Most Indians love cricket. Nearly 8 out of 10 Indians bleed blue and are very happy about it. They think cricket, talk cricket, play cricket or just watch cricket, and bleed blue they happily will. In a country obsessed with cricket, brands are always on the move during match season. A few find innovative means to connect with cricket fans, while the majority of brands just throw media spends to showcase their products to nearly the entire family glued to their television screens.
Back in 2013, Hyundai Motor India, the then official partner for International Cricket Council had partnered with ESPNcricinfo, on a unique social media journey to discover the most passionate cricket jockey amongst a billion Indians.
To become the ‘Hyundai Cric Jockey’, aspiring fans needed to submit their commentary videos online and shortlisted ones went on to have a Google Hangout with the ESPNcricinfo editorial team. The final three winners, chosen on their merit and passion, not only won tangible incentives but were also invited to visit the ESPNcricinfo Studios to know how different teams work together to bring the best online cricket experience.
They were also invited to join the ESPNcricinfo editors and expert panel during the ICC Champions Trophy. Kartik Kannan, the winner also got the chance to write a guest column for ‘The Inbox’ on ESPNcricinfo, a popular blog section that features some of the best sports writers in the country.
Read about Hyundai Cricjockey season 1 campaign.
Part of Hyundai’s ‘Blue by Heart’ campaign, it has now announced Hyundai CricJockey season 2, which means being a Hyundai CricJockey is all the more exciting. Hyundai India is now the official partner of BCCI till 2020 across all three formats: Test, One day and T20.
The idea behind creating Cricjockey is to ‘create a platform that gives a chance to cricket fans to transition beyond an ultimate fan and become a potential professional talent,’ Akshaya Kolhe Head of Sales, ESPN Digital Media India shared in the company press release. As such the selection process is also by an expert panel – jury comprises Ajit Agarkar, former Indian cricketer; Sambit Bal, ESPNcricinfo Editor in chief; Gaurav Kalra, Senior Editor and other senior members from ESPNcricinfo editorial team.
A dedicated website has been created for the campaign. The process is similar to season 1. Top eight go to the semi-finals, from which the Top 3 will be selected based on their cricket analysis skills on the special post-match review segment for the ODI played between India and New Zealand on ESPNcricinfo MatchDay. The winner will feature on the ESPNcricinfo match day show!
To participate, one can select any of the given match scenarios and submit their commentary in the form of audio, video or text. There is also the option to submit via a miss call service. ‘Featured’ houses some of the user submissions, while ‘Daily Winners’ displays the five best entries of the day since the launch of the campaign. The website also carries a form to avail a test drive.
To spread the word on digital, Hyundai and ESPNCricinfo have indulged in short videos, gifs and visuals inviting the truly articulated cricket fans to give it a go. The social media pages of both brands are inviting cricket enthusiasts with relevant questions and test of skill.
Hyundai and ESPNCricinfo are also busy with their personal agenda on social media. Hyundai has been pitching the festive season offers on its range of four wheelers, while ESPNCricinfo is busy sharing ball by ball updates of the test matches and birthday greetings for all our cricketers.
— HyundaiIndia (@HyundaiIndia) September 25, 2016
— HyundaiIndia (@HyundaiIndia) October 10, 2016
Do you remember this moment from a Kolkata Test? #HyundaiCricJockey
— ESPNcricinfo (@ESPNcricinfo) September 29, 2016
India have taken their lead past 400. Time to declare?
— ESPNcricinfo (@ESPNcricinfo) October 11, 2016
Timely. Digital driven. Asset building
A lot can happen over cricket and most brands are in the know. Yet Hyundai India and ESPNCricInfo seem to have pulled it off in a cricket crazy nation like ours. Building a property like CricJockey is a win-win for consumers as well as the brands involved. While passionate cricket fans can hone their talent for cricket analysis and probably find a stepping stone into the professional world of cricket analysis and commentary, CricJockey’s daily prizes ensures digital audiences are also engaged throughout the match season.
Besides, CricJockey is also fortunate to have the festive season coincide with the test matches; while the auto maker and the online cricket portal make the most of it. To be able to share the podium with the experts is the ultimate high for any cricket fan, and our country is filled with cricket experts in every nook and cranny.
Hyundai CricJockey Season 2 indeed caters to the diehard cricket fans in the country. While season 1 was well received with over 8000 entries, season 2 holds the promise of more fame, professional guidance and probably a career in content creation for cricket.