Sony launches 'Ek India Happy Wala' campaign for Indian Premier League

By Suraj Ramnath , afaqs!, Mumbai | In Media Publishing
Last updated : March 10, 2016
Vodafone, Amazon and Oppo to be the presenting sponsors of the cricket tournament.

Sony Pictures Network (SPN) India has launched its television campaign (TVC) for the Vivo Indian Premier League (IPL) on March 8, across its network.

Of the three commercials, one is already on air, while the other two will go on air from March 11. SPN will carry out its corporate social responsibility (CSR) activities under its campaign theme 'Ek India Happy Wala' for the ninth edition of the IPL.

Vodafone, Amazon and Oppo are the presenting sponsors for the League. Apart from these, the channel has roped in Tata Sky, Free Charge, Raymonds and five other associate sponsors. Marketing spends for this year has gone up by 10 per cent.

But, what's interesting is that the new campaigns don't really connect with either the sport of cricket or the IPL as in the previous years.

Talking about the brief given to the agency, Neeraj Vyas, senior executive vice-president and business head of the Sony MAX cluster, Sony Pictures Networks India says, "The brief was to come up with something that delivers a big message through the entire IPL tournament. It is an iconic brand and a most revered and sought after event in this country, and hence, a good channel through which to deliver a message of happiness across the nation."

The campaigns will run across the Sony Network channels. They will also run on regional channels, kids' channels and music channels. The print, outdoor and digital marketing will be done closer to the event.

Neeraj Vyas

Rohit Gupta

N P Singh

"We have to be very smart and sensitive about mapping India's progress in World Cup T20, and then accordingly, plan its marketing. If India wins the League matches and enters the semi-finals, the mood of the nation also changes accordingly. So, you have to be relevant at the right time," says Vyas.

The inventory is completely sold out two months before the IPL season starts. "We are charging between 5.5 to 5.75 lakh per 10 second this year on standard definition (SD) channels, and 1.5 to 1.75 lakh on high definition channels (HD)," says Rohit Gupta, president, network sales, Sony Pictures Networks India.

Interestingly, the new The Kapil Sharma Show (TKSS) will go on air from April 23, at 9 pm, on Saturdays and Sundays. This may result in a clash between the IPL tournament and the show as matches are usually played at 4 pm and 8 pm during weekends.

When asked about the possible timing clash between TKSS and the IPL, N P Singh, CEO, Sony Pictures Networks India, says, "We have a fairly large universe of viewership in India and it is diverse. There is a loyal viewership of the IPL no doubt and it continues to grow each year, but we have seen other genres doing well for their share of entertainment on different properties and different shows. With TKSS, we will be able to get a very strong GEC viewership as well, even when the IPL is on, and the good part is both of them are on our network."

Sony Max will continue to air the IPL matches with Hindi commentary, while Sony ESPN, formerly Sony KIX, will have English commentary. Sony SIX will have commentary in English, Bengali, Telugu and Tamil.

First Published : March 10, 2016
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