Biscuits major Parle Products has jumped on board as the 11th associate sponsor for IPL 6.
Last season, the company had only bought few ad spots for its cookie brand Happy Happy, but decided to stay away from the tournament given the prohibitive ad rates.
“Things are different this year. We are not just buying spots. We have spent three times more than last year, as we have two new launches and three campaigns this season,” said Praveen Kulkarni, Marketing Manager, Parle Products.
Campaigns for new brands, such as Gold Star and Hide & Seek along with its flagship glucose brand Parle G, will be splashed during the tournament.
“Being associate sponsors will have benefits such as different promotions during the 76 matches along with a huge presence on air as well. These rates are different from the expensive spot buy rates of last year,” added Kulkarni.
The biscuit major recently roped in Amitabh Bachchan as the brand ambassador for its new brand of Gold Star cookies.
With ad rates quoting at Rs 5 lakh for 10-second spots at the last IPL, Parle decided to only enter midway through the series, with its mass cookie brand Happy Happy, the company’s only launch last year. As Kulkarni says, “IPL as a property works when there are new brand campaigns.”
Last year, other FMCG companies such as Godrej Consumer Products also stayed away from the tournament. Now, with a new brand endorser (Aamir Khan) for the group, Godrej is unleashing nine commercials featuring the actor just before IPL starts.
Shireesh Joshi, Head Strategic Marketing, Godrej Group, said, “We did not invest in IPL, as there was no new campaign last year.”
Others such as Rasna are adopting a wait-and-watch approach.
“IPL ratings are never high during the initial matches. We are still waiting for rates to go down before investing in the property,” said Piruz Khambatta, CMD, Rasna.
Meanwhile, SET Max, the official broadcaster for IPL, has already increased its ad spot rates from Rs 4.5 lakh to Rs 5.5 lakh for its balance inventory. It expects rates to soar during the finals and semi-finals. As Rohit Gupta, President, MSM (the owner of Set Max), said, “We expect ad spot rates to increase by 15-20 per cent this season and reach between Rs 16 lakh and Rs 18 lakh per 10 seconds during the finals and semi-finals.”