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GEC ad volumes saw 33% rise in 2020: TAM AdEx

HUL headed the list of top advertisers in 2020, followed by Reckitt Benckiser India.

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MUMBAI: 2020 was a difficult year for the television broadcast space, courtesy Covid2019 pandemic. Every genre struggled hard to ensure saliency in terms of content generation and maintaining ad volumes. In the early days of the lockdown, GECs were hit the hardest because the production schedules were canned and there was no fresh content. They were forced to rerun the old episodes of popular shows and were unable to create fresh content until the Unlock phase started and that too under strict guidelines. The situation forced the advertisers to rethink their strategy. 

Television Audience Measurement (TAM) released an analysis on ad volumes and active brands on GECs in 2020.  Ad volumes on general entertainment channels (GECs) last year has grown by more than one fourth over that of 2016, according to the TAM AdEx-Mirroring Y 2020 for advertising in GEC genre. It witnessed 33 per cent rise in 2020 compared to base year 2016. After ad volumes on GECs troughed in the second quarter of 2020 due to the imposition of a nationwide lockdown, they witnessed resurgence during the third and fourth quarter on the back of a gradual Unlock. 

It also pointed that the month of October and November had the highest ad volume share (10 per cent each) due to the festive period. True Shield Hand Sanitizer was the top brand during the period of April, May, June and August in GEC genre. 

In 2020, top three channel genres retained their positions compared to 2019, among which the Hindi GEC genre topped during both the periods. The Hindi GEC witnessed a growth of one per cent since 2019. Tamil GEC has continued to take 15 per cent of the pie in both the years. Malayalam and Kannada GEC observed positive rank shift. Top five channels genres accounted for more than 65 per cent share of ad volumes during both the periods.

The report stated that the count of advertisers and brands dropped by 38 per cent in quarter two of 2020 which recovered by 48 per cent and 58 per cent respectively in quarter four over quarter two. Personal care/personal hygiene sector topped with 25 percent share of ad volumes followed by F&B with 22 per cent share.  Top sectors which included personal care/personal hygiene, F&B and services together added 57 per cent share of ad volumes which were also on top during 2019. The top four sectors also including hair care has dominated the GEC genre in year 2020.

While the toilet soaps category maintained leading position during 2020, with seven per cent share of ad volumes, ecom-media/entertainment/social media climbed by five spots to achieve the second rank, replacing toilet/floor cleaners. The report highlighted that the top ten categories belonged to food and beverages sector. Biscuits category was the only new entrant in the top ten, replacing hair oils. Positive rank shift was observed in milk beverages and ecom-media/entertainment/social media categories. In terms of growth, hand sanitisers category witnessed highest growth of 10X, followed by range of toiletries with six times growth.

Among the top advertisers of the year 2020, HUL topped the list followed by Reckitt Benckiser India. Top ten advertisers contributed 58 per cent share of GEC ad volumes. Marico was the only new entrant in the top ten advertisers’ list. P&G, ITC, Cadburys India, Wipro, Godrej Consumer Products, Colgate Palmolive India, Nestle India and Marico were in the list of top ten advertisers with a positive rank shift compared to the year 2019. Clinic Plus Shampoo was the top brand during 2020, followed by Lux Toilet Soap. The top ten brands together added 10 per cent share of ad volumes during 2020. Also, six out of the top ten brands were from HUL while three belonged to Reckitt Benckiser.

2020 was a difficult year for the television broadcast space, courtesy Covid2019 pandemic, but regional channels have managed to hold their market. According to the report, regional channels had 3X ad volumes compared to national channels. Regional and national channels had 77 per cent and 23 per cent share of ad volumes respectively during both the years (2019-20).  HUL and Reckitt Benckiser India were the top two advertisers present in both regional and national channels during 2020. In GEC genre, regional channels had three times more ad volumes compared to national channels. Apart from this, Docubay Media and Attica Gold Company were the top exclusive advertisers in national and regional GECs respectively.

One of the most affected genres on television in terms of ads during the Covid2019 lockdown was the GEC genre. The broadcasters were dependent on reruns of famous and old shows as shooting and production stopped due to restrictions. This led to a steep decline in adverts on GECs. From July onwards, when fresh content arrived, it propelled the advertising in the GEC genre, logging 330+ hours of average ad volumes per day. It saw a spike of  74 per cent more compared to lockdown period from April to June 2020. Tally of categories grew by 24 per cent whereas advertisers grew by 95 per cent and brands rose by more than 2X during Unlock.

The report further highlighted that prime time was the most preferred timeband on GEC genre, followed by afternoon and morning time-bands.  Prime time, afternoon and morning time bands together added 72 per cent share of ad volumes.

Ad commercials of 20-40 seconds were most preferred for advertising on GECs during both the years. Commercial advertising added 55 per cent share of ad volumes whereas promos had 45 per cent share in 2020.

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