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If cricket is our religion and cricketers demigods

30 March, 2011

... can Internet be a place for worship?

MUMBAI — It is a general expectation that habits of a culture are instantly apparent on various media outlets – emerging or established. Sizeable evidence of coverage of varied topics in print, radio and television rationalizes this supposition. The medium of Internet is not new to India; however introduction of topical content is slow to occur. The content on new media such as Internet is gradually evolving to deliver the most relevant and monetized updates to the users – the recent Cricket World Cup is a prime example of it. In a country where the sport of cricket is revered as a religion; it will be of every digital enthusiast’s keenness to know whether sport lovers frequent Internet to watch their demigods perform.

In our recent estimates from I-Cube 2009 reports, there are nearly 77 Mn Internet users in the urban cities and nearly 7 Mn users in the rural areas. Witnessing such growth in the overall Internet adoption, online publishers have come up with varied offerings on the website. Apart from publishing certain news articles and images regarding the latest matches; publishers offer live scorecards as well as commentary. Further, some of them with established lineage in television media also provide videos of interviews and highlights. With even stronger links; the ESPN-backed shows live matches on its website.

Considering that real-time and interactive content related to cricket are available; do these websites attract viewers in sizeable proportion and do these users actually spent time navigating the content provided by these websites?

Based on the real-time data collection from a large panel, enjoys the highest unique visitors among all the websites with 7.12 Mn. The ESPN-backed garners a reach of 5.76 Mn. The other websites that attract a sizeable proportion include the cwclive section of and

An average visitor spends variable time on the above properties. streams live matches on its website and also hosts a wide variety of video content related to cricket. Consequently users tend to spend more time on the website. Similar is the case with which provides a wide variety of news and live content on its website. It also streams live video which is available only to a visitor from India.

The above data represents the trends that have occurred over the month of February. There are certain days, however, that marked an increase in unique visitors and the time spent over the website. This table illustrates the details for different dates when matches were played. The most number of unique visitors that used a website for following a match was on 19th Feb, 2011 where they visited between 12p-6p. This is a predicted pattern as it was the first match of the world cup tournament and was played between India and Bangladesh. This was followed by the tied match between India and England which was played on 27th Feb, 2011. 1.23 Mn visitors followed this match on during 6p – 12p given that it was thoroughly interesting to the last minute. For the same match, received lesser unique visitors during the same time period (i.e. 1.06 Mn). Among the non-Indian matches, 1.15 Mn followed the match of Australia and New Zealand between 12p – 6p on

These numbers dwarf the reach garnered by the television medium; however, they give ample evidence that Internet as a medium is evolving to provide interactive and relevant content. As more such content follows, this virtual medium is slated to provide an abode where cricket as a religion is bound to thrive; enabling followers to witness their supernatural divine beings perform their magic.

About Web Audience Measurement (IAM)
WAM is an offering from IMRB International which provides publishers, planners and advertisers a common platform to identify trends in Internet usage in India as well as plan for better media planning. The panel based approach adopted by this system has been made possible due to a unique metering technology custom built for Indian market. The meter is capable of capturing internet usage data from multiple machines and still attribute to the same panellist. Further, the meter allows the flexibility of capturing only the panel member’s data in case the machine is used by multiple users. The meter can capture data from multiple browsers (all versions of IE, all versions of Chrome, Firefox, Yahoo! Messenger, Google Talk and MSN Messenger). The data reporting is being done through the well established Media Xpress tool customized for the Internet market. The reporting tool called Web Xpress allows pre and post media planning, duplication analysis and profiling apart from the usual trending tools. The tool is also capable of reporting at day level and at day-part level.

About IMRB International
Established in 1971, IMRB International is a pioneer in market research. IMRB is a member of the Kantar Group, part of the WPP company. Kantar is one of the world’s largest consumer insight networks. IMRB's footprint extends across 26 offices in 14 countries – Algeria, Australia, Bangladesh, Egypt, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Malaysia, Netherland, Saudi Arabia, Sri Lanka, South Korea, UAE and United Kingdom. With over 1200 full time staff, IMRB provides high quality conceptualisation, strategic thinking, execution and interpretation skills. IMRB International is the only research company in India that offers such a wide range of research based services to its clients. IMRB International's specialized areas includes consumer market research both quantitative and qualitative, industrial market research, business to business market research, social and rural market research, media research, retail research, and consumer panels.

For more details contact:
Seema Saini
Head Corporate Communications
IMRB International
Tel: 91-22-2423 3213 (DID)
Fax: 91-22-2430 4870
Cell: 91-9820626170

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