Gurgaon gets its own section in HT

By afaqs! news bureau , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Media Publishing | July 15, 2010
Gurgaon First section in the Hindustan Times, NCR edition, caters to the residents of one of the fastest growing cities in India

To enhance its presence in the NCR zone, Hindustan Times has launched a Gurgaon section in the main newspaper, under the brand name of Gurgaon First. Priced at Rs 3, the newspaper with the new section hit the stands on July 12.

& #BANNER1 & #Gurgaon First focuses on the news pertaining to Gurgaon and will contain special supplements for its readers in the region. While the City pages will be separate for Gurgaon, other sections will be common to the Delhi edition. However, Page 1 will carry stories that are important for Gurgaon.

Speaking on the launch, Shantanu Bhanja, vice-president, marketing, HT, says, "Over the coming weeks, we will have editorial coverage around these and will campaign to solve them. We are also looking at exclusive columns, features and user generated content that would connect with Gurgaon."

The company undertook a survey (of nearly 3,000 residents of Gurgaon) to find out the key issues that are affecting the residents. Based on these insights, the company has introduced the separate section for readers in Gurgaon.

"It will expand our circulation because we are the only people giving a customised paper and addressing their specific needs," Bhanja adds.

To promote the edition, HT Media has adopted an aggressive promotion and marketing strategy with a mix of outdoor, press and on-ground activations. A 'Gurgaon First Festival' is being organised at Epicentre, Gurgaon from July 16 to August 1. The event will bring together some of the best names in Indian art and culture. Acclaimed artistes such as Shubha Mudgal, Mallika Sarabhai, Anupam Kher, Shiv Kumar Sharma, Vishwa Mohan Bhatt, Kamal Sabri, U Rajesh and Rajit Kapoor will perform at Epicentre over three weekends.

"We are bringing together our editorial series as well as all the initiatives under the 'Gurgaon First' brand name. We will have a CEO Conclave on July 20, which will bring together some top executives who live and work in Gurgaon. They will discuss the present and the future of Gurgaon, trying to arrive at a charter that can then be taken up with the civic authorities by Hindustan Times," Bhanja further adds.

HT Media is looking at other NCR zones for expansion in the near future. Bhanja says, "Any part of Delhi that feels like a separate city is potentially an area where we would like to give independent news sections and serve split or sub-editions."