It’s Raining Revenues on Results Day

15 May,2014

 

By A Correspondent [summary updated, story was filed yesterday]

 

If you thought only politicians made for strange bedfellows, you mustn’t miss this. Over the last fortnight, leading English channel Times Now has been going to town with its promotions on Hindi news channel Aaj Tak. Nothing wrong with it. General entertainment channels often cross-promote teleserials on news channels, but in this case Aaj Tak has a sibling in Headlines Today which competes with Times Now.

 

On MxMIndia Tomorrow

Although every election is bigger than the previous ones, General Elections 2014 was by far the biggest for the media. These were the first general elections after the social media explosion. It was a ‘Made for Television’ election.

On Friday, May 16, we will not come to you with our regular mid-morning edition. However, we have a special offering for that day:

 

01. Livetweeting through the counting process. Our brand of commentary on the way the election results are being covered. Follow our Twitter handle: @mxmindia

 

02. A very special edition at 4pm that day. Special Columns by Ranjona Banerji, Shailesh Kapoor and Amith Prabhu. Plus Mediaah! Also, a lot more of news and reactions.

 

03. A Google Hangout on the election results at 4pm discussing the election coverage. To be aired live on YouTube and where you can interact with our guests.

 

Shailesh Kapoor

The stakes are big for Results Day or Friday, May 16. The Made-for-Television general elections of 2014 are destined to see a huge spike in viewership. “It has emerged as the most promoted date by far in our television history,” asserts Shailesh Kapoor, television insights specialist and CEO of Ormax Media, adding: “More than 20 news channels will fight a fierce battle on Results Day.  The results of this battle within the battle may have a long-lasting impact on our news television economy.”

 

Prasanth Kumar

According to Prasanth Kumar, Managing Partner, South Asia, Central Trading Group of GroupM, advertising demand for May 16 has been on the rise. “Advertisers have shown keen interest in election as a property with most taking 4-8-week sponsorship deals. For sponsors, about 10-15 per cent of their campaign monies have been parked for the Results Day.”

 

“Inventory on news channels is flexible and especially on a day when we feel there would be a lot of breaking news with results and numbers being declared, it would be difficult to put a fix on the bookings,” added Mr Kumar.

 

Anita Nayyar

When asked whether her clients have chosen to advertise on news channels given the elections fever,  Anita Nayyar, CEO of media Havas Media Group, India and South Asia said: “It is a once-in-five-years opportunity hence many of our clients are taking advantage of the same. This is a captive audience for brands like auto and liquor who typically target the male audience and has not been a deterrent.”

 

This time each party has been extremely aggressive in its marketing, says Nayyar. Eyeballs are expected to be on news. Even no IPL matches are scheduled for May 16 when cricket by itself is hot property in India.  All the channels – regional, Hindi and English (in that order) will see a spike from their regular viewership.

 

And what kind of advertisers are making a beeline for news channels? “Elections tends to see a concentration of advertisers focused towards male audiences so does news. However, given the general elections, the female viewership is also better than the normal viewing of news channels,” Ms Nayyar said matter-of-factly.

 

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