Desperately seeking the youth

By , agencyfaqs! | In Media Publishing | November 30, 2005
General entertainment channels are trying to increase their share of younger viewers because these are believed to be the advertisers' favourites

General entertainment & #BANNER1 & # channels are fighting for a common objective these days. Be it STAR One, SaharaOne or Sony Entertainment Television, they are all wooing younger viewers.

While STAR One is trying its luck with programmes such as 'Nach Baliye' and 'India Calling', SaharaOne has launched shows such as 'Kittu Sab Janti Hai' and 'Saath Rahega Always'. Sony is trying to retain its young viewers with a new show, 'Ik Ladki Anjani Si'.

Not to be left behind in the race, unique content channels such as MTV, which primarily caters to young viewers, is trying to increase the appointment viewing among youths with the launch of its second daily soap, 'Pyaar Vyaar and All That'.

So what is inspiring these channels to run after young viewers, who typically haven't been among their loyal sets of viewers?

According to TAM Media Research, 23 per cent of the television viewers across class one towns in India are in the age group of 15-24 years. And most importantly, as per industry estimates, 20 per cent of the total media spend on television is targeted at this age group.

As Debraj Tripathi, general manager, Maxus Delhi, says, "Whenever a new technology or product is launched in India, it's most likely that the young consumers will try it first, and then others will follow. So, it becomes necessary for advertisers to reach out to young consumers."

Basabdutta Chowdhuri, COO, Madison Media Plus, says, "The number of young viewers in the country has increased considerably in the last three years. Channels need to launch specific programmes to maximise their share of this increased viewership."

However, she feels that the trend of channels targeting the youth is nothing new. "Even in the past, youth-centric programmes have created quite a furore. Programmes like 'Banegi Apni Baat' and 'Campus' were successful in gluing the youth to their television sets."

Kajal Malik, regional director, Optimum Media Solutions (OMS), attributes the past success of such youth-centric programmes to their uniqueness. She says, "They were innovative concepts at that time."

However, Malik is not so optimistic about the success of today's youth-targeted daily shows. She says, "In today's technology driven age, broadcasters are bound to have a difficult time targeting the youth. Moreover, these viewers have so many things happening simultaneously in their lives that dedicated viewership cannot be expected from them."

Pradeep Hejmadi, vice-president, TAM S-Group, agrees with Malik. He says, "There are two basic factors that will help in the success of these youth-centric programmes - interactivity, where the viewers feel a part of the show, or programmes that provide them an opportunity to make it big in life."

That could explain why Sony's 'Indian Idol' and 'Fame Gurukul' were so successful with the youth.

2005 agencyfaqs!