question hour

Harish Bijoor | Updated on January 17, 2018

Endorser du jour Virat Kohli has what it takes

The package that is Virat Kohli

Is Virat Kohli the new Sachin Tendulkar of the brand endorsement world?


Jayanthi, absolutely! Virat Kohli is a package. He has the skill of the game of cricket, the looks, the attitude and the English! This makes him what he is. If you look back at cricketers and captains, it is seldom that you hit an entire package in sheer marketing terms. There have been legends who have had one gap or the other, if not more than one. Kohli has none. Add to it his romantic involvement, and that makes for great chemistry.

Kohli is also a cricketer who has been seen as one who has climbed slow but steady. Even at this young age, he has been around for over 10 years now. In this time, his personality has been out there for India, and cricket-crazy Indians to explore, prod and enjoy. He has endured, and played with great panache. And that’s the full package.

Olympics 2016 has not attracted too much marketing attention in India. Why?


Mohan, the Olympics is an event, not an ongoing sport. Events have the habit of attracting a whole lot of eyeballs. From that perspective, the Olympics should be an event marketers love. However, the one big hurdle is the price tag. Further, as the event is horizontal, in the sense that a whole gamut of sporting challenges are covered, the eyeballs are splintered after the opening ceremony and the closing ceremony. To an extent, the opening and the closing are the true-blue eyeball events of significance. And these are expensive.

Economics plays a big role in decisions to be with or without the Olympics. Brands also love events that witness the focused passion of larger numbers. Cricket, soccer, basketball and baseball leagues in the US offer that. Sports that are team events and build from one step to another, with many followers, are liked. The Olympics, in a large sense, is not about all that.

Fragmented viewership is the key point. That discourages. Encouraging, however, is the spirit of the challenge that comes every four years. It is history and heritage, but sadly, all that has been redefined in the era of league tournaments in other sports. When you can harvest just as many eyeballs with a deeper passion that builds step by step and game by game, why spend on the Olympics, is the key thought.

Published on August 25, 2016

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