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Tata Sky partners Madhuri Dixit for interactive dance service

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MUMBAI: After launching the Actve Fitness service in association with Suniel Shetty, direct to home (DTH) service provider Tata Sky has now partnered with Madhuri Dixit Nene and Dr. Shriram Nene’s RnM Moving Picture to launch a new interactive service ‘Dance Studio.’

The service will be powered by Dance with Madhuri (DWM) and will enable Tata Sky's subscribers to learn various dance forms in the comfort of their homes.

Priced at Rs 59, this standalone service, which is not part of Tata Sky’s value added services (VAS) standard package, is expected to target viewers from all demography, across its 15 million customer base. Launching ad free on a subscription only basis, the service will be free for the first 10 days. 

“Dance is universal and after going through a customer feedback survey and researching on consumer insights, we realised that dance cuts across all our target audience - kids, parents, grandparents. For that matter dance as a sector had a huge demand and was under-catered from an ‘at home service’ perspective. So we decided to go ahead with it. The idea was to provide our customers with a service that helps them learn quick steps from the best of dance teachers from all genres in the industry and Dance With Madhuri was an obvious choice,” said Tata Sky chief commercial officer Pallavi Puri.

Off late, the DTH player has launched a slew of interactive VAS services. When asked if video on demand (VOD) and VAS can become a sustainable revenue generating service for the company, Puri says, “For Tata Sky, both VOD and VAS services are two areas that we will be focusing on. These are services, which are distinct to Tata Sky. Our consumers know us for providing them with these unique services, so we will continue to expand them.”

The launch will be complemented with an engaging digital campaign #DanceForHappiness that the DTH player released through their social networking arms earlier this week, thereby going digital first for their marketing and promotions. Tata Sky ran a contest on its Twitter page and the winners were felicitated during the service’s launch. The launch also saw the release of a series of TVCs focused on Dance Studio, featuring Madhuri Dixit.

Explaining the theme behind the campaign, Tata Sky chief marketing officer Malay Dixit says, “Our research revealed that the expression of happiness across the country is instinctively through dance. That was the start of conceptualising the Dance For Happiness campaign, which later incorporated different factors that shape our reasons to learn dancing in the first place. This was the brief that we gave to Prime Focus - our creative partner for this campaign’s marketing and promotions.”

The DTH operator’s home channel is the principal  point of communication and promotion for the new service.

Breaking down the different functions, the entire campaign is aimed to serve. “While the header for the campaign remains Dance For Happiness, we have broken it down into two sections. Since it’s a new product, some parts of the campaign will need to address what the product delivers and the other half will cater to its emotional relevance with consumers. So the campaign will be a mix of product explanation, price point address and the emotion behind dancing,” he explains. 

While he asserts that having a celebrity onboard a campaign does amplify the reach, the core of any product offering is the concept, which needs to be solid. That being said, Madhuri Dixit being the face of DWM, and the brand’s overall reach made it easier to propagate the message to Tata Sky’s consumers, Dixit adds.

This association makes a big brand integration on part of RnM Moving Pictures, run by the husband - wife duo. When asked what that means for the start up,  Dr Nene says, “Being a start up, the key was to figure out sustainability, and how we can make it palatable and affordable at the same time. This particular joint venture opportunity with Tata Sky takes DWM to 15 million households. Individuals can access world class dance lessons at just Rs 59. Therefore, one significant part of our scope is to go out and partner with different brands and services that fits well with what we want to achieve, and Tata Sky just fits the bill like a hand to a glove.”

He adds that Tata Sky also facilitates DWM to penetrate Tier II and III audience, a demographic which is harder to reach out for a digital start up like them. “The challenge has always been to reach out to the mass beyond the metros, and non uniform broadband coverage and internet availability has always hindered us in that respect. But with Tata Sky onboard, we can easily leap over this hurdle,” says an enthusiastic Nene.

Apart from their DTH partnership, RnM Moving Pictures is also looking to expand its services internationally, starting with the United States and gradually moving to Dubai and the UK.

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