Fever dons a new look for the new year

By Justin Thomas , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Media Publishing | January 06, 2009
The changes in the radio station's programming are the result of a survey conducted in Delhi

Desirous & #BANNER1 & # of knowing listeners' preferences, Fever FM's Delhi station had conducted a radio survey. The survey, which was conducted via print, IVRS lines, online and road shows, ran for a month up to mid-December.

Speaking to afaqs!, Gowri Satyamoorthy Kapre, national marketing and promotions head, Fever FM, says, "Usually, a study is restricted to a few hundreds. However, in this survey, the number of respondents runs into lakhs and there is a high level of interactivity involved. We wanted to address a larger listener population to get more comprehensive feedback on radio in Delhi, and not necessarily just Fever. We also wanted to know what the radio listeners in Delhi want."

Collation and tabulation of the information gathered in the survey was done by Mode, a market research agency. From the first day of this month, the necessary changes, in terms of packaging, station IDs, segments, et al., have begun.

On whether it is possible for Fever to rely completely on the survey, Kapre says, "Ultimately, you have to layer every input you get from any kind of research with a certain amount of common sense and application of one's own knowledge. It's dangerous to take it at face value. A lot of it needs to be understood better and some areas need to be probed further to understand what a particular respondent means. It definitely gives you a general sense and direction, but it needs to be applied carefully."

Among the changes that are being instituted is an expansion of the scope of the music on the radio station. For instance, a day-long request show will be aired on Saturday. Saturday nights will feature a club show, based primarily on dance music. Bollywood oldies and English music will be featured on request shows.

The station also has plans to introduce music first on Fever. Speaking about the initiative, Vinay Manek, programming head, Fever FM, Delhi, says, "A certain degree of exclusivity is something we are trying for on a regular basis. Since it is not always possible to get exclusive rights, the premise is that we will be more adventurous and gamble a little more with tracks that we foresee as potential hits."

He explains, "Till now, the industry has been playing safe. They are only plugging in songs after somebody else has broken them or TV promos have started. We will experiment with tracks before the TV promos start. We want to portray ourselves as music experts. We have certain parameters to gauge new, good music, which has the potential to be future hits - both film and non-film songs."

Other innovations include connecting with the city by taking more callers on air, a man on the streets feature (Lucky di Gaddi) and an engagement diary, which highlights things to do over the week. Another new feature, Campus Jasoos, will have campus reporters talking about the spiciest scoops in their college.

There will be more emphasis on local news as well, in the form of an assortment of quick news from entertainment, business, sports and lifestyle, which will be refreshed once every show. Kapre clarifies that the station will not include hardcore news as a segment. "The news will be more in the area of entertainment and general business news, like gold is a good buy," she states.

More humour will be integrated in the station's programming. For instance, segments like Mummy, where a kid asks questions and the mother answers in a humorous way. Another segment, Bollywood Baba, will feature the 'baba' giving positive, and sometimes sarcastic, views on movies, even if the movie is trashy.

Similarly, Somnath Tiwari & Party will emulate Bhojpuri orchestra parties in North India, with the troupe playing Bhojpuri version of popular Bollywood songs.

In all, about 20 per cent changes will be brought in to incorporate the results of the survey.