Bennett, Coleman and Company-owned Hindi daily Navbharat Times has launched its fourth edition from Lucknow. The edition will cover Lucknow city and Greater Lucknow but will not be distributed in the rural areas near the city. The newspaper plans to begin with an initial print run of one lakh copies and will be priced at Rs 4 (on weekdays) and Rs 5 (on Sundays). It was launched on August 4.
The new edition will have 16-20 regular pages and 4-6 pages of Lucknow Times. The newspaper will face tough competition from established players like Dainik Jagran, Hindustan and Amar Ujala, who are already in a stronger position in those areas.
Speaking about the launch, Kaustuv Chatterjee, vice-president, languages, BCCL says that NBT Lucknow is being targeted at people with a progressive mindset across all age groups. "Our editorial content is engaging, interactive, reader-centric and focusing on opportunities. It has unbiased political coverage, an unique NBT view on matters of importance to the city, state and nation, putting the reader at the heart of everything we do," says Chatterjee.
Sudhir Mishra will be the resident editor for the newspaper. He has more than 15 years of experience and has worked with Hindustan Times and Dainik Jagran.
To connect with its readers, the edition will have two special sections - Pehle Aap and Future Now. Pehle Aap will feature interactive reader content including contributions by citizen journalists and interactions of different communities, while Future Now will focus on content related to education and employment.
Aman Nayar, brand head, NBT, says, "A sizeable investment has gone for this venture and we will soon over take Dainik Jagran's circulation."
Nayar adds, "The readers in Lucknow are longing for an evolved, modern minded Hindi newspaper. Also, Lucknow is the single biggest advertising market in UP and the Times of India enjoys an unparalleled dominance in the city."
The pre-launch campaign for the newspaper was carried out in three phases spread across print, radio and outdoor associations. While a print campaign established the parent group's credentials first, the second part, Future Now, showcased the world of opportunities in career and education for the youth. The team came up with options available to students in fields of arts, science and commerce and had several professors advising students on different careers.
The third phase, Kaash, asked the people of Lucknow to share views about their dream city and what they wanted Lucknow to be.
The launch campaign of the new edition centred around 'Pehle Aap', a phenomena centric to the Lucknow ethos. NBT also released three tabloid editions of Future Now before the release of the first edition. These were circulated with Times of India and sold in stands. The company claims to have made around Rs 10 lakh from these tabloids.
NBT is also using the digital medium to promote its new edition. It has launched a separate Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/NBTLucknow) which already has more than 10,000 fans. It is also using its own brand page on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/navbharattimes) to promote the new edition.