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Mastercard’s approach this year will be to associate with ‘Priceless moments’ during the tournament
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IPL 2020: Mastercard will go beyond TV, Digital and use podcasts, bloggers, interesting partnerships to amplify its messaging

Mastercard’s approach this year will be to associate with ‘Priceless moments’ during the tournament
  • Mastercard’s primary objective this year would be to focus on contactless and online shopping.
  • The brand wants to build confidence amongst its consumers to use contactless cards and will educate consumers about the benefits, Manasi Narasimhan, VP, Marketing & Communications, South Asia, Mastercard tells us.
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The Indian Premier League (IPL) season is slowly getting heated up and seems like all the predictions around this edition witnessing the highest viewership could be true. The league was kickstarted on September 19 with a face-off between Mumbai Indians and Chennai Super Kings after which Jay Shah, Secretary of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) took to Twitter to say that the opening match saw a record 20 crore viewers tuning in on Star Sports and Disney+ Hotstar.

It therefore doesn’t come as a surprise that brands that had to keep most of their marketing activities on hold for almost half of the year are excited. Despite a different format this year, brands are geared up to put their thinking caps on and come up with novel ways of building a connect with their target audiences.

Mastercard has been talking about the importance of contactless for a while now. The lockdown led to a spike in people adopting digital payments and contactless has also become important in today’s context. Therefore, IPL becomes the perfect platform for the brand to reach out to an engaged set of audience and further propogate their message.

We recently caught up with Manasi Narasimhan, VP, Marketing & Communications, South Asia, Mastercard to understand how the brand plans to market itself and talk to its consumers during the league.

Excerpts:

Q) While you have associated with IPL in the past, this year will be different, in terms of the format and experience. What do your marketing plans look like?

Mastercard’s approach this year will be to associate with ‘Priceless moments’ during the tournament. IPL is an exciting format and it delivers edge of the seat entertainment almost through the match. Leveraging on these moments which resonates with our brand proposition of ‘Kyoon Ki KuchKushiyanhaiPriceless’ will be the main stay of the campaign.

Q) Owing to this new format, how do you think things will be different for you as a sponsor?

We are estimating record numbers in terms of viewership this year since people are at home. Also, this is something which audiences have been waiting for since March this year. While the energy of spectators and fans during the event will be missed, we are expecting more stickiness to the messaging due to lack of external surround which typically is the highlight of the event.

Q) What are your expectations from IPL 2020? What do you aim to achieve through your association with IPL? What does IPL give to you as a platform?

Mastercard’s primary objective this year would be to focus on contactless and online shopping. We want to ensure we build confidence amongst our consumers to use contactless cards. Although we have witnessed significant traction on contactless transactions, there is immense potential for a whole set of audiences who have a contactless card and don’t use it. Similarly, for online shopping,IPL will be immediately followed by Diwali and this year we will see significant increase in gifting due to the ongoing pandemic. Online shopping will be a good tool for consumers to be safe and at the same celebrate the festivities.

Q)How do you plan to engage more closely with consumers, considering activations won’t be allowed this year and there won't be a live audience? Will Digital and TV be your biggest bets this year?

TV and digital has been the main stay of our campaign. However, we are exploring other formats like podcast, bloggers, partnership with issuers and merchants to further amplify our messaging and offering during IPL.