The IPL and Social Media Marketing

At the time of writing this article, the IPL or Indian Premier League is past the halfway stage in Season 5 and is all set to get into what would certainly be thrilling matches in the Playoffs.

Currently, it is quite clear that the Delhi Daredevils and IPL all teams Owners names the Kolkata Knight Riders should get into the Playoff stage without any struggle. It is the other two teams which remain a bit of an enigma at this moment, with strong contenders being the Mumbai Indians, the Chennai Super Kings and the Royal Challengers Bangalore. It is only the Deccan Chargers and the Pune Warriors who are pretty much out of contention as far as the contest this year is concerned. At the same time, it also seems a rather tough ask for the Rajasthan Royals and the Kings XI Punjab teams to be able to make it to the playoffs but that does not seem outright impossible just yet.

Overall, this season has seen some really thrilling matches, especially last over finishes, which we did not get to see in any other seasons and that is precisely the reason for which audience interest, both on television and the Internet, as well as inside stadiums has been simply skyrocketing. When the IPL first started this season, there was intense speculation that audience interest was dwindling with way too much cricket taking place, but with matches getting more and more exciting with each passing day, audience interest and participation too simply skyrocketed.

Against this backdrop, it is quintessential that businesses make the most of all the marketing opportunities that the IPL has to offer. In particular, they should look to derive maximum mileage out of social media marketing platforms, given the enormous uptake of these vehicles for IPL related communication and interaction.

As an instance, it is very well known that each of the teams in the IPL has some really serious fan following, especially in their respective home bases, such as Chennai for the Chennai Super Kings. In such a scenario, it is imperative that businesses design their marketing strategy in such a way that it is fully in line with the loyalty that fans have for their teams.

An excellent example would be that of Kolkata Knight Riders, where Nokia has gone on to associate with the team and be a part of the entire spirit of “Korbo, Lodbo, Jeetbo Re“, the credo of the team in Bengali (which translates to “Will Do, Will Fight, Will Win” in English), in a distinctly brilliant fashion.

Such instances can also be seen at a pan-India level, like in the case of DLF, which happens to be the title sponsor of the tournament and is also the brand associated with 6s which are hit in every match, which are referred to as “DLF Maximums”.

It is against such a backdrop that the merit of IPL based marketing and promotions, especially on social media platforms, comes to the fore in a big way.

In this context, it is really very important to remember that brands and companies need not have anything even remotely to do with cricket or cricketing gear or even sport for that matter, to tie their promotional activities with the IPL. They can very well be a part of virtually any business or industry and yet have their social media messages tied to the prestigious tournament.

Another point which comes to mind is that of American and other foreign companies, especially from non-cricket playing nations. It is pivotal that they at least try and comprehend the game, which will in turn allow them to appreciate the passion with which Indians follow cricket and all its nuances. A brilliant example would be that of German automobile giant Volkswagen, which is one of the associate sponsors of the tournament and also offers special IPL edition Vento vehicles.

In the course of their promotional activities, many such companies, especially the ones which are newly entering the huge Indian market, can use the IPL as a brilliant platform to build their brand value in the country. Brand recall would be high and customer interaction and participation in the case of all their social media messages would be truly prolific.