Regional might be the new national but when it comes to monetisation
of content the fastest growing segment in the Indian Media
& Entertainment (M&E) still lags behind the Hindi
India Head of Content Engine Gaurav Banerjee pointed out how
Marathi and Bengali channels continue to be under-leveraged
compared to the Hindi general entertainment channels (GECs),
despite having a bigger viewership pie in markets like Mumbai
claimed that regional GECs in Mumbai and Kolkata perform better
than Hindi GECs during the 8 pm prime time band. Therefore,
it is imperative that the ad rates of regional GECs in these
markets should reflect the viewership that they deliver vis-à-vis
Hindi GECs who continue to command higher rates.
viewership of regional channels is greater than Hindi GECs
in markets like Mumbai and Kolkata, particularly in prime-time
8 pm. But we are still not getting the right ad rates from
media agencies and advertisers, despite the ratings that we
deliver, Bannerjee said during a panel discussion on
regional markets at Ficci Frames.
he believed, was one of the reasons why regional channels
get a raw treatment from advertisers. The only way to correct
ad rates was by changing perception of advertisers that regional
delivers better than national channels in their home markets,
cost of producing content on regional channels has increased
over the years but the revenue side has not kept pace, We
need better ad rates to take our content to the next level,
an optimistic note, Bannerjee said that the regional market
is on the cusp of growth that will be second to none.
Telecommunications Sr Regional Manager Paulus Chau pointed
out how regional broadcasters can tap into the diaspora population
in other Asian markets like Hong Kong, Malaysia, and Singapore.
average revenue per user (Arpu) in these markets is also high
for regional broadcasters to start looking at them seriously,
he said, adding that the cost of transponders has softened
a bit for broadcasters to distribute their channels in these
can give focussed localised beams to regional channels to
reach out to more viewers, Chau said.
Group CEO and Editor-in-Chief Anil Wanvari, who was the moderator
for the session, said while regional is growing at a phenomenal
pace it needs to exploit other revenue streams like distribution
in digital platforms and international syndication.
channels should export their content to other markets by dubbing
or sub-titling it. With the quality of content that is produced
by regional channels, it would certainly appeal to a discerning
audience, Wanvari noted.
Sharma, the Executive Director of Shree Venkateish Films,
reminisced how regional films had to compete with Hindi films
to get them screened in theatres. But all that has changed
now with regional films also gaining in popularity due to
improvement in production values, packaging of films, and
said that the Bengali film market produces 150 films every
year with 10-12 becoming blockbusters. The average cost of
producing a Bengali film has also jumped from few lakhs to
Rs 50-60 million for a blockbuster.
Synergy CEO Indranil Chakraborty said the key to regionals
growth will be how it manages to retain talent which is veering
towards Hindi film and television market.
also said that a production is like solution provider which
has to give feasible rates to the broadcasters in addition
to providing quality content to the viewers.
also stated that the regional version of Kaun Banega Crorepati
(KBC) in Bengali, Bhojpuri or Tamil is a prototype of the
international format rather than being a carbon copy of the
the perspective of a news broadcaster, Tamil news channel
Puthiya Thalaimurais TV News Director S. Srinivasan
said the South Indian news market is besotted with news channels
with vested interests.
bemoaned the fact that most of these so-called news channels
are political mouthpieces of their political masters.
reason for Thalaimurai TVs success in a tough market
like Tamil Nadu is due to its non-partial coverage of politics
and focus on civic and social issues. Unlike other regional
channels who are obsessed with Entertainment and Cricket,
Thalaimurai TV has a right mix of content.