the Indian Premier League (IPL) blitzkrieg is over, the general entertainment channels on TV are looking forward to reviving TVRs. Surprisingly, the one medium that remained untouched by the IPL matches was radio. This was revealed by Apurva Purohit, chief executive officer, Radio City, at the India Radio Forum 2008, held recently in Mumbai. Purohit is also president of the Association of Radio Operators of India (AROI).
Considering all the benefits and impact of radio, Purohit said she was surprised that advertisers would rather spend Rs 15 lakh for three prints spots in Delhi and Mumbai newspapers when the same money could give them 760 spots on radio. Why is the share of radio only 3 per cent? she asked.
Answering her own question, Purohit said the radio industry itself is to be blamed for the position it is in today. It has become like a 'sabzi mandi' (vegetable market). But what it needs are believers, not hawkers. She listed some constraints which she felt had hindered the growth of radio:
· Restrictive government policies
· No multiple licences
· No networking and limited FDI
· Advertiser inertia
· Buying is always rates per station
· Lack of original creatives made specially for radio.
Purohit ended her presentation saying, "There is no contesting that everyone in the radio industry is tremendously passionate about radio and the business of radio. However, it is time for us as an industry to showcase the strength of radio, especially the value it stands to deliver to advertisers across the board."
Drawing parallels with the United Supermarkets story, Katial talked about the IT industry in India, and then drew another parallel with the radio industry. Both, he said, have grown from infancy to great heights. Today, radio has 225 stations across 90 cities.
Katial said radio should aim to serve listeners and advertisers. The industry should stop compromising and create a principled business. It should pursue excellence, not mediocrity, by brining in more talented people.