Star TV has hiked ad rates on its premium channel, Star Plus, by a phenomenal 60 per cent for fiscal July 2001-June 2002.The average spot rate for prime time programmes (7-11 pm) has gone up from 5 lakhs / 30 seconds to Rs 8 lakhs / 30 seconds. STAR is offering special rates of Rs 9,60,000/30 seconds to those opting for the entire network (all seven channels).
Media planners, after analysing the new rate card, are of the opinion that the rate hike in sweepstakes is not so much as other Star Plus programmes in the 7-9 slot. While spots on bestsellers are good for reaching the target audience, programmes in the 7-9 slot are good for the frequency.
If a media planner were to single out Star Movies to reach a particular target audience at prime time, he will have to dish out Rs 71,000 / 30 seconds compared to the Rs 45,000/30 seconds he was paying earlier.
For Channel V, the advertisers have to pay Rs 16,000/30 seconds instead of Rs 9,000. The rate hike is in the same region for other star channels. Media planners are of the opinion that the new rate card is not sustainable and media buyers will negotiate their own special deals with Star.
The officials at STAR think that the hike is reasonable. Star airs 36 of the top 50 programmes and has witnessed 300 per cent jump in the eyeball count over last year. STAR would have been perfectly justified to raise rates beyond the 100 per cent mark.