Cartoon Network tracks kids' preferences in its New Generation study

By afaqs! news bureau , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Media Publishing | October 08, 2009
The latest survey report is the eighth edition of the annual Cartoon Network New Generation study

Cartoon Network is out with eighth edition of its research study, New Generation, which maps the lifestyle choices of kids.

Over the past few years, the study has been focusing on kids in the age group of 7-14 years but this year, it has also included the parents of younger kids (4-6 years). The findings are based on a survey conducted across 15 centres covering all metros. The sample size for the research undertaken involved 3,431 kids in the age group of 7-14 years, along with their parents. It also covered 1,012 parents of kids in the age group of 4-6 years belonging to SEC A, B and C. The survey has been conducted by research agency TNS.

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Sharing the objective of the study, Duncan Morris, vice-president, research and market development, Turner International Asia Pacific, says, "The idea is to understand the minds of the Indian kids and probe into their likes and dislikes. Trends emerging from the exercise as such do not have a direct bearing on the programming for our channels but it certainly helps us in better packaging and promotion of our content."

The survey covered cities including Ludhiana, Delhi, Jaipur, Lucknow, Guwahati, Ahmedabad, Indore, Kolkata, Nasik, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Bengaluru, Chennai, Kochi and Madurai. Giving a quick overview of how fast things have changed over the past 10 years, Morris shared data related to increasing percentage of usage amongst kids of computer, Internet and mobile.

According to the survey, 10 years ago, only 6 per cent of kids had access to computers, in comparison to 27 per cent of kids using computers today. While mobile phones were a luxury 10 years ago, in 2009, 94 per cent of kids have access to mobile phones. Usage of the Internet, too, has been on the rise amongst kids. Only 2 per cent of kids had access to the Internet 10 years ago, but today, 8 per cent of kids have access to the medium.

The findings bring good news for brands and advertisers targeting kids. The report reveals that the annual income of Indian kids in the age group of 7-14 years is Rs 3,663, which includes pocket money and gift money on special occasions such as birthdays and festivals. About 41 per cent parents give pocket money to their children and as many as 69 per cent of kids also receive money as gift.

In 2009, Indian children stand to earn as much as Rs 664 crore as compared to their earnings to the tune of Rs 478 crore in 2008. Average monthly pocket money for boys in the country stands at Rs 259, while for girls it is Rs 257. In 1998, the average monthly income for Indian kids was Rs 193. State wise comparison shows that kids in Ludhiana get the largest sum (Rs 419) as pocket money. Kids in Nasik get the lowest amount (Rs 115).

Interestingly, Indian kids are not only high spenders but equally good at savings, too. Almost 62 per cent of the kids save a part of their money. An old favourite, the piggy bank, tops the list of saving instruments in use by the children, followed by some amount kept with parents. A sizeable chunk (8 per cent) of kids also deposits their money in banks or post offices.

As far as media consumption pattern is concerned, TV, books, newspaper and radio top the list of the kids. Television is the most frequently used media vehicle. About 92 per cent of kids watch television daily. Books and newspaper are referred everyday by as many as 72 per cent and 52 per cent of kids respectively. The Internet is accessed once in a week by 6 per cent of kids. Cinema is at the bottom of the pyramid as 10 per cent of kids use it as an entertainment medium once in a week and as many as 56 per cent of kids access it once in two weeks.

The question pertaining to parents' choice for the most favoured entertainment destination for their kids shows that 73 and 72 per cent of parents of 4-6 year olds prefer Pogo and Cartoon Network channels. Hungama is the first choice of 27 per cent of parents.

Similarly 63, 60 and 21 per cent parents of 7-14 year olds, too, voted for Cartoon Network, Pogo and Hungama respectively as the first choice of entertainment as far as television channels are concerned.

Manasi Narasimhan, associate director, research and planning, Turner International India revealed that Indian kids are fairly well informed and show local preferences in terms of choice of their role models and icons.

Bollywood actor Shah Rukh Khan topped the list of favourite actors amongst both boys and girls. The actor was the first choice for 20 per cent of boys, while 18 per cent of boys rooted for Hrithik Roshan. About 9 per cent of the boys voted for Salman Khan. The girls' favourite actor was Shah Rukh Khan, followed by Shahid Kapur and Salman Khan.

For kids in cities such as Chennai, Bengaluru and Hyderabad, regional actors such as Vijay, Ganesh and Mahesh Babu got the thumbs-up for being their icons. For both boys and girls last year, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan was the first choice among female actors but this year, she has been replaced by Katrina Kaif.

Sachin Tendulkar walks away with the favourite sportsperson's tag. While kids in Mumbai, Chennai, Bengaluru and Kolkata are rooting for Sachin Tendulkar as their favourite sporting star; Delhi and Hyderabad chose MS Dhoni as their star.

The future electorate of the country is also pretty sure about its political leanings. As to who would be their prime ministerial choice, as many as 30 per cent of the kids in the age group of 7-14 years voted for Sonia Gandhi. Her son, Rahul Gandhi, got the support of 19 per cent of the kids. Both Priyanka Gandhi and Amitabh Bachchan got a nod of affirmation from 8 per cent of the kids.

Morris cheerfully announced that the future of Indian kids appears bright as a successful career is the top goal for Indian kids, followed by desire for money and fame. Also, practical and scientific career choices find favour over creative and artistic vocations such as being a writer or painter.

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