Organise the distribution, content will follow

MUMBAI: Content is King and distribution is God. A cliché to some but that was what came out as the main concern of broadcasters in the session "Redefining Television Content: Shifting Patterns."

Tam media CEO LV Krishnan threw open the session with a question, "How many hours of fresh content were telecast on TV in 2007?" The answer: Somewhere between 30,000 to 35,000.

According to Krishnan, the genres that saw tremendous growth were Kids, Hindi news channels, Hindi GEC and music channel. Content has seen a vast change, and was the engine that drove the industry both in terms of revenues and costs.

"Viewers have become very experimentative in nature and this sudden surge in the audience movement has led to new channel launches. The space is getting fragmented and average time spend by the viewers has gone down as well," said Krishnan.

Speaking about his recently launched Hindi GEC 9X, INX Group chairman Peter Mukerjea said, "The core TG for 9X are married females, not the absolute 4+ age group provided by Tam. In the GEC front, we require a deeper segmentation of TG to reflect numbers. Finding demographic segments is the need of the hour."

Surprisingly, the new emerging trends in content were not discussed. The focus of the discussions was digitisation of content and better revenue streams across different platforms.

A major chunk of revenues goes into managing distribution and that leaves the broadcasters with less to exploit content for other platforms. Alva Brothers director Sunil Lulla said, "It is important to establish content but the most important thing is distribution. Viewers should be aware of your brand. Enough is offered for free in this country. Now if the viewers want the content to be delivered on their mobile or through internet, they will have to pay for it. A regulation is urgently required to get in radical change."

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