What Ticks for Indian Consumers/ Family – Tarun Katial and Anooj Kapoor

10 Sep,2014

Continuing with our extracts from the second edition of the MxMIndia Annual, we present contributions by Tarun Katial and Anooj Kapoor



Broadcasters will opt for genre segmentation in the future


By Tarun Katial


TV broadcast is maturing to a point where the only dominating content that plays will not be just TV soaps. The audience today is warming up to different genres providing different content. For example you have channels like Life OK giving you programmes like ‘Shapath’ and ‘Savdhaan India’ or someone like Sony that airs ‘CID’ etc.


Even comedy as a genre has really picked up in the recent past and the credit for that goes to shows like ‘Taarak Mehta Ka Ooltah Chashmah’, ‘Comedy Circus’ etc. It goes to show that when it comes to the overall contribution towards GRPs, it is not just the soaps and reality shows that are bringing in the numbers; the contribution is coming from other genre of programming as well.


Also, I am of the opinion that the linear format of television will get restricted to only the top one or two channels. Beyond that, a lot of it will become episodic in nature and people will want a sense of completion by the end of the whole episode. So the stickiness will only be for the period of half-hour than the overall level. Thus people may tend to use different channels for different days depending on the content that they watch.



Having a sound positioning strategy is vital


By Anooj Kapoor


When SAB was launched in the year 2000 by Sri Adhikari Brothers, majority of the channel’s viewership was coming from male audiences. Now 14 years in the business, it has grown and evolved as a complete family entertainment channel.


Today, it offers content for all members of an Indian family – housewife, male members of the family, kids and also young adults. What has made the channel so successful? Well, the answer to that question is simple. Once the channel decided on its positioning – which is light-hearted comedy, we stuck to it and believed in the thought that the channel can attain big success, even with that specialist kind of positioning which we created for ourselves.


So that is one big factor why we’re successful as a channel. We introduced new shows, interesting formats, but while we did that – we never deviated from our core positioning. Shows such as Taarak Mehta Ka Ooltah Chasmah, Lapataganj, FIR, Jeannie Aur Juju and Chidiya Ghar are all examples of different shows that have done exceedingly well. Taarak Mehta Ka Ooltah Chashma has done more than 1200 shows and is one of the most liked and popular shows in India.



In addition, I see the concept of ‘family’ disappearing in the near future. Channels will start shortlisting on the basis of demographics and years. Hence, to hope that you are going to appeal to all sections from 4-54 yrs will be a big challenge. As for radio, the era of doing contemporary hits and standard new music is over.


Players will have to start making formats they want and the audiences they want to reach out to and the kind of content they want to build. The era of happy-go-lucky RJs are clearly over. Players are now looking for those who will offer credible sources of information and those that can add value.



Lapataganj crossed 850 episodes in its earlier avatar and is now doing well in its second season (currently on air). As part of the strategy, we do not showcase saas-bahu quarrels or any such negative things in our programmes. We have consciously stayed away from reality formats such as dance competition, for instance. And it is something we will not bring to the channel in the future as well. On the contrary, other channels in the GEC space have tried to get into comedy, but have not been very successful. I believe there is space for only one channel in the comedy space.


It is going to be difficult for any new channel to enter and survive as there is limited talent pool in this space. And we have been successful as a comedy-centric family entertainment channel for many years now. How can we as a channel evolve from here and how can we become a leading Hindi entertainment channel in India? Well, we’re making steady progress towards that goal and I’m sure that sooner or later it will happen. As I said, the key is in staying focused on your positioning strategy and working or striving to make the overall viewership experience better.




Tomorrow: Thursday, September 11:  Men – Ajay Kakar and Manish Kalra


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