Television

How engagement works in the kids' space

How engagement works in the kids' space

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MUMBAI: Kids make our world go around! Quite literally, for channels focused on children as audience, observing their growing influence on choices, preferences and consumption habits of families in India, is a revelation! In this season of holidays when families gather around a TV set, it’s the children who call the shots.

In 2018, we have witnessed an upward spurt in viewership in the kid’s category, with numbers rising by 10 per cent (from average GRP 499 to 550 GRP)*. The newer entrants in a competitive space of children’ TV programming has actually helped in growing the audience which indicates that more children are opting to watch new programming. Keeping this insight in mind, Sony YAY! is committed to adapting and developing kids’ programming suited to their preferences and such trends help further validate our approach. The consumption patterns that have significantly grown this year further ensures our focus on homegrown toon characters. 

The 2018 emerging trends clearly reflect that flagship shows and localising content in regional languages pay dividends. Kids’ entertainment channels prosper on the dominance of marquee/flagship shows. 70 per cent of airtime and 80 per cent of GRP for leading channels in India comes from one leading show. Thus reiterating the fact that building a long-term relationship with toon characters, around whom shows, merchandise, and digital engagement are built, being the most effective manner to engage with kiddie audiences.

While kids treat their favourite characters as their best friends, they prefer watching them on multiple platforms – digital platforms help us fulfil every kid's demand, where we focus on curating content especially for our YouTube channel. Kids are engaged on all the digital platforms through games, shows, contests on social media, etc. thus creating a strong affinity towards their favourite toons. Building upon toon characters and developing them as digital properties have had our audience respond enthusiastically. Using social media also helps in strengthening this relationship. Kids have the world at their feet; we’ve got to keep them engrossed by offering them the best of everything.

We always sensed that regional language programming for children has potential and outreach. Hence, Sony YAY! produced content in Hindi, Bengali, Tamil, Telugu and Malayalam languages, of which we are leading in Kerala and West Bengal since we have the first mover advantage in these two markets. We have adapted to regionalisation effectively and swiftly. 

Another trend is telefilms and programming with longer duration, keeps kids engaged for a longer time. We’ve produced over 12 films this year at Sony YAY! with each film was well received by the kids. It’s a space that’s waiting to explode and is evolving quickly. 

The author is business head Sony Pictures Network India, Kids Genre (Sony YAY!). The views expressed here are  her own and Indiantelevision.com may not subscribe to them.

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