What Ticks for Indian Consumers/ Women – Raj Nayak and Sathyamurthy Namakkal

19 Sep,2014

Continuing with our extracts from the second edition of the MxMIndia Annual, we present contributions by Raj Nayak and Sathyamurthy Namakkal

 

‘You can engage with women through content’ 

 

By Raj Nayak

 

There is absolutely no doubt that women today form a critical mass for GECs. But if you look at the television viewing audience, we’re still primarily a single TV household country despite urban India undergoing a paradigm shift in its preferences. So whilst there is a skew towards women, it’s not that women viewership is 90 per cent and male viewership just 10 per cent. It’s a 55- 45 ratio. But, the remote control is in the hands of women.

 

It’s the truth, unless when it comes to major sporting events and news, the remote control, invariably is with women. So how do you engage with women? It has to be with content. The way we have structured our channel is – our fiction programming primarily targets women, exception to the rule being ’24’. And that’s not true for us only; it’s true for all GECs. Fiction, to a large extent targets women.

 

 

The womeniya of today

 

 

By Sathyamurthy Namakkal

 

A comparison of current media consumption habits with those about five years ago, of women in HSM markets, reveals the following interesting trends:

 

• She continues to spend substantial time watching her serials and soaps on TV.

• However, she has begun topping it up with other content on TV like reality shows, infotainment programmes, music etc.

• Her time spent watching kids programmes has gone up substantially, indicating that she wants to spend more time accompanying her kids watch their favourite programmes…

• Watching news on TV, be it in English or the regional languages, has come down. However, her time spent reading newspapers and magazines has marginally increased by 5- 8 minutes a day.

• Also, more women are reading newspapers and magazines, especially special interest magazines on health, lifestyle etc. She has begun to spend more time watching sports content on TV.

• Percentage of urban women accessing internet at home has tripled in the last six years.

• On the other hand, the rural counterpart continues to spend more time watching TV and reading magazines.

 

 

What a non-fiction entity does for you is it brings different kinds of audiences to the channel…like it brings in a lot of young audience, primarily male and of course, even women love to watch non-fiction shows. Not that they only watch fiction. We engage with our audiences off-air at times by engaging in doing tactical stuff; things like branding a lady’s compartment train and similar such initiatives. For GECs, if you’re doing off-air promotion, you have to go mass, you cannot segregate too much unlike channels that air premium content.

 

So in our strategy, women are very much part of that mass. Another point to note here is that women are ever-evolving – they’re changing. For instance, if you go to Dadar railway station in Mumbai, you will find men buying vegetables. A few years back when I was selling a news channel, I happened to discuss with a marketing head of a bank. They said we want to target women, why should we do it with a news channel? The fact is that women have evolved.

 

Today, women have a bank account, they too buy cars, they hold credit cards etc. So the definition of women has changed completely. Women have come of age, they have evolved. So when you’re a mass platform and when you have a skew for a particular target segment, you got to have a mix because you can’t run a GEC channel with only women as your target audience. Coming back to the moot point, you have to cater to a wider audience. You can’t narrow down and say – this is the audience. If you have compelling content, the time slot doesn’t matter.

 

 

 

So, what does this changing trend tell us – women today, want to be an integral part of the society, and more importantly, her family wants to be “well informed”. This is probably her way of interacting better with her male counterparts. She no longer wants to be restricted to her own zone but wants to liberate herself and play an increasing and improved role. This of course is helped in no mean measure by the plethora of media options now available to her.

 

 

 

 

Next: Monday, September 22: Teens – Kiran Khalap and Siddhartha Mukherjee

 

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