Sahara One aims 'Kituu...' at prime time

MUMBAI: November sure seems to be a month for new launches. Hardly has the dust settled on the announcement of new shows from the Sony and Zee stables, comes the news that Sahara One is launching a programme on 14 November in the 9:30 pm slot.

Kituu Sabb Jaantii Hai, based on the life of a young middle class girl who goes on to become a face to reckon with in the broadcast media, is being pitched against Star One's new show India Calling. Both shows launch on the same day in the same time slot.

With the arrival of Kituu the prime time line up on Sahara One has seen a slight reshuffle. Dial One Aur Jeeto, which used to air from 8 - 9 pm, will go back to its original half hourly format from 14 November and will be aired from 8 - 8.30 pm. The repeat telecast of Hare Kkaanch Ki Choodiyan, which used to air at 9.30 pm, will shift into the 8.30 pm slot. The channel's flagship show Woh Rehne Waali Mehlon Ki stays put in the 9 pm slot and Kituu comes in at 9.30 pm.

Apart from India Calling, Kituu has also been pitted against Kavyanjali on Star Plus, Jassi Jaissi Koi Nahin on Sony (until it moves into the 10 pm slot later this month to give way to the new show Ek Ladki Anjaani Si at 9.30 pm) and Saat Phere on Zee. Says Sahara One Television COO Purnendu Bose, "We are not going to get bothered by what competition is doing or is going to do. We know what we are doing."

The marketing and interactive activities around Kituu, which has been produced by Siddhanth Cinevision, starts tomorrow (10 November) with a unique campaign called Kituu Dikhi Kya. The channel is inviting people to call in or SMS them the number of times they have spotted Kituu - be it on outdoor hoardings, television or print campaigns. "The person who sends in the most number of correct responses gets to win a prize," said Bose. The channel has tied up with Radio Mirchi to promote the contest and listeners can call in to tell the RJ where they have seen Kituu.

People can also send in an SMS to the Sahara One short code 9090 with their responses. "We came up with this idea of letting people tell us where they have seen Kituu because by doing that we can also gauge how many people are actually aware of our campaign and new show. The idea is to let people do the talking," said Bose.

Apart from this, the protagonist of the show (in her role as a journalist) will have a say in everything that is going on in and around the country. Kituu will make appearances on Sahara One and also on radio and give her views on any current topic of conversation. "We are looking at making Kituu a brand name, which every household in the country will relate to," said Bose.

Besides this, the outdoor, print, television, internet and radio promotions will also run simultaneously.


Some of the other shows that are in the pipeline on Sahara One are a makeover non-fiction show called Doli Sajaa Ke Rakhna, which Bose informs is still in the conceptualisation stage. Apart from that, the weekend version of Dial One Aur Jeeto, which is tentatively titled Dial One Aur Khelo, is also likely to be rolled out in the near future. The weekend version will essentially be a package of the best episodes of Dial One Aur Jeeto.


Having a line up of blockbuster Hindi movies, Sahara One has decided to build the 12 noon band on Sundays. The channel will premiere movies in this time slot. It will kick off with Pyaar Mein Twist starring Dimple Kapadia and Rishi Kapoor on 13 November instead of slotting it in the primetime band. After Pyaar Mein Twist, the channel has lined up Jimmy Shergil starrer Yahaan, which will be premiered towards the end of the month.

Explaining the logic behind this, Bose said, "According to a research conducted by us, we found that there was a huge television viewership on Sunday afternoons. And going by that, we decided to experiment with our premiers by slotting them on Sundays." The Amitabh Bachchan starrer - Sarkar will also premier on a Sunday in December at 12 noon.

It is interesting to note here that Star Gold premiered Swades in a similar fashion on Sunday at 1 pm in September. What remains to be seen here is whether Sahara One can garner eyeballs with this new strategy for movie premiers.


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