NRS 2005 has seen the second burst of data release, which includes the Kerala market. With the inclusion of the Malayalam publications, the top ten has changed for both dailies and magazines, where in Malayala Manorama takes the number ten slot.
In magazines, Vanitha and Malayala Manorama take the ninth and tenth spots, respectively – the top publications in both continuing to be the same.
Malayala Manorama claims tenth slot in dailies
Looking at the numbers closely, as was seen in the earlier burst of data that didn’t include Malayalam publications, Bengali daily Anand Bazar Patrika claimed the tenth position at a readership of 7,210,000. This is now taken by Malayala Manorama, even the daily has seen a dip vis-à-vis the last NRS round – from a readership of 8,798,000 on the number five position, it is now at 7,985,000.
If one looks at only the urban market, the inclusion of Kerala has made no difference to the top line up.
With the decline in numbers, the round doesn’t appear to be an easy one for Malayala Manorama. However, Malayala Manorama Group’s GM, Marketing, Varghese Chandy, has a different opinion at this stage. According to him, “It is still too early to give a view on what we think of the data, as we need to see the data closely and analyse it threadbare. However, there has been a drastic change in the sampling and methodology of NRS 2005. They have included factors like district wise sampling, which was never there. In such a scene, you can’t compare it to the last round of data, as the basic fundamentals are different.”
Chandy further explained that since comparison with previous rounds would be incorrect, in case of NRS, there was a need to observe performance on a relative basis – comparing how the rest of the publications in the market had done and how market shares were retained or had gone up. “In our case, the market share has increased and so it is indeed good news for us,” he added.
He, however, didn’t refute that a decline in Kerala market, which had traditionally been the highest in readership and literacy rate, did raise questions. But it was too early to make any statements on this, “as I said, there is a lot of volatility in the data,” Chandy said.
The changes in top ten magazines
Looking at magazines now, Vanitha and Malayala Manorama take the ninth and tenth slots, respectively, for the urban plus rural markets. Both publications have again seen a dip in readership, wherein Vanitha comes to a 3,832,000 from the 5,514,000, and Malayala Manorama has moved from 5,406,000 to 2,947,000.
In the last round, these positions were claimed by Meri Saheli, on the ninth spot with a readership of 2,797,000 and Ananda Vikatan taking the tenth spot with a readership figure of 2,741,000.
Chandy’s view doesn’t differ much for magazines as well. Commenting on these, he said, “The case is the same. Media analysts and planners need to see the data in a relative context than absolute. In the case of Vanitha again, the market share has considerably gone up and that is more important.”
A point that Chandy brings in is that in this round of NRS 2005, NRSC officials had pointed that there was a correction of readers per copy as well. “With so many changes infused, looking at just the Average Issue Readership and drawing conclusions in not right.”
The CD now released would be the final NRS 2005 data CD, including the Malayalam publications, amongst other top line findings, and the withdrawal of data of 83 publications, which cross the cut-off margin of errors.