Jio 4G Phones Open New Advertising Avenues during IPL

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We are currently in the era of intelligent feature phones, a shift that commenced with the introduction of the original JioPhone in 2017. Since then, the widespread adoption of 4G feature phones with internet capabilities has played a pivotal role in enhancing internet accessibility for a large demographic, extending the online world to millions of individuals, including blue-collar workers, domestic help, security guards, small farmers, and artisans in both rural and urban India. In 2023, JioBharat, a feature-packed device offering improved camera capabilities, extended battery life, and more affordable plans, was released at a significantly lower price, disrupting the 4G feature phone market.

The success of JioBharat, marked by a 60% migration from 2G to 4G within a mere two months of its launch, underscores the growing demand for cost-effective and technologically advanced mobile devices. With product variants like JioPhone and JioBharat, the goal is to expedite the transition for 250 million mobile users still utilizing 2G services on feature phones. This ambitious plan is rapidly turning into reality. Notably, in July 2023, Jio stood out as the sole telecom operator to attract rural users, bringing 2 million individuals from the heartland into the 4G network.

Jio’s strategic emphasis on reaching rural users has yielded positive results, with 2 million new users from rural regions joining the 4G network in July 2023. Priced at Rs 999, JioBharat has become a catalyst for empowerment, enabling individuals, including women and students, to access the online world through cost-effective internet-enabled devices.

This transformative shift is not limited to rural areas; it extends to media-dark regions where users are adopting an internet-centric lifestyle. As the IPL approaches, an estimated 35-40 million users are anticipated to stream matches on Jio’s 4G feature phones, presenting a substantial opportunity for brands to engage with this diverse and previously untapped audience.

To enhance the user experience during IPL 2024, JioCinema will offer free streaming of all 74 matches in multiple regional languages. This creates a valuable platform for brands to convey creative narratives and engage with users. Advertising options such as pre-roll roadblocks and custom communication further empower marketers to reach this extensive audience during the IPL season.

Sujata Dwibedy, Chief Investment and Trading Officer at Amplifi, Dentsu International, emphasizes the significant potential for brands in various sectors, including FMCG, Retail, Construction, and BFSI, to connect with untapped audiences in both urban and media-dark markets.

The upcoming IPL season in 2024 marks a turning point in advertising history, with JioCinema democratizing advertising opportunities on a grand scale. Brands are urged to swiftly adapt and capitalize on the early mover’s advantage presented by this unique advertising landscape. The convergence of affordable devices, widespread internet access, and a major sporting event provides a fertile ground for brands to grow their consumer base manifold.

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Megha Singh

I am a mosaic of every person, thing, or substance I have loved even for a heartbeat. I love this world in all those grey areas where it's not just black and white. Every day I learn and unlearn things to become a better and beautiful version of myself so that one day I can proudly say ' You made it girl'

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