DTH to splurge Rs 6 bn on ads in FY'11

MUMBAI/ BANGALORE: The plot hasn‘t changed much for the direct-to-home (DTH) operators in 2010. A gang of six private players are fighting over subscriber growth and attempting to expand the digital universe in a country where the television landscape is mostly analogue cable.

The warfare is spreading over to the advertising world as each DTH player wants to play the volume game amid low ARPUs (average revenue per user). The usage of celebrities, whether it is Shah Rukh Khan or Aamir Khan or Hrithik Roshan or the Kareena Kapoor-Saif Ali Khan duo, in television commercials is to entice subscribers to take the DTH route. 
The DTH operators are going to splurge Rs 6 billion towards marketing across TV, print and other mediums this fiscal as they aim to add 11 million subscribers due to a spate of sporting events. In terms of ad spend, Tata Sky would be leading the pack with Airtel Digital TV and Dish TV in near-distance company.

"Tata Sky‘s ad spend will be around Rs 1.2 billion, followed by Airtel Digital TV. Dish TV will have a marketing expense of Rs 1 billion while Reliance Big TV will spend over Rs 800 million," says an industry-tracker.

Videocon is preparing for a bigger ad exposure for its d2h brand in the second half of the year. "We were present in the IPL and are lining up a bigger ad splash in the coming months. Our ad spend for promoting our DTH service will be Rs 800 million this fiscal," says Videocon Group director Saurabh Dhoot.

DTH operators were equally aggressive in the previous fiscal as they had to intensely compete among themselves and cable TV networks to acquire customers. "There would be a marginal 5 per cent increase in ad spend this fiscal. This is because there was high ad spending in the last fiscal," says a senior official of a leading DTH company.

DTH companies are the top ad spenders on television in the ‘services category‘ with a combined 32 per cent share, according to Tam AdEx data for the first half of the calendar year based on volumes.

The ad volume spend by the DTH sector in the first half of 2010 is up 10 per cent over the year-ago period. In the six-month period to June-end 2009, the DTH segment had a 29 per cent share in the overall ‘services‘ category.

Tam AdEx data shows that ‘properties/real estates‘ had a 15 per cent share in the ‘services‘ category, while ‘Internet service-general‘ follows at third place with an 11 per cent share.

Sun Direct has edged out Tata Sky to become the leading advertiser among the DTH brands with an eight per cent share in ad volumes, according to Tam AdEx data for the first half of 2010. While Tata Sky stands second in the list with a six per cent share (same as previous year), Dish TV, Airtel Digital TV and Reliance Big TV follow with shares of five, four and three per cent of the overall service sector ad volumes on TV.

"The ad volume growth on TV will not reflect Sun Direct‘s position as the lead ad spender. Sun uses its own channels and a sizeable part of its advertising is in the south. Tata Sky will continue to lead in ad spends," says a media analyst.

The rise in ad volumes is driven by three factors - entry of a sixth player (Videocon d2h), increase in the number of new product launches, and a busy sporting events year.
Says Bharti Airtel CMO - DTH Sugato Banerji, "With the IPL and the Fifa World Cup standing back-to-back, the sector eagerly spent on TV for advertising their brands. Now with the festive season and the Commonwealth games coming up, buying commercials on TV from this category is only going to increase."

Dish TV will be increasing its ad spend in the southern states as it hopes to improve its subscriber base in the region. Says Dish TV chief operating officer Salil Kapoor, "We plan to reallocate funds towards south with a larger share of media spends to attract more subscribers from this region."

Bharti Airtel, also looking at attracting more subscribers from the region, has just launched a south-specific "lifetime free language pack" campaign across the Tamil, Telugu and Malayalam channels.

"In the Southern market, language polarity is very high and since we have a weaker marker share in this region, we aim to expand our brand awareness through this campaign," says Banerji.

Big TV will concentrate on BTL and town-wise promotions while continuing to heavily use TV and print. Says Big TV CEO Sanjay Behl, "DTH is still an underdeveloped and low penetration category. We need to raise our ad voice."

Latest Reads
Pune Times joins hands with the Pune Police to launch the 'City Safe' app, as part of #MakeMyCitySafe initiative

Pune Times, city supplement of leading media house, The Times of India, has joined hands with Pune Police to support an initiative for women’s safety in the city. Pune Times has launched its campaign #MakeMyCitySafe as a big shout out to the youth of Pune to come together to make the city safer...

Technology Software Applications
HAL Robotics ropes in Navanit Samaiyar as board member and advisor

MUMBAI: HAL Robotics has roped in Navanit Samaiyar as its board member and advisor. Samaiyar has a record of setting up, scaling and transforming businesses across a very wide cross section of industries spanning from IT/ ITeS to steel, telecom, engineering goods, earthmoving machinery, logistics...

Technology Hardware Components
Republic TV launches Android app

MUMBAI: Republic TV is on a roll. From rocking the ratings chart in launch week itself to going international, the channel has added one more accomplishment to its kitty. The Republic TV Android app is now live.

Technology Software Applications
STB cos in India, China enhancing features, providing customised solutions, Technavio enlists top vendors

MUMBAI: The global STB market is characterised by intense competition as the market is saturated in developed countries. The market share of these players is declining because of the entry of new players. The STB companies are enhancing the features of STBs and providing customised solutions to...

Technology Hardware Set-top Boxes
India's PFT Clear Media ERP suite to help US' PBS content delivery

MUMBAI: Prime Focus Technologies (PFT), the technology arm of Prime Focus, announced that its CLEAR™ Media ERP Suite has been selected by Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) to enhance their Network Operations Center (NOC) ecosystem efficiencies and sustainability, with the objective of reducing...

Technology Software Applications
Broadcasters, OTTs to gain as Via adds xHE-AAC at special rate

MUMBAI: Via Licensing Corporation, a intellectual property solutions provider, has announced the upcoming availability of Extended High Efficiency AAC (xHE-AAC) as part of the Advanced Audio Coding (AAC) patent pool. The expanded patent pool licence will be available at no additional cost to...

Technology Software Applications
Tata Comm to deliver Motorsport videos on global devices

MUMBAI: Tata Communications will now deliver video content for viewers' all devices over its global network. The two have partnered to power the growth of the network’s internet television platforms.

Technology Software Applications
How to create live video content sans pros, convert radio broadcast into visual show

MUMBAI: ChyronHego will be showcasing its live production, automation solutions at Broadcast India show in Mumbai in mid-October.

Technology Software Applications
Sony renews IP licence deal with TiVo

MUMBAI: TiVo Corporation, a leader in entertainment technology and audience insights, has announced that Sony Corporation, a leader in consumer electronics, has renewed its multi-year intellectual property (IP) licence agreement. The license to TiVo’s patent portfolios covers all of Sony’s...

Technology Software Applications

Latest News

Load More

Sign up for our Newsletter

subscribe for latest stories