging in India but will take time for the masses to follow as people are becoming more accessible to broadband connections. Dhawan said, “It looks very small as we speak because not too many people into it but with the passage of time and improved data speeds, it will catch up. Right now it looks like it is in the sushi category you know good to have it sometimes but can't have it as a daily meal, someday it will become part of your daily meal.”



 

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Sesame Street co-creator Lloyd Morrisett is no more

Morrisett was known as an experimental educator for using TV as a medium of education

By exchange4media Staff | Jan 25, 2023 11:15 AM   |   1 min read

Sesame

Sesame Street's co-creator Lloyd Morrisett has passed away. He was 93.

Known as the experimental educator, Morrisett collaborated with TV producer Joan Ganz Cooney to create Sesame Street upon seeing his daughter interact with the television.

TV show Sesame Street was a big hit among children around the world.

According to Cooney, his co-founder and close friend, “Without Lloyd Morrisett, there would be no Sesame Street. It was he who first came up with the notion of using television to teach pre-schoolers basic skills, such as letters and numbers."

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GroupM’s Motion Content Group to launch new show featuring India’s influential leaders

‘Jai Ho! Bharat Ki Anant Yatra’ is being launched in association with Google and Meta

By exchange4media Staff | Jan 25, 2023 10:09 AM   |   2 min read

GroupM

GroupM's Motion Content Group, in partnership with Google and Meta, is launching a new show, "Jai Ho! Bharat Ki Anant Yatra," in collaboration with Optimum Television.

The show, a tribute to the contribution that the Indian civilization has made to the world, takes viewers on a journey through India's past, present, and future.

"Jai Ho! Bharat Ki Anant Yatra" will feature some of the most influential and accomplished leaders from various fields in India, who are the baton holders of the country's culture and heritage.

The show will comprise 3 episodes for a duration of 1 hour each. It will be aired on Zee TV SD, Zee TV HD, Zee Cinema HD, & TV, Zee news, Hindustan.

The series will feature subject matter experts, historians, academicians, scientists as well as titans of Indian Industry such as Professor Yashwant Gupta, Centre for Radio Astrophysics; Dr Pratap C Reddy, Apollo Hospitals; Baba Ramdev, Yog Guru; Acharya Balkrishna, Patanjali; Professor Sunaina Singh, Nalanda University; Anil Shastri, Senior Leader of Indian National Congress; RS Sodhi, Former Managing Director, Amul; Prof V Ramgopal Rao, IIT Delhi; Professor Aral D Souza, IIM – Ahmedabad ; Dr Anil Bharadwaj, ISRO; Dr Subhash Chandra – Zee; Edward Luke-Financial Times; Sangeeta Gupta-Nasscom; Dileep Sanghvi-Sun Pharma ; G Ashok Kumar-National Water Mission on Stepwells; Salvador Lyngdohscientist on living root bridges; Deepinder Goyal- Zomato; Ruma Devi-rural entrepreneur; Motilal Oswal – Motilal Oswal Financial Services, Abhishek Singh, CEO, Digital India; Vikram Singh Bedi – MD Google cloud India.

The show is narrated by Sharad Kelkar and scripted by Prasoon Joshi. "Jai Ho! Bharat Ki Anant Yatra" will be available on Zee Network and can also be streamed on Google and Meta's platforms.

Ashwin Padmanabhan, President - Investments, Trading, and Partnerships, GroupM – India, said, “We are thrilled to announce the launch of Jai Ho! Bharat Ki Anant Yatra. This show is a celebration of the stupendous journey of Indian Civilization and its contribution to the world. The show also looks into what the future holds for India as an economic and cultural world leader. We are proud to collaborate with Google Cloud and Meta to tell this inspiring story of India." 

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