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Private FM stations in Chennai make hay as ‘Sivaji’ shines

15-June-2007
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Private FM stations in Chennai make hay as ‘Sivaji’ shines

With the ‘Sivaji’ mania reaching feverish pitch in Tamil Nadu with superstar Rajnikanth’s magnum opus ‘Sivaji: The Boss’ all set to hit the silver screens, private FM channels in Chennai are leaving no stone unturned to cash in on the hype surrounding the movie. While BIG FM and Radio Mirchi celebrated the biggest blockbuster of the year by conducting ‘Sivaji Look-Alike’ contest, Radio One and Hello FM, besides conducting SMS contests, are set to explore some innovative initiatives to increase the brand recall.

In the ‘Sivaji Look-Alike’ contest by Radio Mirchi, many enthusiastic fans attempted to imitate the superstar. The station has also been initiating a slew of activities from airing the exclusive trailer of the film to spicy interviews throughout the week with the actress of the film Shreya Reddy, comedian Vivek, and playback singers Udit Narayan and SP Balasubramanian. Radio Mirchi listeners also got a chance to win tickets for the film during the entire week via innovative on-air promotions.

Speaking about the two weeks of excitement on Radio Mirchi in the run-up to the release of the movie, Mahesh Shetty, VP and Cluster Head, Tamil Nadu, Radio Mirchi, said, “There is palpable excitement in the air, and we want to make it extra hot and for the listeners. Through innovative programming and promos, we are trying to make this film an unforgettable experience for the youth, especially for the Rajni fans by bringing them close to the movie and their superstar.”

Radio One ran an SMS contest and distributed 100 tickets of the film to its listeners. LV Navaneeth, Station Head, Radio One, said, “Whatever you do for a Rajni’s movie, I think everybody will talk about it. Running a contest next week does not make sense as it’s a big-ticket movie and everybody wants to watch the film first day first show.”

On the other hand, Charles, Head-Marketing, Hello FM, seems to have a completely different thought process. He said that no FM station would gain any sort of mileage by associating with the film. “We are only multiplying the effect that the movie already has, and this would not multiply one’s brand value,” he asserted. Then why is Hello FM is giving out the films tickets worth Rs 1 lakh to its listeners? Charles replied, “We are doing it because we wanted to entertain the listeners. We have been giving out tickets regularly, and hence we are giving tickets for this movie also.”

Charles added that the station has some innovative plans, which, he hopes, would bring some mileage for Hello FM. He said that Hello FM wanted to reach out to as many people as possible. One way of doing it was by giving away tickets. “We are also going to run our brand commercial in all the cinema halls where the film is being released,” he said, adding that anybody who came to the theatre wearing Hello FM T-shirt would be given a surprise gift.

“And if 25 to 30 people came to a movie hall with Hello FM T-shirts, all of them would be seated in the same row with Hello FM T-shirt, which would obviously drive mileage for my brand,” Charles said. Additionally, Hello FM has also erected a larger-than-life hoarding on one of the city theatres showing ‘Sivaji’ with the message ‘106.4 FM: The Boss of all FM’.

BIG FM has also done a lot of activity much before the release of the film and close to the releasing date. The ‘Sivaji Look-Alike Contest’ conducted by BIG FM has received overwhelming response. “We have done a whole lot of activity around Rajni. Currently, BIG FM is also getting the people who have worked with Rajni on air who would be sharing interesting anecdotes and incidents while working with the superstar,” said Zarine Menon, Station Manager, BIG FM, Chennai.

The station is also conducting a lot of on-air contest whereby it is giving away movie tickets of the first day first show to the listeners. “We will be also doing a lot of on-ground activity in order to connect with the fans of Rajnikanth, thus creating a lot of buzz around Sivaji,” Menon added. BIG FM is giving close to 300 tickets to the listeners through various contests.

With numerous on-air and off-air contest and activities, the FM stations stand to gain some mileage, whether the film gains popularity or not.

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