In conversation with Social Samosa, Fever FM’s Harshad Jain charts out the plans to leverage the IPL fever to drive listenership by on-air campaigns and regain the lost momentum as the industry inches towards normalcy.
As the official radio partner of Mumbai Indians, Delhi Capitals, Kolkata Knight Riders, Royal Challengers Bangalore, and Chennai Super Kings this cricket season, Fever FM is churning out varied content formats to keep the audiences-at-home engaged. Harshad Jain, CEO – Radio and Entertainment, HT Media Ltd, and Next Mediaworks Ltd. puts the spotlight on the radio player’s IPL marketing strategy and objectives at length.
What was the insight behind your association with 5 IPL teams?
Fever has been powering the sports revolution in the country with tie-ups and partnerships with multiple teams and franchisees across various sports genres. We’ve been associated with Mumbai Indians since 2008. This year again, we’re proud to be the official radio partners of the team, taking forward our long-standing association.
What does the overall marketing plan for the season look like? What kind of a role will social media play?
Our marketing campaign – ‘Desert Storm’ aims to ensure that the cricket fever touches a new high with multiple innovations across various platforms.
Digital and social media, in particular, will of course play a huge role in amplifying the on-air campaign. All our activities on the radio have a digital leg to them to drive higher consumer engagement and reach. A lot of cricket related contests like fanthem, quizzes, player trivia, etc. are also planned to increase engagement on the pages, with team merchandise, virtual meet & greets up for grabs.
Take us through your marketing strategy. Any campaigns or activities lined up to support your partnership?
From conducting watch parties with the fans and RJs, Instagram live sessions with RJs for the pre-match excitement and multiple contests to give the fans money can’t buy experience, we have a content line-up which is live. All the activities are designed to amplify our partnership, giving interesting gratification opportunities to our listeners!
Please elaborate on your media mix. How much percent of it is reserved for digital?
The campaign, Desert Storm, integrates our Radio, Digital, and Print platforms, offering multiple partnership avenues to enable brands and businesses to drive the highest impact and engagement. A large chunk of this will be driven digitally.
Being a radio station, while our primary mode of driving listenership would be through the ‘on-air’ campaigns, each activity will be supported with a robust digital plan.
Also Read: #SSIPLWatch 90% of marketing budget goes to digital followed by print & offline: Aman Gupta, boAt Lifestyle
How will you be leveraging IPL to bounce back from the pandemic induced business lull & changing consumer habits created by the lockdown?
With the cricketing season commencing and the festive season fast approaching, the entire nation seems to have found a reason to be happy amidst the COVID-induced anxiety. This is a great opportunity for us to reach out to brands and clients and revive the business lost during the past few months.
The beginning of IPL helps to build a narrative around customer sentiments, focusing on bringing positivity and optimism in listeners’ lives. While on one hand, our campaign will enthuse excitement amongst the listeners, it also offers great opportunities for clients to leverage the potential of radio as a channel to maximize their audience reach and boost revenues.
Pre corona v/s post corona: has IPL marketing or sports marketing in general changed dramatically?
One key thing that has changed this IPL season is the lack of on-ground engagement activities. While till last season, we were heavy on on-ground activities and gratifications including match tickets and player meet and greet; this year the trend would be focussed entirely on digital.