Star Sports speculated to earn Rs 3 crore ad revenue from ICC Women’s World Cup

ICC Women’s World Cup has turned out to be a success both on the network and its OTT platform Hotstar with the Indian team’s stupendous performance in the tournament

e4m by Madhuwanti Saha
Updated: Jul 26, 2017 8:02 AM

Star Sports 2 and Star Sports 2 HD are speculated to earn Rs 3 crore collectively in advertising revenue from the ICC Women’s World Cup, out of which Rs 2 crore has come from the final (India vs. England on July 23) itself, according to industry sources. They mentioned that the official ad rate was Rs 10,000 for a 30-second spot while India matches commanded Rs 15,000 for the same time frame.

It still has a long way to go if compared with the ad rates of the ICC Champions Trophy India-Pakistan final (on Star Sports), which skyrocketed by 10 times to Rs 1.2 crore for 30 seconds during the India-Pakistan final on June 18.

However, media planners are optimistic about the Indian women’s cricket team, considering its performance. In fact, this was India’s second-ever entry into a Women’s World Cup final since 2005. Dinesh Vyas, Associate VP (Planning), OMD, says, “It was an opportunity for everyone because this is the first time women’s cricket has done so well. Star definitely wanted to make most out of the opportunity. Also, there was enough time for the finals. I think the interest picked up after the semi final when we won against Australia. That was the turning point.”

The usual big players like Samsung, Vivo, Nissan, Maruti Nexa Ciaz and Hero were seen advertising. Vyas adds, “Moreover, people who were global partners Nissan Datsun bought on air because it’s a great opportunity for them.”

K Srinivas Rao, National Director - Buying at MediaCom, noticed another interesting trend. “Couple of FMCG brands were advertising more or less for the first time on cricket, especially women’s cricket with specific communication (from a female point of view). In fact, I have never seen them on sports. This is purely because of the team’s performance. Conversations around the World Cup and the women’s cricket team also helped.”

Vyas also points out that with the increasing popularity and viewership of the women’s cricket team, it might be looked upon as a separate advertising avenue for brands. “As a media person, if I am advertising any product I might consider women’s cricket team, not just during World Cup but also during games with other countries.  In addition, people have started recognising the Indian cricket captain and other team members. Next year, they will look forward to it.  So, another opportunity has been created for media people. If the team continues to do well they won’t mind sponsoring them or their tournaments for sure.”

Srinivas adds to this, “If the following increases, getting brands on board will be easier for the channel as well.”

Both Vyas and Srinivas are positive about the potential of women’s cricket. Vyas says, “The next World Cup onwards, Star will see to it that it becomes a high-selling property. They will see to it that they sell it separately and make more money out of it.”

Srinivas also cited the success of Pro Kabaddi League as an example and felt it can be repeated with women’s cricket if marketed well. “In the future if BCCI and networks like Star put their might behind this sport with respect to packaging and promoting then I don’t see any reason why it can’t be a success.”

The success was seen on Star India’s OTT platform Hotstar as well where the tournament was live streamed. The ICC Women’s World Cup 2017 final between India and England peaked in the contentious 48th over with India needing 11 runs to win off 12 balls, recording a peak concurrency of 1.9 million simultaneous viewers. This was higher than the average concurrency of many of the marquee men’s cricket tournaments on Hotstar in the last year, a feat in its own right. UP and Maharashtra contributed to 25 per cent of the total viewership.

On social media too, they have been trending with #WWC17Final being one of the top trends for nearly two days. Despite their loss, the Indian cricket team received huge support from Prime Minister Narendra Modi, fellow cricketers, Bollywood stars and fans.

With added inputs from Abhinn Shreshtha and Venkata Susmita Biswas

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