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FICCI Frames 2012: The best content will win

By Anindita Sarkar , afaqs!, Mumbai | In Media Publishing | March 15, 2012
Despite expertise in the given domain, innovation, adaptation and the ability to tap opportunities, the trust of the consumer will not be attained if there is an absence of quality content.

Whether it is a broadcaster, a brand owner or a social networking expert, it's ultimately 'good content' that will help fight challenges and tap into opportunities ahead in the hyper-fragmented Indian eco system.

Mark Hollinger

Punit Goenka

Vishnu Som

Carolyn Everson

Addressing the audience on the first day of the FICCI Frames 2012/03 convention held at the Renaissance Powai in Mumbai, Mark Hollinger, president and CEO, Discovery Networks International noted that India's move towards 100 per cent digitisation presented an overwhelming opportunity for every player. Even in this scenario, content will continue to play the key role.

He said, "Digitisation of broadcast will make bandwidth usage more efficient, leading to wider choice for the viewers and newer opportunities for media companies. Digitisation means that viewers will be more discerning and I predict that the programming with the best storytelling, compelling characters and stunning visuals will win."

Hollinger was speaking at the discussion titled Frames Keynotes. The other keynote speakers for the session were Punit Goenka, CEO and MD, Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd, and Carolyn Everson, vice-president, global marketing solutions, Facebook. The discussion was moderated by Vishnu Som, editor, documentaries and senior anchor, NDTV.

Even with expertise in the given domain, innovation, adaptation and the ability to tap opportunities, the trust of the consumer will not be attained if there is an absence of quality content.

"Digitisation will bring in better content for the consumers, wherein a customised relationship will be built between consumers and television networks. It will bring in faster and broader penetration of HD networks and then only the best content will win," said Goenka.

Meanwhile, Som noted that when television ratings are still a debatable concern, 100 per cent digitisation will help improve the situation to a large extent. "Because, in a digital cable environment, consumers will get the chance to choose and broadcasters will know exactly what is being consumed," Som reasoned.

The need to maintain and evolve as a good content producer is not limited to television but extends to other brand formats, too. Everson, in her address, noted that the quality of content on a social networking site such as Facebook (FB) will map the personal relationships between the content and the user.

Therefore, the progress of the relationship building process will move faster when marketing shifts gears from the age of advertising to the age of stories.

"In fact, it's already begun," she said. Citing the example of Bollywood, she added, "There are currently 36 highly active Bollywood profiles on FB, which is being used to create an individual story of its own. Films are also building on their buzz though gaming (Ra.One) and storytelling (Kahaani) to influence footfalls in the theatres."

Social media works on the basic principle of creating a community and sharing information within it. "And if the quality of content built is good it will be shared," she said.

For the record, there are currently 46 million FB users in India and the panel believes that as a country, it is a promising take in terms of mobile, too.

"There are 425 million people accessing FB through mobile worldwide and India is a key contributor to this growth," Everson informed.

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