The biggest festival in Kerala - Onam - was celebrated on August 28, 2004. And to mark the occasion, both Malayala Manorama and Mathrubhumi,
the number one and two dailies in Kerala, had kicked-off aggressive brand-building measures apart from launching twin issues a week before the festival day.
The objective was clear - to not only draw the attention of the reader but also attract a sizeable share of the Onam ad pie.
Having done it all, officials at both papers insist that the advertiser response to their efforts has been good.
Shreekumar Menon, resident general manager, marketing, Malayala Manorama, Mumbai, says that the increase in ad revenues during Onam should be double the monthly average.
The group's annualized billings are Rs 200-crore, which means that the monthly average is about Rs 16.67-crore and revenues during Onam should accrue to about Rs 33.33-crore.
Rival Mathrubhumi, on the other hand, is hopeful of achieving about Rs 20-22-crore in terms of advertising revenues from Onam, informs K P Narayanan, deputy general manager, Mathrubhumi.
This growth, he says, has been primarily driven by the white goods and automobile sectors. "Other categories such as jewellery, apparels and retail have also contributed," he adds.
Typically, the shopping season during Onam sets in by the first week of August, which builds up by August 15 - peaking in and around the festival day. Insertions in papers also go up proportionately to take advantage of the shopping mood among people.
Interestingly, Vishu, the Kerala New Year celebrated in April, Christmas and Eid are also occasions when Malayalees splurge in general, but spends are the most during Onam, says Menon. "It is the single largest festival in terms of spends," he adds.
Apart from Onam, both papers have also witnessed the launch of new editions last month including one in Delhi (Malayala Manorama) and the other in Palghat, Kerala (Mathrubhumi).
The Delhi edition will be the fourth metro edition for Malayala Manorama, while
Mathrubhumi brings its overall tally on par with its rival with the Palghat edition.
The Delhi edition of Malayala Manorama was launched on August 17, while the Palghat edition was launched a few days later on August 22.
© 2004 agencyfaqs!