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Indian Premier League: A Case Study on its Evolution in the Digital Age

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Summer in India means enjoying juicy mangoes and cheering for the Indian Premier League (IPL), a favorite nationwide. Ever wondered how the IPL started and what role social media and technology played? Find out in this easy-to-read piece!

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The IPL, or Indian Premier League, is a fancy cricket league in India that started in 2007. It’s super popular with fans all over the country and has become a big deal in Indian cricket. Ten teams from different cities compete in the league, and the matches happen during the summer, from March to May.

The Indian Premier League (IPL) has come a long way since its inception in 2007. It has become a cultural phenomenon in India, and the internet has played a significant role in its growth. With the rise of online streaming platforms, many started viewing the IPL online, and the viewership skyrocketed. Brands have also leveraged social media to create a buzz with pre-tournament content, conduct real-time engagement during matches, and use augmented reality to keep fans engaged. Digital marketing strategies have also aligned with the IPL season, making brands like Cred and Dream 11 instant hits.

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The IPL has changed a lot over the years, and the internet has been a big part of that change. Thanks to online streaming, more people started watching the IPL online, and lots of folks got really into it. Brands also used social media to get people excited before the matches, chat with fans during the games, and even use cool technology to keep everyone interested. This digital marketing stuff has made brands like Cred and Dream 11 super popular during the IPL season.

IPL and Digital Marketing 

BCCI announces CRED as official partner of Dream11 Indian Premier league | KreedOn
Image Source: cricket.seelatest.com

During the IPL season, smart digital marketing strategies make brands like Cred and Dream 11 big hits. The IPL’s popularity is boosted by trends such as widespread internet use, more time spent on screens, and exciting chances to connect with a diverse audience.

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Internet Penetration 

JioCinema - Indian Premier League | KreedOn
Image Source: afaqs.com

Due to the pandemic, there’s been a 20% boost in digital spending during the IPL, with at least 200 million people going online and using OTT platforms. As a major chunk of viewership shifts online, there’s a noticeable rise in internet usage. Breaking previous records, the digital streaming of Indian Premier League (IPL) matches has garnered unprecedented attention from both advertisers and viewers. JioCinema, the official streaming partner for IPL matches, has secured 26 major sponsors for the tournament, marking the highest sponsorship count ever for a digitally streamed sporting event.

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Surge in Screen Time

Screen Time | KreedOn
Image Source: omnisperience.com

With the growing preference for online content, the average screen time for both adults and youth has gone up. Brands leverage this by crafting campaigns during the Indian Premier League (IPL), generating excitement not just for themselves but also for the cricket tournament.

Outreach Opportunities 

JioCinema's penetration surges - Indian Premier League | KreedOn
Image Source: medianews4u.com

Digital and personalized ads showcased during online streaming, notably by Cred, have proven effective for the IPL. These ads establish a strong connection between brands and cricket, captivating the fans’ attention. JioCinema has set new records in both viewership and app downloads. Concurrent viewership has reached a peak of 2.4 crore, and JioCinema maintains its status as one of the most globally downloaded apps.

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Augmented Reality

Star Sports & Quidich Innovation Labs wow audience with an AR | KreedOn
Image Source: bestmediainfo.com

Creating AR filters of various IPL teams or features like the orange cap is entertaining. It also keeps the fans engaged, guessing who might win it this season!

Real-time engagement

Real-time engagement during matches

Ask Star questions in IPL | KreedOn
Image Source: facebook.com

Brands can conduct a poll, quiz, and pose ‘what do you think’- questions to the fans on social media. Brands ask their followers to create memes and host giveaways for the entire IPL season. Using user-generated content, like sharing pictures and videos from the stadium while the match is still on, can keep fans glued to the brands on social media and IPL.

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Role of social media in IPL

Creating a buzz with pre-tournament content

Social Media Buzz of Indian Premier league | KreedOn
Image Source: socialsamosa.com

Even if brands can’t afford to show the actual content regarding the IPL, the least they do is create quizzes about famous players and cricket. Certain brands will post behind-the-stage videos, offbeat interviews with coaches and players, brand collaboration news, practice clips, and many more on Instagram, Facebook, YouTube and Twitter.

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Role of Technology in Indian Premier League

Indian Premier League - Technology | KreedOn
Image Source: league11.in

Technological advancements have played a significant role in the evolution of the Indian Premier League (IPL). Tools that evaluate a team’s strengths and weaknesses based on their fielding standards and players have helped teams make informed decisions about tactics and strategies. Another technological advancement that has been used in the IPL is Piero technology. This technology allows expert teams to stitch the shots taken by various cameras like drones, buggy, slow-motion, and ultra-motion cameras.

Breaking streaming records both in India and worldwide, the Indian Premier League (IPL) final, featuring Chennai Super Kings (CSK) and Gujarat Titans (GT), achieved a milestone with 32 million peak concurrent users on Viacom18’s JioCinema app. This marks the first instance in the country where a cricket match has surpassed the 30 million peak concurrency mark.

The integration of technology has not just elevated fans’ viewing enjoyment but has also elevated the overall standard of the game. A major technological stride in the IPL has been the adoption of cutting-edge broadcasting technology. Collaborating with leading global broadcasters, the league ensures a premium viewing experience for fans. Incorporating high-definition cameras, 4K technology, and slow-motion replays has introduced a fresh perspective to the game. The viewers can now see the game from different angles and get a better understanding of the on-field action. The use of graphics and virtual reality has also made the broadcast more engaging and interactive.

Impact of Virtual Assistants

On-the-go interactions, ticket booking, and access to match schedules have been significantly enhanced through the adoption of virtual assistants in IPL. This transformation has notably reduced the reliance on manual ticket sales, providing convenience for both fans and the IPL administration.

Advanced Data Analytics and Innovative Tools

Indian Premier league - Data Analysis | KreedOn
Image Source: blog.consoleflare.com

IPL teams now have access to detailed insights, including a player’s swing speed, bat angle, and ball impact, through advanced data analytics tools. The league also incorporates cutting-edge technologies like Hawk-Eye, BuggyQam, LED stumps and bails, and spider cam. Many of these technological innovations are developed by Indian startups, showcasing a commitment to leveraging homegrown expertise in the IPL.

In conclusion, the evolution of the Indian Premier League (IPL) in tandem with the internet has undeniably transformed the landscape of cricket entertainment. The marriage of IPL and internet technology has not only broadened the global reach of the league but has also profoundly enhanced the fan experience. From real-time updates and interactive platforms to high-definition streaming and social media engagement, the internet has become an integral part of the IPL’s journey. As the league continues to leverage technological advancements, the symbiotic relationship between IPL and the internet will likely chart new territories, ensuring a dynamic and immersive cricketing experience for fans worldwide.

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