Specials

2017 for infotainment and lifestyle channels

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MUMBAI: The infotainment and lifestyle genres can’t compete with GECs when it comes to ratings but that doesn’t dampen the spirits of channel heads. New shows are constantly launched to engage the tight community of viewers that channels in the category command.

According to Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC) data, the lifestyle genre managed to grab more attention than the infotainment genre in 2017. There was a 15 per cent growth in the year 2017 as compared to the previous year. Infotainment genre had garnered 17.6 million impressions in the year 2016, whereas in 2017 the ratings increased to 20.2 million impressions. In 2016, the lifestyle genre had 4.2 million impressions and in 2017 it had 5.2 million impressions. Lifestyle segment grew by 24 per cent, which is more than the infotainment segment’s 15 per cent growth.

Discovery managed to hold on to its strong position with an effective programming line-up. Sony, in partnership with BBC, launched Sony BBC Earth. The latest entrant in the market fared quite well whereas the other infotainment channels fought steadfastly, refusing to give an inch away.

In the lifestyle category, food is what got Indian audiences drooling with Living Foodz giving others a hard time in displacing it from the throne. 

Let’s delve into what infotainment and lifestyle channels did last year and see how they entertained audiences.

INFOTAINMEN

Discovery

Discovery Channel India had enough shows lined-up for the whole year. The channel premiered Christiano Ronaldo-- The world at his feet and Sleeping Giant-- An Indian football story, as well as Taking Fire- live from Afghanistan-a story of a band of brothers deployed to defend one of the US’ farthest fling outposts at the gateway to one of the deadliest places on earth: the mouth of the Taliban-held Korengal Valley in Northeast Afghanistan.

The channel aired a special short capsule feature series highlighting the work done under Namami Gange programme during Independence Day. A four-episode series Breaking Point: Commando School Belgaum gave viewers a glimpse of the thirty-five days gruelling course that the officers must undergo to be a part of India’s elite commando force. The series has been produced by Sparkle Works Films.

HistoryTV18

History TV18, a JV between TV18 and A+E Networks, came up with OMG! Yeh Mera India by Krushna Abhishek again-the third season showcasing another set of unique stories from across India such as an orphanage for animals like leopards, jackals, crocodile and porcupines, a barber who cuts and styles hair by igniting it with a gas lighter and a physically challenged ace-cyclist.

The network also launched Serial Killer Earth was a 10-part series that explored mother nature while Barbarians Rising was an epic saga of the fall of the Roman Empire. History TV18 also launched a weekly video series-- BossWomen to tell stories of Indian women, with an aim to collaborate, create and celebrate positive, inspirational, lesser-known, role model worthy women of India.

Sony BBC Earth

Launched in March 2017, Sony BBC Earth came up with many shows—Taj Mahal, Eiffel Tower, Big Ben, Sydney Harbour Bridge, Monumental Challenge etc. Also premiered were Spy in the Wild and three other shows—Extreme Mountain challenge, Extreme River challenge and-Deadly 60- Pole to Pole featuring Steve Backshall.

LIFESTYLE

Living Foodz

The channel partnered All Things Nice, a wine and spirits consultancy, for the fifth edition of celebrating India’s finest to recognise the winners of the Indian Wine Consumer’s Choice Awards 2017 in association with lifestyle partner Living Foodz.

Utsav-Thalis of India takes viewers on a journey across 18 cities and offers a peek into India’s rich culinary heritage. The show explores each region and unravels fascinating anecdotes about its people, the regional delicacies, local ingredients. 

Another show that grabbed eyeballs during the year for the channel was Femme Foodies. Conceptualised in-house by Living Foodz, the show is based on the unique concept of ‘gourmet on wheels’.  

FYI TV18

This year, FYI TV18 launched a wedding-based show My Big Bollywood Wedding, exploring behind the scenes settings of the traditional and modern in today’s ‘Bollywood’ wedding culture amongst Indian – Americans. Small Budget Big Makeover featured the stories of different families across India and each makeover unravelled the story behind the change.

TLC

The network owned by Discovery Communications, focussing on educational and learning content, premiered a bold new short-format series The Poetist,-- aiming to give a platform to leading female artists from across sections of society to use their art to express and stand up for what they believe in.

Travelxp

The network opened a window in 2017 for the viewers of Slovakia Czech Republic and Germany, through its fully localised launch on Slovak Telekom. Travelxp is already fully localised in Serbian and Croatian apart from the primary English feed.

Viewers weren’t short of new shows to pick from this year. Let the appetite keep growing in 2018 as well.

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