Bindass: Time for true love

By Raushni Bhagia , afaqs!, Mumbai | In Media Publishing | August 21, 2013
Bindass gears up to bring true love stories, now that the channel's love-betrayal based reality show, Emotional Atyachaar has reached its fourth season.

Love and heart-break is an instant connect, be it betrayal, infidelity, double-timing or a love story full of obstacles. Based on the insight that relationships are one of the most important parts of youth's lives, Bindass is coming up with its new show, Yeh Hai Aashiqui.

Yeh Hai Aashiqui

Shalini Sethi

Bikram Duggal

Although the youth general entertainment channel from Disney UTV has many love-based reality shows, this will be a show based on true love stories. To be launched on August, 25 at 7 pm, the series will showcase love stories that are unique and unusual. Some such stories will feature a woman stuck in a bad marriage who falls in love with a young boy in the neighbourhood; and a young woman who falls in love with a terminally ill patient. The stories will be telecast in a dramatised format.

Shalini Sethi, director, programming, Bindass says that some of these stories might have testimonials from the people who are actually part of those stories and talk about their experiences at the end of the episode. The channel already has about 15 episodes in the pipeline and may extend it based on the popularity of the show. Crowd sourcing could be an option for the stories in the later stages of the show.

Bikram Duggal, director, marketing, Media Networks, Disney UTV suggests that the new show will take forward the channel's strategy of building shows on relationships.

"After Emotional Atyachaar that deals with betrayals, Yeh Hai Aashiqui explores a very different facet of relationships. These are those love stories where people had to fight too hard to achieve the love of their lives; love stories that are not linear."

Sethi suggests that the show will equally cater to the audience beyond the channel's core TG (C&S 15-24 years). She explains, "Love stories are universal. No matter if everyone has heard about Romeo and Juliet and Heer-Ranjha, the generations aren't bored of it. The connect is huge when it comes to love stories."

Interestingly, the channel gets close to 60 per cent of its viewership from audiences out of its core TG.

Yeh Hai Aashiqui will compete with shows like Gumraah (a crime-based show) on Channel V and Time-out with Imam (comedy reality) on MTV, which are aired on the same slot. While Sethi agrees that Emotional Atyachaar has become a rage now, he adds, "Even Emotional Atyachaar was a new show at some point in time. Learning is another thing that these shows give the TG. As long as you keep teaching them, they will definitely come and watch the show."

Several well-known actors from Indian television will be seen portraying characters on the show. The title track has been created by Abhishek Verma (from Vicky Donor) and the show will be hosted by Vikrant Massey (of Lootera, Qubool Hai and Balika Vadhu fame).

The channel plans to spend about 20 per cent of its total annual budget to market the show. Digital will be at the core of the campaign.

The first promotional move will be a crowd-sourced movie on Instagram. Bindass has organised a contest on Instagram for the first-ever Instagram movie to create further buzz for the show. For this contest, Bindass will upload a promo that will showcase half a story, leaving the end open to interpretation. Participants need to complete the story in 15 seconds and upload it on their Instagram page, after tagging it with Bindass. The three clips with the highest number of Likes will each win a Canon mark 550D. The winners also get a chance to make a short movie (of one minute) which will also be posted on Instagram and may be aired on the channel as a vignette.

Apart from this, a Facebook app called 'F.L.A.M.E.S.' has been launched for the show. It is a digital extension of an old game. A Facebook quiz named 'How crazy is your love?' will also measure the crazy quotient of the user's current relationship.

Twitter will be used to circulate love stories in 140 characters with the hashtag, #YehHaiAashiqui and create conversations around it. The channel has tapped 550 screens in 41 cities in the HSM 1 million plus markets. The theatres will run the promos of the show for all the movies that come in the next one month. An out of home campaign will be launched in Mumbai and Delhi. On television, Bindass has tapped network channels such as Bindass, UTV Stars and UTV Movies, with 1800 spots.

Vini Cosmetics has come on board as the title sponsor of the show. Two to three associate sponsors are expected to join the team.

As for the expected hike in the ad-rates, Duggal suggests, "Ad rates are anyway on the upswing. Post DAS2, we have gained the maximum in the genre (about 70 per cent), the average GRPs have come to 45 from 30 (about six months back). So that performance led rate increase is already happening. This should fuel our plans, I expect."

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