Home > Cricket News, icl info > Indian Cricket League-BCCI rivalry bodes well for advertisers

Indian Cricket League-BCCI rivalry bodes well for advertisers

It seems to be premature to ponder on whether ICL is an opportunity for advertisers. After all, ICL is still an unknown entity. The question whether ICL is an opportunity depends purely on whether the Indian viewer will decide to watch the event or not. Basically, no viewers and no fans equals no interest from advertisers!

A more immediate question for ICL is: what is the product and why will it be viewed? As of now, the ICL product is ill-defined and seems to be a haphazard cricket league featuring a rag-tag group of unknown domestic cricketers and semi-retired international cricketers. This motley crew will play for as-yet unknown teams at as-yet unknown venues. Perhaps more hype than substance?

For all the discussion on how ICL will ‘develop’ the game, let’s make no mistake, this is a commercial venture. The promoters are trying to develop a commercial property which challenges the writ of BCCI. What seems to have drawn public and media interest is the ‘soap opera’ between ICL and everyone’s favourite whipping boy, BCCI. Unfortunately, this may be all the current brouhaha currently is — a soap opera that will have no final bearing on the success or failure of ICL.

There is a fundamental flaw with the ICL concept. Cricket is a sport with dominant affiliations for national teams, not club teams. The key driver of cricket’s popularity is international tournaments that are the jewels in the crown of the annual cricketing calendar, essentially ensuring the best cricketers in the world spend most of the year playing cricket for their countries.

This is even more the case in India. Most cricketing fans and viewers in India watch cricket because of the passion that the entire nation feels when India competes in international events. The viewer wants to see India play. This is the critical affiliation factor defining the popularity of Indian cricket.

The city teams that ICL will create go against this fundamental premise and this could be the defining reason on why ICL may not be successful.

Every advertiser will look at the ICL offering on television and first ask the question: will my existing/potential consumers watch this, and will they feel a ‘part of it’? Thus, the question of whether ICL is an opportunity for advertisers is three years too premature. Will ICL be around till then to find out?

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Categories: Cricket News, icl info
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