Aurora Magazine

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Cadbury Pitches Women’s Cricket

Cadbury Dairy Milk collaborates with the Pakistan Cricket Board to empower female cricketers.
Updated 08 Jan, 2024 04:56pm

During the Cricket World Cup 2023, most brands want to capitalise on the strongest shared passion of the nation – cricket. This October, Cadbury Dairy Milk also joined the trend by becoming an associate sponsor of the Pakistani women’s cricket team. The objective was to empower a new generation of women cricketers using the hashtag #GetIntheGame.

There are three primary components to this endeavour. The first is a TVC (made in collaboration with the PCB), starring actor Babar Ali as a father shopping for a cricket bat for his daughter, thereby actively supporting her in realising her aspirations; he also manages to inspire the shopkeeper to think along similar lines.

The second component is the ‘pack-tivation,’ whereby Dairy Milk 180-gram** bars (their Hero Pack) have been given a limited-edition packaging that showcases Pakistani women cricketers. The objective here was to highlight outstanding female athletes and make them household names. “Packaging is the most crucial and valuable branding space for us, and we have dedicated it to our women cricket icons to give them the visibility they deserve,” says Javeria Siddiqui, Marketing Lead, Mondelēz Pakistan.

The third component is a partnership with Khelo Kricket (a non-profit organisation that runs cricket clubs and academies in Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad and Rawalpindi) and offers 50 fully funded scholarships to women for a six-month cricket training course, including providing them with equipment kits. An extension of this is a reel released by Cadbury in which Sidra Maroof (Captain of the Women’s Cricket Team) and Haris Rauf (a cricketer) elaborate on the cricket scholarships and encourage them to apply by scanning the QR code on Dairy Milk’s Hero Pack.

“In wanting to build mass appeal for the brand, we realised that cricket was a platform that we had not yet explored, although a very pertinent one to our consumers today. However, we wanted to align this with our tagline ‘Kuch acha hojaye, kuch meetha hojaye’ and tie it to the goodness the brand stands for,” says Siddiqui.

Sumaira Mirza, ECD, Ogilvy Pakistan (Cadbury’s agency), speaks about the hashtag #GetIntheGame. “Changing a mindset while keeping cultural and religious sensitivities in mind is not easy. The hashtag has a dual meaning that addresses parents, brothers and other male decision-makers who need to support women to ‘get in the game.’”

Globally, Cadbury is associated with several sports which it promotes through various initiatives. For example, they have aligned their campaigns with football in Australia and the UK and cricket in India and Pakistan. In this way, they ensure that the brand connects with the general public through its own sports interests. Hence, cricket in Pakistan, especially as from a media standpoint, cricket fans were all watching the Cricket World Cup. According to Zahra Fatima Ali, Director Planning, Ogilvy Pakistan, “We capitalised on the wave of cricket fever to give the campaign the exposure it needed, although we were careful about the way we talked about women playing cricket. Rather than compete with men, we wanted to make it a national cause and communicate the fact that there is plenty of room on the pitch for both men and women.” This was seen as important because, although women in Pakistan have been playing cricket for quite some time, they still do not attract the same recognition and appreciation their male counterparts do.

Cadbury says the target audience for the campaign is very broad, encompassing all age groups, both genders and all SECs. “It is all about shifting mindsets and so, all of Pakistan is our target,” adds Ali.

The campaign used TV to reach the wider public and Cadbury took the decision not to promote the campaign through OOH in order to avoid the message being misconstrued. Social media was used, of course, and Cadbury was also the official broadcast partner for multiple live-streaming digital channels (including Daraz, PTV Flix and Zapp) during the World Cup.

“Cadbury Dairy Milk is wherever cricket is,” asserts Siddiqui, who adds that as a result of the campaign 1,700 have already applied for the scholarship and they may have to close registrations earlier than anticipated. The shortlisting begins in November and the scholarships will be awarded by mid-December. Responding to the negative comments that found their way on social media pages, Ali says that “addressing a sensitive idea and taking a stand for people who are under-represented is always a challenge among certain segments.”

Cadbury is the market leader in the Pakistani chocolate segment, with a share of 38% (source: Euromonitor, 2023), with the rest divided among local players (CandyLand and Jubilee) and imported brands (Bounty, Galaxy, KitKat and Snickers) – although competition from imported brands is both minimal and indirect, especially given the devaluation of the rupee. In Siddiqui’s opinion, “given its premium quality, Dairy Milk has become synonymous with chocolate and is, in fact, the pioneering chocolate brand of the nation.”

With this initiative, Cadbury aims to gain further visibility and recognition for women in cricket and eventually inspire a new generation of women cricketers and develop a more inclusive sporting landscape in Pakistan.

*The correct name is Bisma Maroof. **The correct grammage is 90. The errors are regretted.