Piqued MTV straightens the records with [V]

MUMBAI: They shot off a teaser and now they are out for the jugular. Piqued by Channel [V]'s claims of being the Numero Uno, MTV had darted off a detailed response.

Although there is no popping the bubbly here, a week later MTV is back with a befitting point by point riposte.

In an official release captioned 'Time to set the record straight', MTV claims to be the leading and dominating channel in the music channel scenario. Citing a reason for its retort, the channel says it wants to counter any possibility of market misinformation.

Taking a pot shot at [V]'s Popstars phenomenon, MTV says, their channel is not a four-week phenomenon. It has been a market leader for five years in a row.

Quoting TAM data, MTV says it has been ahead of all competition for the past 229 weeks (November 1998 to October 2003) among the 15-34 ABC audiences, in six metros. Viewership has grown 88 per cent in the past five years.

Refuting the number one position of the arch-rival, MTV has said that besides the selective six metro data, they have been a leader also in the rest of urban India, which constitutes a significant 58 per cent of the market.

The channel adds that it clearly leads in the music category even in the period selected by competition. Offering the latest TAM data, for week 43, MTV states that it has achieved 35 per cent of the music category share as compared to the number two channel which is at 26 per cent.

That apart, MTV claims to reach close to 6.4 million viewers - the ABC 15-34 audience group watch it every week - which is 36 per cent more than the number two channel (at 4.7 million).

MTV also has the highest number of loyal viewers across all music channels. As many as 36 per cent of MTV viewers have not watched [V], even for a minute, in the past five months (June-October 18), whereas 81 per cent of [V] viewers also watch MTV, explains the release, quoting the Tam research.

As far as the share of revenue goes, MTV enjoys a massive 50 per cent share of all advertising revenue among five national music channels. It continues to be the channel of choice for corporate India's big spenders, AirTel, HLL, Lycra, LG, Maruti, Hero Honda, Pepsi, Reliance Info, Motorola, Coke, Nokia, Samsung, Cadburys, Nestle and Hutch, the release states.

To bolster its claim further, MTV says that it's a complete 360-degree experience. Besides, it has won around 80 awards - Indian and international - over the past five years.

Adding spice to the entire issue is MTV's claim that "unlike our competitor, we are the preferred television channel for any advertiser that wants to influence the 15-34".

Firing their final salvo, MTV asserts there is a difference between a Bakra (MTV's) and a Paanga (Channel [V]'s). "Try one and you could end up with the other!" the release says. That's MTV ishtlye for you!

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