Majority of Indians rooting for IPL4: MEC study

By afaqs! news bureau , afaqs!, Mumbai | In Media Publishing | May 26, 2010
MEC's post-IPL study finds that 87 per cent viewers are looking forward to more seasons of the IPL as the competition between teams intensifies

The expectations from the third edition of the Indian Premier League were high as the tournament returned to India this year. MEC's post-IPL research infers that more than 66 per cent consumers interviewed watched more number of matches this year than last year. The reasons ranged from the tournament returning to India to better performances by teams to greater interest to celebrity coverage. Men and youth and consumers from SEC AB watched more IPL than others, the study says. The overall average TVR of the matches was 12 per cent higher than IPL2 matches - but 5 per cent lower than the inaugural season of the tournament.

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In terms of brand recall through IPL associations, DLF and Vodafone continue to be top of mind. But the measure of recall was lower than last season. Vodafone is the most recalled brand, followed by DLF, Nokia, Hero Honda and Kingfisher. Brands such as Aircel, Samsung, Videocon and LG gained the most on recall. Videecon's recall went up from 5 per cent pre-IPL to 46 per cent post IPL. Brands such as Maxx, Spice, ICICI and Whirlpool had their recall spiral from zero to 22-29 per cent. Samsung, Nokia, LG and Pepsi are brands that have increased recall over the last two seasons consecutively.

DLF is the most recalled brand even when it comes to on-ground association, followed by Vodafone, Nokia and Hero Honda. Among on-air association, Vodafone leads, followed by Nokia, LG, Samsung, Idea. It makes good sense to be active on-air as well as on-ground. Brands such as Kingfisher, Nokia, Hero Honda and Aircel which were active on both have benefitted the most. "Neither of these brands were the top on-air advertisers. But because of their right mix of team associations, activations to go along with TV advertising, they have come out winners," says Shubha George, chief operating officer, South Asia, MEC. Vodafone is a classic case of highest recall, but hitting a plateau. "There is a clear need to relook at on-air/on-ground/team mix for such high recall brands as Vodafone. The same will prove inefficient in Season 4," George adds.

The study also reveals that four of the ten most advertised brands - Tata Photon Plus, Docomo, Hyundai and Havells - failed to capitalise on recall. Among the three mobile handsets that were launched during IPL - Karbonn, Maxx and Micromax - only Maxx was recalled by respondents. Among brand and team associations, Nokia and Kolkata Knight Riders leads, followed by Aircel and Chennai Super Kings. But respondents were able to identify more associations compared to last season.

Fatigue seems like a distant enemy for the tournament: 87 per cent respondents believe that IPL will be more interesting as the seasons progress. Increased competition among teams emerged as the key reason, followed by new franchises and increase in home team loyalties. And speaking of loyalties and popularity, Sachin Tendulkar and Mumbai Indians emerged as the most popular player and team, post IPL3.

Incidentally, this season, IPL fans were offered newer avenues to watch IPL, with multiplexes and websites screening the matches live. Yet, neither saw heavy traffic. In-home viewing remained the primary source of viewing IPL matches, with as much as 91 per cent respondents watching the tournament from the comfort of their couches.