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Dish TV sharpens focus on Tamil Nadu

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MUMBAI: Despite having substantial share across all markets in South India, direct-to-home (DTH) operator Dish TV is currently focusing on Tamil Nadu as the market there affords a big pay TV opportunity. Moreover, the state is also going through digitisation, which has created more avenues for DTH players to increase their subscriber base in the state.

Recently, Dish TV announced a plan to come up around 30 popular Tamil channels on its platform with an aim to leave customers with wider choice. In an interaction with Indiantelevision.com, Dish TV India SVP marketing Sukhpreet Singh said that Tamil Nadu has always been important for the company and is one of the top markets for the company.

“We are a major player in every market, including the South Indian market. We have a substantial share in Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, too. But we are focusing more on the Tamil market because there is more content available. At this point of time, we are focusing on the Tamil market as it is going through digitisation,” he said when asked about the company’s plan to focus on other South Indian markets.

However, he said that being a pan-India brand, it is not fair to focus on one market over another. The company keeps figuring out what customers want in a particular state, if there’s need of more content, subscription packages or services. Currently, they are doing this for Tamil Nadu.

Being a multi-dimensional market, Tamil Nadu has several segments of audience. One of the segment watches Tamil channels only while another one watches other South Indian language channels along with Tamil channels. Then, there are other two segments that demand Hindi and English content. The company tries to reach each of the four segments with subscription packs applicable for a particular segment.

“We continuously keep coming up with subscription packages; recently, we launched an annual subscription package for Tamil Nadu,” Singh said. The primary means of attracting more users to the platform is providing more content. Along with that, content has to be packaged and priced correctly.

Through promotional programmes and advertisements, Dish TV wants to keep its customers aware of all the plans. For building up the subscriber base, it is expanding distribution as well.

“We do unique things. For example, Dish TV is the only brand that provides the option of topping of your pack with single channels also,” he said. “If a customer who basically watches Tamil content and want some English channels, they don’t have to opt for the mega pack. They can pick channels at Rs 8.5 under ‘Mera Apna Pack’ initiative. This initiative has attracted a lot of customers.”

To increase market share, the long-term strategy is always based on better customer experience. Brand loyalty has a direct bearing on market share.

“The number of people subscribing to our VAS (value-added services) has increased dramatically,” he added when asked about how VAS was helping Dish TV’s business.

During the various digitisation phases, Dish TV acquired a number of customers in the state. Now, as the market has matured, like all the brands, Dish TV is also experimenting with new strategies.

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