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BBC World targets Indian students, banks on University Challenge

By , agencyfaqs! | In | August 10, 2004
Channel says, 18.3 per cent of its viewers is college students, while NDTV 24X7 has 17.8 per cent and Aaj Tak 15.2 per cent


University Challenge, which has been successfully running on televisions in the UK for the last 40 years and thus, & #BANNER1 & # becoming one of the longest running shows worldwide, is set to start its second innings on BBC World for Indian viewers.

The first series of the show was launched in India on August 2003 and had turned out to be a success story for the news channel, especially garnering a share of youth viewership.

Jane Gorard, director of marketing, BBC World, says, "Our audience research and official peoplemeter data show that the show attracted a significant number of viewers in the age group of 15-24, and it has already become one of the channel's many must-watch programmes,"

She adds, "In fact, BBC World has been found to attract more students than any other news channel. With recent TGI data profiling of BBC World's audience, it has been found that college students constitute 18.3 per cent of our viewers, while NDTV 24X7 has 17.8 per cent and Aaj Tak 15.2 per cent."

The quiz show hosted by Siddhartha Basu will have 28 teams including ones from IIMs, and IITs competing against each other in the televised rounds. The finals of the quiz competition is scheduled for early next year.

The final 28 teams were selected through written tests conducted in more than 20 centres and more than 350 colleges applied for participation from across the country. Each episode of the quiz is of 30-minute duration and will be telecast on Thursdays at 10 pm.

BBC World has also planned a 360-degree marketing approach that includes press, online, radio and mobile promotions apart from on-ground events, multi-media consumer campaigns and trade marketing initiatives.

As students and youths are the TG for this programme, BBC World will reach out the the college students taking University Challenge to them.

Gorard says, "We are offering college students and quiz enthusiasts in New Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata and Bangalore the chance to pit their wits against the reigning University Challenge champions, with Siddhartha Basu hosting special contests in the four cities this month."

As part of this initiative, last year's winners from Sardar Patel College of Engineering in Mumbai will take on each city's finest team. The on-ground event will give students in the four metros the chance to experience the thrill of University Challenge live on stage.

The highlight of other campaigns will be again quiz contests, through which more than 300 prizes are on offer, including the mega prize - a trip for two to visit the famous BBC World TV studios in London. Also on offer are camera phones and BBC World T-shirts.

For online promotions, BBC World has also tied-up with Yahoo! India. The portal is setting up a dedicated microsite for the online quiz, which will be accompanied by an SMS contest. The same promotion last year attracted a total of two million entries online and nearly 90,000 entries via SMS.

University Challenge will also make its presence felt in the press, with half-page double spreads in top dailies and magazines throughout August and September, and special competitions on FM radio stations in the four major metros will certainly be an add-on.

As localised content has been a key to success for any international channel in India, BBC World has also launched a couple of other localised shows

Gorard says, "We have recently launched Business Bites, where Ronnie Screwvala lunches with leaders of rival companies to discuss the issues facing their industries."

Another series launched on the channel is Bollywood Bosses which talks about some of the biggest names in Indian cinema.

Gorard says, " For all these programmes we have received good responses from sponsors and advertisers. While, Bollywood Bosses is sponsored by Tata Indigo and Business Bites is being sponsored by Indian Airlines.

Last year's University Challenge was sponsored by Samsung Sound, LIC, the Aditya Birla Group and Singapore Roars.

Gorard hopes that the second innings of University Challenge will equally excite the advertisers as well as the viewers. © 2004 agencyfaqs!

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