afaqs! news bureau

Will advertisers continue to back TV news as digital publishers grow in size?

At the first edition of The Future of News Conference & Awards, curated by afaqs!, the panellists discussed advertisers and media planners' perspective on TV news.

As digitalisation continues to penetrate our lives, the way we consume content or news has also changed significantly. Gone are the days when we relied on television for entertainment. Many people now prefer getting news from online platforms.

So, will there be a change in how advertisers interact with TV news? This was the question that Sreekant Khandekar, co-founder and CEO, afaqs!, asked our panellists during the first edition of The Future of News Conference & Awards, curated by afaqs!.

The panellists were:

Anita Nayyar, COO - media, branding and communication, Patanjali Ayurved

Mansi Datta, chief client officer and head - North and East, Wavemaker India

Samir Sethi, VP, and head of brand and marketing,

Nayyar pointed out that the real motivation for any advertiser to get on any channel is to get an audience. Talking about TV news, as a medium for advertisers, quite a bit has changed over the years, she added.  

"Advertisers go to any channel because of their audience. Brands used news channels, especially English ones, because it provided a sense of 'premiumness'. You were certain that premium audiences were watching these channels and, hence, it was the best way to connect with them." 

While a brand can also build its reach by advertising on general entertainment channels (GECs), news channels provide better frequency.

Wavemaker India’s Datta mentioned that as audiences evolve, news channels will see a different kind of audience that interacts with them. For English channels, the target audience is different, which is also the case for Hindi channels. Hence, they can be used to target a different set of audience, who has an affinity to news channels of their preference.

As per Sethi of, news channels have given, and will continue to give, brands an opportunity to reach out to male audiences.

Will advertisers continue to back TV news as digital publishers grow in size?

"From a qualitative point of view, the user base of news wants to be aware. They want to stay up-to-date. These people could be the primary decision-makers in a family. Hence, especially for players in the BFSI sector, news has been an important medium to reach out to audiences."

He also pointed out that the difference between TV and digital news is that with the former, you can't really custom target your audience and reach out to a particular set. On digital, you have that ability, making TV news slightly more agnostic.

"Studies suggest that if you pair linear TV with digital, then your reach will be exponentially higher, as compared to investing in either of the channels," Nayyar highlighted.

Sethi added that news channels need to have specialised and dedicated teams to publish content on different platforms to serve different viewers.

Datta pointed to an interesting phenomenon at the intersection of TV and digital space. "Connected TV (CTV) is becoming more relevant. There is strong evidence that many households are migrating from DTH to CTVs at the moment. The consumption of news, particularly for the upper strata, is now via CTVs."

You can watch the panel discussion below:

News18 presents The Future of News Conference is powered by Public App. The platinum sponsor is ABP Live, knowledge partner is Nielsen, and live streaming partner is 24 Frames Digital.

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