CNBC Awaaz, the
Hindi consumer channel, is planning to consolidate its programming and grow vertically in the genre.
Sanjay Pugalia, editor, Awaaz, claims, "We are the only consumer based channel in Hindi in India. We do not have political or national news as the mainstay of our channel. We have grown as a niche in our genre and hardly have any competition in the Hindi language, whether print or broadcast."
"Even the profile of our advertisers is better than other Hindi news channels. We have been growing in the SEC AB 25+ male category and reaching the smaller, but important, market hubs of the country such as Indore, Hyderabad and Bangalore. Though Hindi as a language gives us mileage in terms of TVRs, our mixed programming gives us an extra boom in terms of viewership," he adds.
Pugalia asserts that Awaaz will take another leap forward with the new programming initiatives.
He says, "Our next step will be to consolidate and improve the programmes. We will be adding more programmes to the existing line-up. We are planning to add features on shopping, as that is the second most watched programme after our stock-based shows. Besides that, we will be focussing on other genres such as jobs, education, health, career, etc. But our most important need is to make the channel more interactive."
Pugalia insists that the channel will now add more interactive sections in its programmes, in which the audience can contact the experts (on the set) though SMS, the phone or even by logging onto the TV18 website.
However, Pugalia says he prefers not to reveal any more details about the new programmes.
He adds, "The channel will also be growing vertically. Programmes such as 'Aap Ka Darbar', 'Khaas Mulaqat', 'Hum Honge Kamyaab' and other advisory shows such as 'Tax Guru' will see more programming efforts."
Pugalia elaborates, "In 'Aap Ka Darbar', we let the audience ask politicians direct questions and debate. In the first leg, we took the politicians to the bigger cities and metros such as Mumbai. Now, we will take them to mini metros such as Ahmedabad, Jaipur and Hyderabad."
The channel will also add more special series such as 'India's Most Expensive Items' in the weekend band. Pugalia says, "We will be adding day-long feature coverage on one issue, such as 'Internet and Kids', which will be a new concept for the Indian audiences. We are also starting a four-part series called 'Kal Hamara Hai', which will focus on India and its issues. We will also re-launch 'Stree Super Achievers'."
Priyanka Tiku, manager, marketing, says, "We are doing lots of on-ground programming, such as 'Hum Honge Kamyaab', which is an off-the-life-career advisory show. We have been taking the show to different places in India."
Tiku says, "Carrying forward the success we got from the online stock market game on our site, 'Moneybhai Investor', we are launching another game, 'Sensex Lottery'. In this game, viewers will have to guess the closing point of the Sensex at the end of the day to win prizes."
On the marketing front, Tiku says, "We are planning to tie up with brands that are popular in the districts to which we are taking our ground shows. For instance, we tied up with PVR Spice in Delhi for 'Hum Honge Kamyaab' and with 'Divya Bhaskar' in Ahmedabad and Vadodara. Besides that, all our new properties show a 360-degree communication assault."
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