'Ek India Happywala' is IPL 2016's tagline.

It stands for a Happy and positive India - a powerful thought, indeed. Kudos to the IPL 2016 managing team and the creative heads who came up with this.

What about the marketers who will spend about ₹1200 crores over the next two months? Will they be truly happywala? Probably.

The stakes are high.

Flashback.In 2008, when the world was imploding with the US credit crisis, BCCI launched IPL (Indian Premier League) to bring club style cricket to India. It was a sell-out. For $918 million, World Sport Group bagged the IPL broadcasting rights for 10 years. A year later, the contract was passed on to Sony who shelled out $1.63 billion for the nine-year broadcasting rights.

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Sony has been tight lipped about the recovery of its investment, till date.

If one goes by the TV ad rates and the corresponding revenues, Sony does look on a solid wicket.Take a look at the 10 second ad spots.

TV Feed10 second Ad Spot (₹)

Standard Definition (SD) Channel 5.5 - 5.75 LakhHigh Definition (HD) Channel1.5 - 1.75 LakhThe pressure is now on the brands.

Interestingly, this season, the number of brands are lesser. 35 to 40 compared to 45 / 50 for last year. Well that may not be enough reason for complacency.

The brands in question will have to do more than just wait for IPL to play out.

Taking an inbound marketing perspective, we recommend that the brands ask the following questions and then act on it.

  1. How do we leverage TV spends across all the other media channels where IPL viewers thrive?
  2. Does IPL create inbound marketing potential? How does one stretch it to deliver ROI? What can the previous editions teach us?
  3. What revenue goals should we link this to? Should we follow conventional marketing metrics or aggressive ones?

There are more questions. Three is a good start, though.

If you are interested in the 2nd question, you just got lucky. Inbound Mantra is researching how the previous IPL editions played catalyst to inbound marketing.

Till that time, enjoy the Vivo IPL 6s.

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