Kaun Banega Crorepati on the hot seat on first day

By Anushree Bhattacharyya , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Media Publishing | October 12, 2010
According to Ormax Media, the fourth season of KBC can open at 5.5-6 TVR or even more

The return of Kaun Banega Crorepati with actor Amitabh Bhachchan on Sony has triggered excitement amongst media planners and analysts. According to media research and consulting firm Ormax Media, the fourth season of KBC can open at 5.5-6 TVR or even more.

Based on a series of syndicated work done by Ormax Media, including awareness tracking tool Showbuzz, the findings reveal that KBC has the highest ever score, with 44 per cent unaided recall in the week before its launch. This is higher than Colors' Bigg Boss Season 4, which recorded a recall of 40 per cent; and STAR Plus' Pratigya, which registered 29 per cent recall, the two most successful launches at the pre-launch week stage.

Speaking to afaqs!, Shailesh Kapoor, chief executive officer, Ormax Media, says, "If the awareness scores are any indication, KBC opening episode may cross 5.5-6 TVR, even 7 if the campaign works even harder on the weekend. In Bigg Boss' case, the recall picked up from 40 per cent in the pre-launch week to 69 per cent in the launch week -- an unprecedented score. We can expect a similar trend for KBC."

Further, according to Ormax Media, the viewer preference between fiction and non-fiction shows is now far more balanced than it was about a year ago. Kapoor adds, "A year ago, 78 per cent of the audience would have chosen fiction as their preferred programming type. However, now, it is only 64 per cent. This is a very sharp change in just one year; as a result, if the content delivers, we can expect weekday non-fiction shows to start crossing TVRs of 3.5-4, which never happened in the past."

The first season of KBC started in 2000 and was hosted by Amitabh Bachchan. As per TAM ratings, the first season had a total of 270 episodes and the average TVR for the season was 9.8 (C&S 4+, HSM). The show then returned to STAR Plus after a break of four years in 2005 by the name of Kaun Banega Crorepati Dwitiya. The second season had 60 episodes and registered an average TVR of 10.6.

The show subsequently made a comeback after a gap of two years with actor Shah Rukh Khan as the host on STAR Plus. The third season, which had 53 episodes, recorded an average TVR of 6.8.

So -- will season four of Kaun Banega Crorepati be able to cast the same magic?

According to Sudha Natrajan, president and chief operating officer, Lintas Media Group, the recall of KBC is already very high because of the high intensity of promotions. Natrajan believes that the opening episode can register about 5 TVR.

Ajit Varghese, managing director, Maxus, says, "Going by the rating generated by Colors' show, Bigg Boss, Kaun Banega Crorepati can open at 6-7 TVR in top cities and later stabilise at 4-5.5." For Varghese, if a programme of that stature is not able to garner high ratings, then there is no point in investing in it. For the fourth season of KBC, the 'nostalgia' factor is a bigger reason for the audiences to watch, rather than anything else.

Anita Nayyar, chief executive officer, MPG, opines that the first episode of KBC Season 4 can gather TVR of 4-5 and later can stabilise at a TVR of 3, or can even drop to 2.5 later.

She adds, "Bigg Boss opened on a very good note. However, one cannot forget that the genres of the shows are very different and have different categories of audiences. While there are chances of certain number of audiences migrating from Bigg Boss to KBC, both the shows will sustain with their own sets of viewers."

However, Rohit Maheshwari, research analyst, KR Choksey Securities asserts that the rating for the fourth season can be lower than the previous season as the reality show does not have anything new to offer to the audience. This is where Bigg Boss scores ahead of KBC, as Colors has changed the host of the show every year, bringing renewed novelty to the programme.

With the media talking several numbers, the final call will be taken by the Indian audience, when the curtain is raised on Sony at 9 pm.

© 2010 afaqs!