afaqs!

SAB TV to double its investments

By Anindita Sarkar , afaqs!, Mumbai | In Media Publishing | November 16, 2010
The channel will launch a weekly detective comedy series, Jaankhilavan Jasoos from November 19.

SAB TV, the family comedy entertainment channel from the MSM network, is looking sharp. It plans to increase its original content programming, as well as its investment in marketing and distribution.

The channel is geared up with its improved performance. It has moved up from 38 GRPs it used to capture about two-and-a-half years ago to 126 GRPs, as per the latest TAM data for Week 45 (C&S, 4+), 2010. Currently, it holds 9.6 per cent market share.

"In the last two years (April 2009 - March 2010), we have seen a 400 per cent growth in ratings and 200 per cent growth in ad sales revenues. It was about 30 advertisers that we had on-board then; and today, that has grown to 65 advertisers," says Anooj Kapoor, EV-P and business head, SAB TV.

Moving forward, with the beginning of the new fiscal (2011-12), SAB TV plans to extend its original programming to seven days a week. As of now, the channel will air 15 hours of original programming that includes the soon to be launched show, Jaankhilavan Jasoos.

Says Kapoor, "Until now, besides various other reasons, one of the primary constraints in extending our original programming was budgetary limitation. However, with the beginning of the new fiscal, that is, from April 01 onwards, SAB TV will double its investments in programming, marketing and distribution."

Come November 19, the channel will also open up its 9-10 pm band on Friday with Jaankhilavan Jasoos, a weekly detective comedy series produced by Fireworks and directed by Prabal Baruah. The show will be followed by the two current weeklies, Gutar Gu at 10 pm and Malegaon Ka Chintu at 10.30 pm, which are both silent comedies.

SAB TV currently runs six dailies from Monday to Thursday (8 pm-11 pm), apart from these two silent comedy weeklies on Fridays.

Pertinent to note here is that beginning November 01, SAB extended its 8 pm show, Papad Pol - Shahbuddin Rathod ki Rangeen Duniya (Monday-Thursday) and the 8.30 pm show, Taarak Mehta Ka Ooltah Chashmah (Monday-Thursday) to five-day dailies.

Speaking about the idea behind choosing the 9 pm Friday slot for the new SAB property, Kapoor tells afaqs!, "The Friday 9 pm slot witnesses heavy sampling of family entertainment viewership with reality content and other dailies that audiences are already habituated with. With this show, we are looking at breaking into the clutter, because as of now, there is no other show of such kind in this genre and with such flavour."

Jaankhilavan Jasoos revolves around 'The Private Eye Investigation' team, comprising three characters. It is led by chief detective, Jaankhilavan Jasoos, commonly known as JJ. Played by Nitesh Pandey, JJ is a bumbling detective who makes more blunders and fewer deductions at the crime scene; but manages to solve his cases by sheer luck. JJ is accompanied by his assistant, Monalisa (Sonali Nikam) and his office assistant, Ching Fung Lee (Viinod Rai). The series will feature a fresh case each week, based on robberies, thefts, kidnappings or common frauds.

SAB is marketing the new show extensively across the Sony network channels. Movie, infotainment and kids' channels are also being used for the promotions.

Kapoor informs, "We will also be using a few news channels to promote the show. Overall, approximately 4,000-5,000 TV spots have been booked to promote the show over a 10-day period."

Also, in a bid to reach out to the regional audience, SAB TV has tied up with various newspapers, wherein it has created engaging content such as comic strips to build the character profile.

"Regional papers give us a huge footprint. Therefore, we have tied up with many regional papers, such as Dainik Bhaskar, Patrika, Rajasthan Patrika, Hindustan and Navbharat on a pan- India basis, thereby reaching out to almost 5-6 crore readers," says Kapoor.

The channel is also promoting the show across 500 multiplex screens and about 8,000 digital screens in the Hindi-speaking market.

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