MUMBAI: Advertisers regard the Indian Premier League as a prime vehicle for attaining reach and visibility across the country but with 69 brands hitching their star to the tournament the battle for brand visibility is intense and has been "won" this year by Amul, Amazon and Coca-Cola.

Hansa Research, part of the RK Swamy/BBDO Group, devised a brand recall ranking, based on a survey of 11,550 males aged 12 to 60 across eleven cities in socio-economic classes A, B and C, asking them a day after matches about which brands stayed in their minds.

The study showed that while the three biggest spenders were Amazon, Oppo and Vodafone, only Amazon had featured in the three most-recalled brands, alongside Amul and Coca-Cola.

But when Hansa put the two metrics together to measure return on investment in terms of brand recall (rROI) – effectively the ratio of the number of advertising seconds to the brand recall for each advertiser – Amazon dropped out of the top three to be replaced by Blue Star.

"Our observation is that those who top the rROI list are not necessarily very huge spenders on IPL," V Sudarshan, vice president, Hansa Research, told the Business Standard.

"What they have done is leveraged the property cleverly to stay ahead of the curve," he explained. "So, for instance, a brand with high rROI could be advertising at strategic time-outs on TV or are strategically visible on the ground or on the jersey of a player."

That there was no one route to achieving effective rROI was reflected in the different approaches taken by two of the top three. Coca-Cola combined TV sponsorship with a role as the beverage partner of the Kings XI Punjab team, for example, while Amul preferred spot buys to promote a new range of drinks.

Separately, Star India reported that its Hotstar mobile streaming app had more than doubled its viewership to 100m during the current IPL season.

"We believe we have made a huge contribution to the IPL by bringing in a new audience base to the tournament," Ajit Mohan, EVP and Head/Digital, Star India, told Mint.

Data sourced from Business Standard; additional content by Warc staff