Come January 24, kids will have some specific time-slots dedicated for them on National Geographic. The channel will launch a programming band 'Nat Geo Junior' for the kids viewers in the age- group of 7-14 years.
Dilshad Master, senior vice-president - programming, National Geographic Channel, says, "This is for the first time that the channel will have an exclusive time band for kids."
In an earlier interview with agencyfaqs!, Master had said that the channel was in the process of finalising shows and programmes for the kids band.
Talking about the inspiration behind this programming strategy, Master says, "During our promotions of 'Mission Mars', we had run an offline contest at different schools, where the winners were taken to visit NASA. And, as many as 1.5 lakh entries were received for the contest. We were overwhelmed with the children's interest in National Geographic. That's when we decided to start an exclusive time band for kids."
The programming band - which will be aired between 4 pm to 5 pm on weekdays and between 10 am to 12 pm on weekends - has been conceptualised and put into action after conducting extensive research on the evolving children's entertainment market in India.
Zubin Gandevia, managing director, National Geographic Channel says, "The new block seeks to provide a balance between high quality kids' entertainment and an environment that encourages learning for young viewers."
In this time band, the channel will have everything from animation to science to adventure. Master says, "We wanted to have programmes that speak the kids' language but without diluting the sanctity of National Geographic."
Nat Geo Junior will have an interesting animation show 'Doc Eureka'. This 15 minute show will bring alive inventions and inventors in an animated format. The show will have two capsules of seven minutes each. Master says, "Certain facts such as how and when a bicycle, airplane, or a light bulb was invented is a matter of interest for the kids."
The other show that will be launched during this time band is 'Backyard Science'. This show targeted at the children aged 6-12 years will take science out of the laboratory and making it a real time experience for the kids and by the kids. This 15 minutes daily show features short lively animation sequences, as well as cool graphics and images to explain the more detailed ideas such as how noodles are made from pasta machine.
'Serious' is another series on this programming band, where eight children, under the guidance of trained professionals, learn to work as a team and survive in conditions far beyond anything young people would normally experience. "Spending weeks in a jungle or a desert, or the arctic region is not only exciting for those kids who actually participated in the adventure, it will be equally interesting for the kids who will watch it," says Master.
To give an Indian touch to this time band, the channels will also air interviews with kids across the country on different relevant and recent subjects.
For promotions, the channels is looking forward to cross-channel promotions across the STAR Network. It will also come up with unique offline activities soon. Master, however, didn't divulge details on the out-of-home marketing plans.
© 2005 agencyfaqs!First Published : January 20, 2005