Community building and user centricity – the two main pillars of marketing a fantasy gaming platform, which is supported by various verticals. Saroj Panigrahi, My11Circle, gives a glimpse into the backend of its IPL strategy and explains how the brand keeps the users engaged throughout the season.
The e-commerce gaming category has been one of the biggest spenders on the Indian Premier League in 2023, reveals a recent report by TAM Sports. It further says that gaming had a 15% share in TV in 54 matches of IPL 16.
Online fantasy gaming platform My11Circle spends a lion’s share of its marketing budget on IPL. After seeing a 30% growth in the previous season, the brand is boosting its promotional activities this year. Their extensive IPL campaign supported by various content properties has attempted to keep users engaged throughout the season.
They are also the title sponsor of the IPL franchise Lucknow Super Giants (LSG), which is a fairly new franchise. The brand collaborated with The Script Room, their creative partners, and the director, Vasan Bala for the creative output of this year.
With 10+ million downloads on Play Store and an average of 4.2 ratings garnered from over 239K reviews, My11Circle is No. 2 in the Sports category of App Store with an average rating of 4.5, and 24K reviews (to date). IPL marks an important period for the brand to maintain or grow its standing in the Sports category.
The Giants' Mystery
Rewards are the foremost reason and the highly promotable aspect for a fantasy gaming platform, and it is the principal element of this campaign too, but with a distinctive turn. Drawing on the concept of 'Bade Se Bada', the campaign throws the spotlight on the second prize to create mystery and intrigue for the first prize.
The app recorded over 45 million visits in April, a 580% spike from previous months, according to reports. The seasonal spike is also aligned with the initiation of the IPL season, making it a crucial period of the year, required to be supported by substantial user engagement.
The creative campaign is focused on garnering excitement amongst cricket enthusiasts about what the first prize would be this year. "We're going no holds barred in promoting the second prize, leaving fans guessing what the first prize would be", says Panigrahi.
This concept is also visible in the visual treatment, as it draws parallels between the concept and brand endorsers. The curiosity about the first prize builds on the previous 'The Giants' campaign with 'Bade Se Bada'.
Bade Se Bada
"We have adopted a more user-centric approach, with the aim of developing something that resonates with our audience during the IPL season. Our partnership with the Lucknow Super Giants and our brand ambassadors, including Sourav Ganguly, Shubhman Gill, Arshdeep Singh, Mohammed Siraj, and Ruturaj Gaikwad, played a crucial role in bringing this campaign to life. Their larger-than-life avatars in the campaign symbolize My11Circle's maximized experience for players and promise a visual treat".
The media plan is implemented with a comprehensive 360-degree marketing strategy. This included leveraging ATL, BTL, Digital, and social media platforms to broaden the reach and engage a wider audience base, employing last-mile ads to target the audience more effectively. Additionally, the brand has partnered with a range of influencers for performance campaigns.
The Momentum Strategem
IPL is one of the most densely populated seasons in terms of app visits and the most significant advertising platform, it naturally becomes an important strategy to hold the momentum and keep the users engaged throughout the season.
"Our focus is to capitalize on social media in a way to engage with our customers and our approach is to curate authentic and personalized content experiences for our audience. In today's digital era, content that is genuine and customized has a higher chance of captivating", states Panigrahi.
Out Of The Park Ft. Arshdeep Singh
'Locker Room Stories' and 'Out of the Park' are the two content series devised to provide a glimpse into previously unknown stories, and give an opportunity for fans to connect with their favorite sports personalities, by listening to their personal anecdotes, superstitions, role models and much more.
Locker Room Stories Ft. Shubhman Gill
These properties would further be supported with multiple content activities such as games and quizzes on social media channels. Panigrahi further explains, "Our marketing campaigns are designed with the goal of providing our players with an exciting and rewarding experience. With these engagement campaigns, My11Circle aims to reinforce its commitment to rewarding the passion, skill, and knowledge of Indian cricket enthusiasts and players".
Out Of The Park Ft. Sourav Ganguly
The Science Of User-Centricity
Panigrahi states that user-centricity is at the core of how the brand operates. Gathering user insights and feedback, striving to improve the platform and offerings based on this information, remains a priority to maintain the user-centric approach.
He further explains the 'Science of Gaming' as the operating ethos. "Our AI and data science team delves into the terabytes of data generated by our players, analyzing their behavior to gain valuable insights into their inclinations and preferences. This enables us to create enhanced gaming experiences that cater to the specific needs and requirements of our players".
The scientific approach towards hyper-personalization also accounts for a big differentiator. "While hyper-personalization exists as a concept, however, what differentiates us is the industry-defining methodologies and resources that we have put behind our functions to improve gameplay experiences".