The great IPL sellout

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Imagine Richie Benaud as one of the commentators on the cricket telecast of IPL 2009. And imagine him going, ‘that’s a DLF Maximum!’ every time the batsman hits a six or saying ‘that’s a Citi moment of success’. Cringe. Groan. I think he would give up his profession rather than be subjected to such torture.

Agreed that Max New York Life zyaada ka iraada is part of life and everyone seeks to American Express Do More, but this is a total Amul Utterly Butterly sell out. What next? Will a single be renamed Nano? And will we see a Levis Slim Fit deep fine leg? Or a Reynolds Fine Tip silly point? Maybe a Bajaj Allianz Extra Cover? I am surprised they have left out ‘He has Vodafone made the most of now’ as one option. The possibilities are endless. Why not convert the entire match into a 2-hour TV commercial and end with the winning team singing the Visa jingle? Or get a player who scores a DLF Maximum to endorse some glucose powder brand after a six, as in the TV commercials?

Do these gimmicks really improve brand recall or brand associations? Or are they detrimental to them? I am sure many brands would like to jump on to this bandwagon and officials would only be too happy to accommodate them, but will soon be counterproductive. Time for a Nescafe strategy time out.

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  1. Wow! Awesome post!!!!! Extremely well written! Love the cricket coinages!

    But I guess we would have been naive not to expect the IPL to be exactly this! It was a circus and will continue to be so until the public have just about had enough of it. The strategic time out sucks but I guess the viewers/spectators and players will have to live with it and learn to use it as part of their game plan.

    Congrats again on a fabulous post!!!

    P.S.: How about Bharat Matrimony Catch of the Match. Or H.P Lubricant 4 stroke! Or Imodium No Run ball!

    • Or when a bowler appeals and if the umpire turns it down, he can be mandated to say: ‘Dobara mat poochna!’

  2. Hahahahaha!! Its an endless field of possibilities. “Dobara mat poochna” is an awesome one! How bout a fielder running to stop a boundary as “Run Maadi Run” moments??

  3. If I am not mistaken such strong integration has been done on Radio by a couple of brands – the latest I can think of is the Cornetto (ho jaane do).

  4. BSNL has been doing the same thing on AIRs coverage of all cricket matches over the years. The major difference being, the commentators aren’t the ones rewriting the cricket dictionary. They continued their job as usual “… ball seema rekha par, char run!” which then went into a pre-recorded “Yeh BSNL chauka, Connecting India!”

  5. This is one of the best posts in this blog, I must admit. Really hilarious. And that too for a person like me who is not into cricket so much and it is just that there is nothing better to watch on the idiot box, the pain just deepens… As you said, sometimes you feel ashamed of the profession you are in because of such misfits and mishaps if I can say…
    Basically the Citibank brand manager would have said – “I can’t lose out on being present during the biggest event of the year. I have to be there; just make sure about that”. And the media agency – “There is a media innovation here. The idea goes like this………..”

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