The Indian newspaper market has been drawing attention for both its growth and innovations. Day 3 at the 61st World Newspaper Congress, being held in Göteborg, Sweden, saw a special presentation made by I Venkat, Board Director, Eenadu. The growth and strategies adopted by the Telugu daily came under close scrutiny at the Congress.
Venkat’s opening lines that long before the online world had discovered the benefits of personalisation, Eenadu “wove customisation into the very fabric of its offering”, grabbed the attention of the delegates present.
He took the audience through Eenadu’s growth from a fledgling print company into a media conglomerate with interests in print, television, Internet and other media.
Venkat added that Eenadu had circulation of 3.2 million copies daily spanning 23 main editions and 31 district editions. The newspaper is sold through 9,200 agents – 7,600 of who sell more than 100 copies each.
Describing the strategy behind the intense localisation in Eenadu, Venkat said that when the daily was launched in the 1970s, Indian newspapers only provided national and international news – never local.
“Eenadu set out to fill the vacuum. Subscribers get national, state and local news in different editions, depending on the district and locality,” Venkat pointed out.
He further said that after attracting an audience that didn’t read newspapers before, it now also had to attract the advertiser’s interests in reaching them. The paper had to create opportunities for unconventional advertisers – companies that had never advertised before – and it did this through the idea of ‘concept selling’, Venkat added.
To entice non-advertisers, Eenadu created model advertisements, where the message and details of the retailer or the politician were added to standardise ad designs. “We brought the creative to them,” Venkat said.
The daily also created specific event advertisements – opportunities to send messages on special days, such as Mother’s Day, Valentines Day, etc.
Venkat’s presentation gave newspaper executives from around the globe an opportunity to understand the Indian phenomenon.