Print sector has been expanding its reach to regional cities rapidly. We have seen print giants such as Times of India, Hindustan Times, The Hindu, Ananda Bazaar Patrika, Dainik Bhaskar and others taking their business to smaller cities to capitalise on the growing scale in of English and regional daily readership.
All the leading players are following the mantra of ‘Regional is the new national’. Organisations and media houses have foreseen the huge potential in Tier II and III markets.
The latest entrant in the regional markets of Uttar Pradesh is one of the largest media conglomerates in India, The Times Of India. The Group has launched four new editions in Western Uttar Pradesh. The four editions will be published from Meerut, Bareli, Agra, & Dehradun.
The print space in UP will heat up as the media giant launched editions in these cities. Analysing these cities from an English newspaper perspective, three media players are present there, The Pioneer, Hindustan Times, and now TOI. TOI may have an upper hand with special editions as no other competitor publishes them from these cities.
Sharing the objective behind launching in these cities, Rahul Kansal, Executive President, Brand Function, BCCL said, “We have launched four separate editions of The Times of India in Western UP. We are looking at the launch as part of our greater NCR approach. Earlier, these places were being served by our Delhi edition, with circulation of more than 80,000-90,000 copies.”
When asked about the potential in these markets, Kansal replied, “These markets are witnessing unimaginable amount of progress and development in different sectors. Hence, they offer good scope for the print media market.”
Hindustan Times is present in Lucknow, The Pioneer is present in Agra and The Tribune is present in Dehradun.
TOI has been on a launching spree from last few years. We have seen TOI launch editions in Aurangabad, Kozhikode, Kolhapur, & West Bengal.
Uttar Pradesh is known as a Hindi Heartland but the taste of the readers is developing gradually towards English newspapers.
With more seasonal advertising lined up in the later half of this year, other players may also launch their special editions and target more and more local readers and advertisers.