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From The Mobile Indian
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Mumbai, January 31, 2012
There is a new sound on the airways, and it's international. 94.3 Radio One unveils a brand new phase in the crucial markets of Mumbai and Delhi.
The station had conducted a yearlong survey wherein it emerged that most listeners are bored of the unintelligent content aired on radio and no longer connect to the medium. Radio One aims to bridge the gap by delivering impactful matter wrapped in friendly breezy music. In its new avatar, Radio One will be intelligent, involving and international.
Vineet Singh Hukmani, MD of Radio One 94.3, said: "Every radio station sounds the same. Everyone's catering to the lowest common denominator, and it's about time we got formatted and got out of generic mode." He added, "We're looking at catering to a universe of 4.5 million English speaking Indians who read an English newspaper like the TOI, a news channel like times now, are regularly on facebook and twitter. These are people who look for intelligent content. We will engage and involve them with rich content in the area of national and local happenings, sport, Hollywood, business, held together by great music."
On whether the market is ready for English, he said, "There is a huge misconception about English per say in radio circles. Famous speeches like 'freedom at midnight' or 'tryst with destiny' by Pandit Jawahar Lal Nehru were made in English on radio and a very long time ago. Every parent wants his child to excel in English and it is this quality that has made us so competitive in global markets. Indians today 'thrive' globally because of their comfort with English as against the Chinese or many other 'non English adopting' countries. So if English or an international feel can do well in infotainment in Print, TV, Internet , Cinema, Outdoor ..then why not in radio? The medium is lagging behind on this front and we aim to correct it. English/International beckons with open arms! The listener and advertiser have already embraced it in other media and they will do so in radio too.
On how business will get affected because of the change, Rajeev Bhandari, COO of 94.3, said: "We are more confident than ever that business will go up from our current levels for 3 reasons. We have already experienced this in Bangalore, Pune and Ahmedabad.
Every client we have spoken to wants a differentiated product in radio so that they can target better and engage better. They already do this in print, tv, internet but not in radio. So this is not rocket science for them.
Every client in local retail too wants to shun the competitive herd in his local market and wants to cater to a higher value audience. We are already showing them how not to commoditize their local retail brands and move up not down. The economic environment is demanding a much better ROI and a highly targeted on air and on ground engagement. We are poised much more superiorly on this than any other radio station.
Anil Machado, National Programming Head of 94.3 Radio One, highlights in the new format, "Our new hosts reflect our values of Different, Intelligent, International and Involving. They bring a maturity to the dialogue with a listener who has a global outlook as defined above. The programming will engage this listener repeatedly across different time bands and make our special listener feel totally at home on Radio One.
The second change will be 3 Prime shows in the day that are well segmented in their offering and offer a very strong 'engagement product' to the 'show presenter (advertiser)'. Non music content will be of the highest quality and will stand on its own as will International and friendly music. Music that you have heard and loved, nothing too edgy or obscure.
The third change is Weekends will not be treated as 'secondary' as most radio stations do. We have made considerable investment in talent and programming on weekends and even weeknights to ensure the profile of audience we are engaging is satisfied right across the week with the highest quality."
Here's wishing the Mumbai's only international (Delhi's truly global) station the very best!
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