STAR One: Indulging in prime time romanticism

By Sangeeta Tanwar , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Media Publishing | May 25, 2009
The channel takes pride in being an efficient channel, with six-eight hours of original programming

STAR One is busy reaching out to the young working professional couples as it experiments with new content mix and programming lineup. To focus on a niche segment of the audience, comprising married and unmarried youth aged below 35 years, the new programming includes a heavy dose of romanticism to woo the target group.

The channel is committed to these experiments to separate and distinguish itself from youth channels such as MTV and Bindaas, which largely cater to teenagers.

Speaking to afaqs!, Ravi Menon, executive vice-president and general manager, STAR One, says, "Our focus is on presenting ourselves as a platform that has interesting and entertaining content for viewers in the age group of 17-34 years. These are the viewers who are young working professionals, most of them already married or on the verge of getting married. Our content has to reflect and fulfil this group's aspirations."

Menon views the channel's target audience as someone who is vulnerable, receptive and enthusiastic about new ideas and faces. To attract this group, Menon shares that fresh content will be all about falling in love and thus all new stories and characters will have elements of love and romanticism.

Currently, STAR One clocks 62-65 GRPs. As a sister GEC for the network's flagship channel, STAR Plus, STAR One is a channel that has great strength in urban markets. With a focus on fiction shows and a strict no to family soaps, the channel hopes to expand its reach in the urban space.

The first effort in this direction is the announcement of the new celebrity couple show, Hans Baliye. The show features eight celebrity 'jodis' (couples) from the television industry and aims to capture nuances of humour between them.

The show will go on air on May 30 at 7:30 pm. Hans Baliye comes after the success of comedy shows such as The Great Indian Laughter Challenge and Laughter Knights. Comedy is the glue which holds the show together and its real appeal rests on the chemistry between the celebrity couples.

The channel is currently working on two-three projects and refused to share the details as the programmes are still in the planning stage. The new shows will build on the channel's existing shows such as Miley Jab Hum Tum and Mil Gayye.

The new shows will be used to fill the primetime (9-11 pm) slot on the channel. Menon adds that the efficiency of STAR One is in its minimum hours of original content. Currently, the channel has seven-eight hours of original programming. Library content and syndication deals make up for the rest of the programming.

Original and repeat telecasts make up for 75 per cent of its content, while library content and syndicated programming comprise the remaining 25 per cent. While borrowing content from the STAR library, the channel looks for evergreen subjects. During the summer vacations, it is airing popular show Hatim (originally on STAR Plus) for kids. The channel also airs four-five movies in a week.

As part of a network deal, the channel has also picked up Godrej Khelo Jeeto Jiyo, an advertiser funded programme which will be simultaneously aired on three STAR Network channels - STAR Plus, STAR One and STAR Utsav.

Similarly, it plans to showcase Amul Voice of India - the singing talent hunt show originally telecast on STAR Plus. STAR One also plans to have dedicated slots for bigger content deals that will help it reach the family audience, too.

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