Fantasy sports platform Paytm First Games launched its new marketing campaign called ‘Make the Right Choice’ with an advertisement featuring its brand ambassador and former Indian cricket team star Sachin Tendulkar.
The advertisement is a reproduction of a real-life incident from Sachin Tendulkar’s early childhood, according to Paytm First Games.
“Sachin is a true legend and an inspiration for millions across our country. With this brand film, we have shared one of the life-changing moments of Sachin’s life wherein he was faced with a difficult choice,” explained Sudhanshu Gupta, COO of Paytm First Games.
Gupta believes that Sachin Tendulkar’s story will strike a chord with viewers and the message also connects well with their product.
“It is our humble endeavour to inspire people to make the right choices in life irrespective of how difficult they might seem.
“The theme fits well with our fantasy sports game as well which requires users to have in-depth know-how and research of the game and players and make strategic choices while making their team,” he added.
The ad was released during the ongoing Indian Premier League (IPL) 2020, a time when fantasy sports gaming activities shoot up and platforms witness accelerated growth.
However, the ad has faced backlash on social media for the portrayal of a child - presumably a young Sachin Tendulkar - being slapped by his coach.
Some users claimed that the ad normalised slapping a child, while others deemed it as child abuse.
Slapping a child in an ad isn’t justified by putting a super. Sick. Cheering & supporting a team also isn’t a bad thing. It’s called sportsmanship. What a horrible ad. Shockingly bad message. Is this what you want to teach children? Or maybe I didn’t get it? 🤔 https://t.co/KeYI12z5I5— kunal kohli (@kunalkohli) September 23, 2020
The fantasy sports app of Paytm First Games and its parent, digital payments platform Paytm, were recently delisted from Google’s Play Store for violating Google’s gambling policies.
The app was later reinstated on the Google Play Store but users cannot join contests involving real money.