Muthoot Group’s FM venture, Chennai Live, recently turned two. The talk radio, which plays only English music, is targeted at the 25-plus age group. To mark the occasion, the Chennai-based Fm station has launched a radio reality show – ‘Band Hunt’.
Speaking to exchange4media on the two-year journey of the Muthoot Group’s first media venture, Prem Kumar, Station Head, Chennai Live, said, “The response from the audience has been fabulous. Many stations in Chennai, and in the country for that matter, tried being an English genre station, but most of them went back to the mass audience format purely because of numbers. We stuck to our stand and are reaping the benefits now.”
Chennai Live stands out among the eight players in Chennai as the only station that plays English music round the clock. According to Kumar, the content made all the difference. “It’s not because of the English tracks that we are successful. It’s primarily because of the fact that right from day one we have taken a lot of efforts to focus on content. Right from day one, we did not position Chennai Live as a music station. We have positioned it as a station that gives a lot of content in the form of infotainment,” he elaborated.
According to Kumar, unlike other stations, Chennai Live had appointment listening – a lot of people listen to Chennai Live by choice. Unlike other FM stations, where if a listener did not like the song he or she switched over to other channels, on Chennai Live, because of the sheer content, listeners remained glued, he said.
“In that sense, we are actually competing with the local English dailies,” Kumar said, adding, “All the advertisers who are advertising on the English newspapers are also our target customers.”
Kumar further said, Chennai Live was looking for a growth rate of 500 per cent. “Since half the year is over, we are almost on target. And in the next 2-3 years, we hope to grow on that base by at least about 35-40 per cent, much more than the industrial growth,” he affirmed.
Meanwhile, on the occasion of completing two successful years, the station has also launched a radio reality show called ‘Band Hunt’. Of the 50 bands that had applied, the station has shortlisted 15. “All this has been canned into episodes just like television and are being played on air. From these 15 bands, it will come down to five bands and the final will take place on October 23, 2010, in Chennai, where the chosen five bands will entertain a group of audience,” Kumar said, adding that the idea was to discover local talent and promote them further.
“Once we have discovered the five bands, we also planning to cut albums, besides promoting their music on air,” Kumar concluded.