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Rediff.com  » Business » Advertisers hit a ton with Sachin's swansong match

Advertisers hit a ton with Sachin's swansong match

November 14, 2013 10:36 IST

Advertisers hit a ton with Sachin's swansong match

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BS Reporters in Mumbai

As Sachin Tendulkar gets ready to bid adieu to active cricket, Mumbai’s cityscape has been decorated with farewell messages to the batting maestro in various forms, shapes and sizes.

From hoardings to banners, the city is splattered with ‘goodbye Sachin’ messages.

It is not only the big guns who are doing their bit to bid farewell to the country’s favourite batsman.

Localities in Mumbai are seen hanging banners and posters saluting the legend.

The buzz around the Little Master’s last match started immediately after he announced his retirement.

Brands that have been associated with the cricket legend have found ways to pay tribute to him through special campaigns and events.

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Image: People walk past a sand sculpture of cricketer Sachin Tendulkar created by Indian sand artist Sudarshan Patnaik on a beach in Puri.
Photographs: Reuters

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Advertisers hit a ton with Sachin's swansong match

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While sporting goods and apparel brand Adidas will be launching the campaign SRT Forever to commemorate Sachin’s innings in cricket, Aviva Life Insurance will be concluding its ongoing marketing campaign ‘What’s your big plan’ after Tendulkar’s retirement.

Aviva had rolled out this campaign in August this year to encourage children to dream big.

As a part of the campaign, the winners would also get a chance to play cricket with Tendulkar.

In addition to this, Aviva is also planning a few social media activities to engage people around Tendulkar's retirement, said executives at Aviva Life Insurance.

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Image: Candles spelling out a message about Indian cricketer Sachin Tendulkar are seen on a cricket pitch on the eve of Diwali in Allahabad.
Photographs: Jitendra Prakash/Reuters

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Advertisers hit a ton with Sachin's swansong match

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Other brands such as Toshiba (television) and Royal Bank of Scotland have also launched marketing campaigns to coincide with Tendulkar’s last series.

Food and beverage major Coke says it will take up advertising slots during Tendulkar’s penultimate and final test matches in a bid to push its products aggressively since viewership is expected to be high for these matches.

However, they have no Tendulkar-specific campaigns lined up for these matches, said executives at the company.

The broadcaster and title sponsor of Tendulkar’s last test series, STAR India, too, hopped on to the wagon and went all out to engage Tendulkar fans all over the globe so that they can bid farewell to their hero.

STAR India has launched a ‘Cheer for Sachin’ campaign to pay tribute to the Master Blaster and is targeting to break the world record for maximum ‘cheers’ garnered by any campaign ever.

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Image: Sachin Tendulkar (L) signs the oath book as India's Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs V Narayanasamy watches during the swearing-in ceremony at the Indian parliament in New Delhi June 4, 2012.
Photographs: Reuters

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Advertisers hit a ton with Sachin's swansong match

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The campaign invites fans to dial a number and cheer for Tendulkar (saying ‘Sachin-Sachin’) and it will run across the STAR Sports network, as well as STAR India network of channels.

There will be huge focus on the digital media as well to aggregate all fans for the campaign.

STAR India will donate its share of proceeds from the incoming call revenues to a non-governmental organisation for sports development among youngsters.

The broadcaster will use a special FanCam enabling fans to say ‘I was there’ as they enjoy the historic moment.

It is capable of generating a 360-degree extremely high-resolution photo of the stadium, making it possible for every fan present on any of the Test match days to zoom into his picture and keep this memory with him for posterity.

For STAR India, it also means big advertising revenues, since it holds the exclusive media rights to all international cricket matches played in India.

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Image: Boys from a local cricket academy wearing masks of Indian cricketer Sachin Tendulkar, celebrate his 100 international centuries in Agartala.
Photographs: Jayanta Dey/Reuters

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Advertisers hit a ton with Sachin's swansong match

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“Given the craze behind Tendulkar, it will definitely be one of the most watched events of the year if not decade and advertisers will not mind shelling out extra bucks to advertise during the match.

The 10-second slots for a test match usually go for Rs 50,000- 70,000 but in this case, the ad rates are as high as Rs 150,000-300,000 (average over five days),” said a media buyer involved with brands advertising during the match.

Other media houses also did their bit.

TV Today Group held the Salaam Sachin India Today Conclave that saw participation from Ajit Tendulkar (Sachin’s brother); Boria Majumdar, consulting editor, India Today; and cricketers Suresh Raina Javagal Srinath, Waqar Younis and Shoaib Akhtar.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India is not to be left behind.

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Image: Sachin Tendulkar speaks during a news conference to launch a travel portal in Mumbai.
Photographs: Danish Siddiqui/Reuters

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Advertisers hit a ton with Sachin's swansong match

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It has started a campaign on micro-blogging site Twitter, where fans are asked to tweet using #thankyousachin and they stand to receive a signed picture of Tendulkar if their tweet is re-tweeted by BCCI.

There are eight photographs to be collected in the campaign.

The Mumbai Cricket Association held a GoodBye Sachin gala on Monday 11 November where Tendulkar was felicitated by cricketing legends and politicians from the state.

The event took place at the MCA's Kandivali Clubhouse, which will now be called the Sachin Tendulkar Gymkhana to honour the batting legend's contribution to Indian cricket.

The security at the Wankhede Stadium has been beefed up considering the opening day of the last test match played by Tendulkar is expected see celebrities, politicians and corporate biggies in attendance.

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Image: Sachin Tendulkar (C) walks after taking oath at the Indian parliament in New Delhi June 4, 2012.
Photographs: Reuters

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The online content streaming arm of Star Sports, www.starsports.com, has launched the Sachin Memory Project dedicated to Tendulkar's career.

The portal captures Tendulkar's 24-year-long career in a special time-line created by the team at starsports.com.

This time-line includes anecdotes and achievements in his career along with videos of famous interviews and innings played by him.

Ajit Mohan, head of digital business at Star India, says: “Sachin Memory Project is a unique initiative by starsports.com to commemorate the Little Master’s retirement. Starsports.com is about talking to the most ardent fans of the game.

And we wanted to offer them content that was not only exclusive but also true to the way they consume on digital.

It’s not text or video or a linear way of consumption.

The focus is on giving the user control over his experience and letting him chart his own path of discovery.

The project is a timeline of the events across Sachin’s illustrious 24-year career.

It houses videos, photos, interviews and a lot more pieces of content that a viewer could just get lost in.”

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Image: Sachin Tendulkar bounces a ball on his bat during a practice session.
Photographs: Vivek Prakash/Reuters

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The ticket frenzy

Perhaps one of the most awaited and anticipated sporting vents in the country, Tendulkar's last match saw a frenzy for tickets like no other.

To begin with, the MCA announced that only 5,000 (from a total of 32,000-odd seats) tickets will be available on sale for fans.

The rest were to be distributed among the various clubs associated with the MCA and BCCI.

Of the 5,000 tickets available to the public, 1,500 were for the upper tier of the Sachin Tendulkar Stand.

These were sold as hospitality tickets (aimed at the fans overseas) and were given out on a first-cum-first-served basis to those who applied to the MCA.

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Image: Sachin Tendulkar gestures as he prepares to bowl.
Photographs: Vivek Prakash/Reuters

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The remaining 3,500 tickets were sold exclusively online on a portal called Kyazoonga.com.

The portal received such a heavy traffic that it crashed within hours of the opening on ticket sales.

According to sources close to the portal, the total 3,500 tickets were sold within 15 hours.

The hospitality tickets were available for Rs 1,000 while those on Kyazoonga.com were available for Rs 500, Rs 1,000 and Rs 2,500.

Given the anticipation for the match, it is obvious that some tickets found their way into the black market.

According to sources, the black market rate of hospitality tickets is anywhere between Rs 20,000 and Rs 25,000, while normal tickets are being sold between eight and 10 times the original rate.


Image: Sachin Tendulkar laughs during a practice session.
Photographs: Tim Wimborne/Reuters
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