cricket, it's now Indian football. Starting January 10, Zee Sports will telecast live around 45 of the 90 matches in the ONGC Cup National Football League. The channel has some interesting marketing plans to make the event more popular with its viewers.
Himanshu Mody, business head, Zee Sports, says, "Zee Sports will present Indian football in a high quality format at viewer friendly times with in-depth analysis. To promote the event across the country, we are undertaking a marketing campaign that will involve all three elements - on-air, off-air and online.
The channel has roped in David Horridge to produce the telecast for the League along with international commentators such as John Helm and Russell Osman. Horridge is involved in directing the Champions League matches in the UK.
The telecast package includes preview and review shows along with half match analyses. And to add a 'much-needed' element of glamour, all these shows will be anchored by the channel's well-known anchor, Mayanti Langer.
Gaurav Seth, vice-president, marketing, Zee Sports, says, "The glamour factor plays an important role in our marketing campaign. We will be promoting the game by promoting the heroes (players) of the sport. In fact, the tagline of the league is 'Superstars' Super League'.
Seth adds, "We will also hold extensive outdoor campaigns such as road shows, match screenings in pubs and in-stadia entertainment in the form of the ZeeBras (a group of cheerleaders groomed by the channel to popularise football)."
The tenth edition of the National Football League (NFL) will be telecast in two phases - January 10 to February 9 and March 12 to May 14. Ten teams are participating in the event.
For the record, in September 2005, Zee Sports signed a ten-year agreement with the All India Football Federation (AIFF). The channel's advertising is handled by FCB Ulka, while its media business is looked after by Madison.
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