Star India: Inculcating Sporting culture

How many of us remember any of the previous Kabaddi World cups ? I guess the people aware of such happening would be those who keep a close eye on world happenings. But last year, every random Indian knew about kabaddi World Cup (At least of its occurrence).  So what was the difference between the previous held WCs. The difference was quite evident. STAR INDIA. Indeed STAR INDIA has taken a giant leap towards commercialising and unifying sports in India.

Let’s dive into little fact knowing about Star. New STAR Sports brand has taken sports fans by storm. While STAR has for some time been India’s entertainment leader, it moved aggressively into the sports market following 21CF’s full acquisition of its pan-Asian sports joint venture, ESPN STAR Sports (ESS), in 2012.

In launching STAR Sports a few years ago, the company set out to remake the televised sports landscape in India. One challenge to this lofty ambition was the inherent programming limitations of India’s nearly singular focus on cricket.  So in addition to winning broadcast rights for cricket (breaking the nation’s all-time viewership record with last year’s world Cup), STAR set out to transform India into a multi-sport market by investing in  hockey, badminton, soccer and kabaddi. Star Sports encourages India to “Imagine a world where sports come first”. As the leading sports channel in India, Star absorbed six different sports properties under one brand: Star Sports, and with one purpose: – Believe.

“Jeeta Dil India ka, Abb Jeetini hai duniya” (Won Indian hearts, now have to win the world), the tagline of the Indian Kabaddi Team’s campaign in the World Cups became the buzz word during the event. It is indeed a commendable effort on the part of STAR INDIA to undertake such marketing and branding efforts of non-cricket activities. Whether it is Rio Olympics or various badminton tournaments etc., Star Sports made sure that every Indian sporting fan is attached to their sporting fraternity. For this various online (hotstar, facebook page, twitter handle etc.) and offline (Newspaper, hoardings etc) mediums were undertaken to increase the penetration of all kinds of sports and games.

Star made sure that in the light of increasing the traction towards other sports, cricket is not eclipsed. In-fact,Star used the cricket to maximum to continue its sustenance in the Indian Sporting context. How can anyone forget Dharamshala ODI against New Zealand where Star’s ‘NAYI SOCH’ campaign impressed everyone and had an attention of international Media. By giving players(Indian Players) tees with their mother name written on the back, STAR INDIA once again proved its mettle in unifying sports and that too in a perfect way: by striking the emotional aspect of the country.

There is no countering the statement that STAR INDIA has started a credible initiative to advertise each and every sport. A part of recent successes of various leagues in India can be attributed to various marketing activities undertaken by Star. ‘Mauka Compaign’, ‘Chasing Gold’, ‘Ready to Raid’ etc. are some of the tagline that were buzz line throughout the year and it goes without saying that if other sports have to developed in the country, various other sporting channels should take up the charge and use their position to inculcate and improve the sporting culture in the country.

Pic courtesy: Star India

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