Comedy works for STAR One

By , agencyfaqs! | In Media Publishing | June 13, 2005
The first episode of 'The Great Indian Laughter Challenge' has got a TVR of 3.2, which the highest TVR garnered by any of STAR One shows till date

It is official now. Comedy is the genre that works for STAR One. After the success in comedy shows such as 'Instant Khichdi' and 'Sarabhai vs Sarabhai', STAR One has reasserted this trend with its recently launched talent hunt show - 'The Great Indian Laughter Challenge' (TGILC).

As per TAM Media Research, (C&S, SEC AB, 10-44 years, HSM, 1 million plus cities), TGILC managed a great opening by grabbing a TVR of 3.2. The viewership was better in cities such as Mumbai and Delhi. In these two cities, TGIL managed a TVR of 4.4, each.

This is the highest TVR attained by any STAR One show till date. Even the channel's popular comedy shows - 'Instant Khichdi' and 'Sarabhai vs Sarabhai' - have managed to get the highest TVRs of 2.4 and 2.0, respectively, till date.

Amin Lakhani, director, CTG, Group M says, "The numbers are certainly encouraging for STAR One. The channel had expected high TVRs at the time of launch. Now, the numbers have been achieved. However, the biggest challenge for STAR One will be to maintain such high TVRs. For this, the channel will have to launch a few more unique and interesting shows. Scoring solely in one or two shows or events will not help the channel in the long run."

Kajal Malik, regional director, Optimum Media Solutions, says, "Talent hunts as a programming initiative are very common. Most of the shows are plain copies of previously successful concepts. But comedy talent hunts as a concept is unique and entertaining. TGILC may have equally invited participation and viewing because a career as a comedian is quite respected."

Ajay Vidyasagar, senior vice-president, marketing and communications, STAR India, says, "The rating attained by TGIL is truly commendable, as the show competed with STAR Parivaar on STAR Plus, which usually gets a rating of 10+. STAR One has been catering to an unique set of audience. Now, it's even delivering volumes."

But will this trend position STAR One as a comedy channel in the long run? Vidyasagar, defends. He says, "It is the unique content which is working well for the channel, and comedy is one of these genres."

He cities the example of 'Koffee with Karan', which was simulcast on STAR One and STAR World. Vidyasagar says the show got a television rating of 3-plus. STAR is planning to rerun the first series of 'Koffee with Karan' on STAR One this month. However, the second series will be simulcast both on STAR One and STAR World.

Lakhani of Group M explains the reason behind comedy or format shows doing well for STAR One. He says, "The kind of audience that STAR One caters to are not very regular television viewers. They probably watch television for an hour in a day. This is why short format shows work well for this channel because the viewer doesn't need to follow a storyline, and can move in or out anytime."

"The other reason behind this is that as the channel is growing older, new sets of viewers are coming on board. And, for the newer viewers, it's easy to catch episodic shows instead of daily or weekly soaps. This is probably why the viewership of comedy shows such as 'Instant Khichdi' and 'Sarabhai Vs Sarabhai' is growing," Lakhani adds.

Thakur of OMS says, "Most of the programmes on STAR One are too niche. Comedy as a genre, in comparison, broadens its audience base. This is why it generates better TVRs than other shows."

Till date STAR One's main focus has been to capture the metro viewers. Now, it plans to reach out to bigger towns and sub-metros. While the channel is strengthening its distribution network in these markets, it is also bringing in new programmes that gel with the taste of such viewers.

A Delhi-based media planner says, "Viewers from smaller towns do not relate to some of STAR One's programmes such as 'Family Business; or 'Special Sqaud'.

To that, Vidyasagar says, "These shows will complete their cycle in a few weeks. We will be launching programmes that will broaden our viewership base. The Great Indian Laughter Challenge is one such initiative." 2005 agencyfaqs!

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