The increase in airtime rates will be applicable for new contracts. While some wonder if it isn't too much too soon other experts say it might just work.
As news channels in India continue to complain about low ad rates, ET Now, the English business news channel from the Times broadcasting stable, has decided to up its ad rates by as much as 100 per cent.
For ET Now, the increase in rates will be applicable for all new contracts with the channel. ET Now has decided to increase its ad rates at a time when a majority of its advertising contracts are awaiting renewal.
So, will the 100 per cent rate hike attract enough market support?
Ashish Bhasin, chairman, India and CEO, Aegis Media, says, "Ad-rates are like water; they find their own level. But for now, 100 per cent seems a little deep. Brands are tight on their budgets.. The market is not all that buoyant. However, marketers are ready to spend if there is value for their money."
Avinash Kaul, CEO, ET Now, Zoom and Times Now, believes that the time is ripe for ET Now to witness a 100 per cent hike in its ad rates. "It comes right ahead of the budget.. The awareness campaign about the move is already in place and we expect the volumes to return within a quarter after the revised rates are implemented," he says.
Meanwhile, since CNBC-TV18 and ET Now are the two clear market leaders in the genre, there are a few who think that the move will work just fine. They note that both the banking and financial sectors, major drivers of the genre, are growing steadily.
Marking on the relevant TG for the genre (C&S SEC AB, 25+), the channel has garnered 50 per cent relative share in the current week (January, 6 to January, 12), while its closest competitor, which has been the topper for a long time, CNBC-TV18 clocked 42 per cent share in the same period. Also, the other two channels, NDTV Profit and Bloomberg TV, have registered 8 per cent and 0 per cent channel shares, respectively. The overall genre share for the English business news genre is 0.12 per cent.
Comparing ET Now's latest move to its sister channel Movies Now, Suresh Balakrishnan, CEO of the media agency BPN, says, "This is similar to Movies Now upping its rates by 100 per cent when it started getting the numbers. And while its revenues did not double, they certainly increased."