Kid-based programmes have never been the driver on general entertainment channels. For these broadcasters, it is an assortment of soaps, thrillers, gameshows and films that do the trick. However, a visible trend over the last six months or so has been the emergence of children's programmes such as Sonpari, Shakalaka Boom Boom and the recent Karishma Kaa Karishma (on STAR Plus), which are not only drawing audiences but also attracting advertisers. "They have a dedicated viewership," explains a planner from Mumbai, "implying that planners and advertisers are drawn to these shows."
A closer look at the Top 100 shows on C&S television will give an idea on the performance of the three programmes. For the week of June 29-July 5 Sonpari garnered a TVR of 5.5 (No 21), Shakalaka Boom Boom had 3.2 (No 54) while Karishma Kaa Karishma had 2.6 (No 65). The week before, that is, June 22-28, the figures were: Sonpari - 5.7 (No 19), Karishma Kaa Karishma - 3.6 (No 40) and Shakalaka Boom Boom - 2.9 (No. 59).
Sonpari, in particular, has been the driver of kids' programming on STAR TV, hovering near the Top 20 mark for a long time now. For the week of January 26-February 1, 2003, for instance, Sonpari stood at No 22 with TVR of 5.01, while a month later - during the thick of the World Cup - between February 23-March 1, the show garnered a TVR of 4 (No 42). By the start of the holiday season for kids, that is, May 4-10, 2003, Sonpari had moved up to No18 with a score of 6.1 (Base population: C&S 4+, All India surveyed).
Apart from an interesting storyline - about a girl without a mother, who has a fairy by her side - Sonpari boasts of an impressive star cast including Mrinal Kulkarni in the title role, Subhash Ghai-find Vivek Mushran (who debuted along with Manisha Koirala in Saudagar more than a decade ago) and veteran actress Sashikala.
What has also worked in Sonpari's favour - indeed the other two shows as well - is the strategic placement of the three in the 7.00-8.30 pm time band on weekdays. "In metro homes, this is the time when the kid takes charge of the remote," explains a media observer. "The male member of the family has not returned home as yet, the woman is busy with other chores, while the kid is taking it easy after a hard day's work at school followed by tuitions. He is thus able to spend quality time in front of the television without adult intervention, and, if a show targeted at him catches his eye, he is bound to watch it."
From a planner's point of view, steady viewership during the 7.00 to 8.30 pm time band means another avenue to park advertiser money at a reasonable price. "Air-time rates of the saas-bahu soaps are high," points a planner with a Top 10 agency. "Shows such as Sonpari deliver ratings, while being not as heavy on a client's budget." Nonetheless, with general entertainment channels seriously looking at delivering audiences, one surely hopes there would be more such programmes to hook kids on to television sets. © 2003 agencyfaqs!