Hindi GEC Real from Real Global Broadcasting, the Alva-Turner 50:50 joint venture in India has also entered the ratings battlefield. TAM Media Research’s week 10 data is here, which also includes the launch week numbers for Real. The channel has opened with 9 GRPs. The numbers are lower than what was seen for channels such as 9X, NDTV Imagine and Colors at the time of their launch.
Commenting on the numbers, Sunil Lulla, CEO, Real Global Broadcasting, said, “I believe we have a distinctive product, and any product takes time to grow. These numbers, too, will grow. We cannot speak in much detail on the numbers, as you need at least 4-5 weeks of data to be able to analyse the content and the audience traction that it is getting.”
The media industry, however, is clear that these numbers are low, but that it would be too early to pass any comment on the channel as this is only the first week numbers. Prasanth Kumar, Managing Partner, CTG, GroupM, said, “These numbers are below expectations, but this is only the first week, so we have to still see how Real works on growing these numbers. They have shows like ‘Sarkaar ki Duniya’ that one would like to watch out for, and then they are still in the process of putting their distribution in place.”
Anamika Mehta, COO, Lodestar Universal, is of a similar view. She observed, “If you had to compare it with the other Hindi GECs, much has changed in the media environment today. NDTV Imagine and 9X had opened very well, but for Real, there is much more clutter in the GEC space. Also, the channel says that it has a distinctive proposition, but a lot of this disruption was already seen when Colors got non-fiction in the primetime. There is no extreme differentiation in the content of Real at present.”
However, both Mehta and Kumar believe that the hype that was generally seen around the launch of a Hindi GEC was missing in the case of Real. Kumar said, “As a viewer or a media observer, I did not feel any big push from the channel.” Mehta added to this, “Real has launched in a slow economic scenario, but that does not make any difference to the viewers. They need the same kind of reminder and re-reminders, especially since there are 10 other players trying to attract viewer attention.”
For Real though, the game has only just begun. Lulla said, “We are strengthening everything around the channel, including things like distribution, every day. I believe that going forward our reach and time spent would grow. All said and done, this is a business, and you have to make your business grow.”
It’s time to get Real from tonight