Cricket is not just a sport; it is a religion, one that is passionately followed by over one billion fans globally. Come World Cup, a Test Series, or the T20, fans not only gather around the television but also pray, and cheer as their favorite teams play on. Emotions run high, energy unparalleled – such is the love for cricket. Preparations start days ahead of the matches. Reading and following the pre-match analysis, voicing opinions on team selections, following the rivalry between teams, supporting the team on gameday, and indulging in post-match discussions becomes a part of their daily life.
May 2019 to July 2019 was an emotional rollercoaster for cricket fans around the world as the top ten cricketing nations battled it out at the ICC Cricket World Cup (CWC) 2019. As their national teams were eliminated, fans chose from one of the remaining teams to show their support. 50% of these top ten teams were represented by South Asian nations – India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and Afghanistan.
This undying devotion towards the game is also evident from the performance metrics analyzed during the ICC CWC 2019 of publishers operating in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka. Our analysis of publishers’ performance metrics, especially the sports publishers in these regions, before and during the World Cup saw a trend that is enlightening and interesting for brands and advertisers who want to target emerging demography – the South Asian Americans. Below are a few advertising metrics from the South Asian publishers’* sports web pages concerning South Asian audience residing in the US.
- The overall Page View (PV) numbers increased by 40% throughout the duration of the tournament (May 29th, 2019** to July 14th, 2019 – 47 days) when compared to the same interval (April 12th, 2019 to May 28th, 2019 – 47 days) just before the tournament.
- Country-wise data reveals that the PVs on the country’s publishers increased by up to 70% on the day of their country’s match. Given how passionate Cricket fans are, it is no surprise that these numbers were similar for pre-match and post-match days as well.
- The increased PVs also brought an increase in CPMs for the publishers. On an average, publishers saw a 20% increase in the CPM rates and the CPMs were up to 30% higher on Country’s gamedays with a sustained spike on the days before and after the match involving their Country.
- For Indian and Pakistani publishers, the highest numbers of PVs (Double than average) and CPMs (up to 50% higher) were recorded for the India-Pakistan matchday – June 16th, 2019 – due to their long-standing rivalry.
‘True Passion Never Dies’ – this is true for all Cricketing fans, especially those of the South Asian countries, irrespective of where they reside. As long as there is a cricket match, regardless of where the match is played or the opponent teams, whether their home country is playing or not, this game is watched with the same interest and enthusiasm as the World Cup. This opens up a sea of opportunities for advertisers looking to specifically target this demographic, meaning even a bilateral series (involving any South Asian country) is bound to give higher impression numbers and improved performance (although not as high as ICC tournaments involving multiple countries) when compared to non-cricketing days. Let’s not forget that the audience on sports news websites/apps are highly targetable and engage easily.
The South Asian American community is roughly 5.4 million members strong. If you are an agency working on your client’s campaigns or a brand trying to reach this section of audiences, ICC Cricket World Cup definitely was an opportunity not to miss, but it doesn’t end there. It is better to be prepared and utilize the opportunity presented by the next cricket tournament involving any South Asian country by creating cricket and tournament focussed campaigns and calendar for your brands to infuse relevancy and improve CTRs.
Reach out to us at email@example.com if you are looking to reach the South Asian audience for your campaigns. We have highly engaging proprietary audience segments that will help you gain better reach and improve your campaign performance.
* Datawrkz clients
** pre-match day for the tournament opener between England and South Africa on 30th May