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Star World, Hallmark running contests on FM radio

MUMBAI: Television channels are realising that FM Radio is an effective way to create and build up brand awareness about their programming. Star World and Hallmark are both running contests on FM Radio which gives the winner a trip overseas. This raises the bar a notch as to the manner in which channels use the radio. Previously the alliance had been restricted to promotional spots.

Star World has announced the Go Grammy contest. The contest which launched today is being done in conjunction with Go 92.5 FM from the Mid-Day group. Mid-Day advertises on the network and so the alliance is a mutually beneficial one. The channel regularly uses its sister company Radio City for contests and promotions.

The Star World contest will run over the next fortnight. Viewers have to tune in to the radio station in the morning 7-11 am during the Good Morning Mumbai programming band hosted by Anish Trivedi. A question will be asked relating to Star World programmes. One winner along with a friend will win a trip to Madison Square Gardens New York to watch the 45th Annual Grammy Awards on 23 February. The tagline for the promo is 'Its time to fly... again'. In India the channel will air the show live on 24 February early in the morning.

Hallmark, meanwhile, has commenced the Destination 11 pm contest in association with the Times Group's Radio Mirchi. The winner gets a trip to Switzerland. Travel arrangements will be done through Keshav Travels. Speaking on the initiative, Rohinton Maloo, whose Cutting Edge Media handles ad sales for the channel, said: "This is a watch'n'win contest. Radio Mirchi is being used to create awareness among car drivers to tune in. The question will be asked on the channel during the 11 pm block. Our aim is to promote non-film programming like courtroom dramas. We want familiarity with channel programming to increase with the viewer, who after participating in the contest, will stick with Hallmark."

The channel revised the timings and days of its shows from 1 January. Early Edition airs on Monday's and Tuesday's at 8:30 pm, Star Trek Voyager airs Monday-Friday at 9:30 pm, while The Guardian with Golden Globe nominee Simon Baker airs Thursday's at 8:30 pm. McLeods Daughters airs Wednesday's at 8:30 pm. Maloo also said that there were no sponsors for the contest. This was a marketing intiative for the channel and not a spot created for an advertiser. The TG is 18-30 years. Maloo also denied rumours that Hallmark would be joining the Sony bouquet. The channel will shortly unveil plans for Valentines day.

Not so new kid on the block sports channel Ten is also planning a number of its own but is keeping plans closely under wraps. A Ten Sports spokesperson said that the channel would shortly be making an anouncement regarding a tie up with an FM station for contests. Watch this space for further details.

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