Nitin Jain and Rema Harish-owned communications consultancy Domor, in partnership with TNS, has kicked off a marketing effectiveness study termed as 'Consumer Response to Investment in Cricket' (CRIC) with the Indian Premier League (IPL) Season 3.
CRIC has been designed with the primary aim of measuring the effectiveness of cricketing events – largely for the sponsors/advertisers who use these events as a marketing platform.
CRIC is a large scale consumer research led approach which will be used on all tent-pole cricketing events here on, to measure the impact of these events on brand metrics including awareness, disposition and imagery. CRIC will use pre and post measurement to isolate the effect of existing brand equity for each event and use comparable markets, audiences and measurements across events to benchmark one versus the other.
Nitin Jain, founder-director, Domor Communication Consulting says, "When we started Domor, our intent was to 'Do More' for the marketer in the area of improving effectiveness of their investment and this is our first big step in that direction. Investments on cricket are already huge and only getting bigger - so this is a logical place to start. Further our experience in planning and buying on sporting properties gives us the added understanding and learning critical to embark on a project like this."
"We believe that exposure is an incomplete metric – it treats these events as mere media properties. In reality, most of these events are marketing platforms, and marketers plan comprehensive activities, launches and communication around them. The true measure of what is working is what it does to the brand – awareness, preference, image and ultimately purchase or use," says Rema Harish, founder-director, Domor Communication Consulting.
Pooja Passi, associate vice president, TNS adds, "The IPL research done by Domor and TNS is one of its kind both in terms of depth and width. The study pans across 12 states with representation from Metros and Tier 1 towns and covers a total 10,000 respondents. And this makes it the largest IPL research done by any agency."
Jain and Harish state that CRIC is not a pure research product. "It builds on an in-depth understanding of the way cricket is used by marketers and consumed by audiences. Domor plans to integrate viewership data from TAM and sponsorship evaluation data from Repucom to make a meaningful interpretation of the field results. The study captures team popularity and loyalty too, providing valuable inputs for the franchise owners."
Earlier efforts in this area have come either from media agencies or research agencies. "In our opinion," Jain says, "Most lacked scale and consistency and have suffered from not having the synergistic expertise required for such an effort. CRIC combines the research expertise of TNS, the world’s largest custom research agency and the media expertise of Domor partners to deliver a product of significant scale across all tentpole cricketing events."
Harish adds, "The IPL is the most complex event to measure since there are many more opportunities for marketers to associate with the IPL as compared to other event/s – on-air, on-ground, with-teams. So, IPL 3 will be our acid test."
The IPL-3 CRIC Omnibus which was kicked off in February 2010 has been subscribed to by some key sponsors of the event – Tata Teleservices, Hyundai Motors, Hero Honda, PepsiCo, Aircel, ITC and Nokia.
Jain adds, "We have a cross section of large and medium players - on-ground sponsors, on-air sponsors and team sponsors. We are grateful to these marketers for their faith reposed in us and we are confident that we will be able to unravel some of the mysteries surrounding cricket sponsorships and provide directions for better associations on forthcoming events."
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