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Red FM appeals for a better Kolkata via new campaign

Red FM appeals for a better Kolkata via new campaign

Author | Shubhangi Mehta | Thursday, Sep 01,2011 8:54 AM

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Red FM appeals for a better Kolkata via new campaign

Red FM has launched a new campaign, called ‘Didi Aami Kichu Bolte Chai (Didi, I want to say something)’, which serves as a platform for the people of Kolkata to voice their concerns for a ‘newer, vibrant and better’ city of joy.

The Red FM campaign highlights some pressing issues in the city such as garbage dumps or stray dogs, taking over the roads. This campaign is supported by outdoor, print, online, on-air innovations, social media and various on-ground promotions at direct consumer touch points merging interactivity with the listeners. The duration of the campaign is about four weeks and will be culminating by end of September.

Besides radio, they are extending the campaign on ground and on social media. They have used hoardings and ambient media to popularize the campaign in Kolkata. Red FM is also engaging in on-ground activation at malls and multiplexes to reach out to the citizens. A Red FM branded canter will also be doing the rounds of the city of Kolkata to enable listeners to contribute their views and record their message for the Chief Minister.

They are also using their official Facebook, Twitter, YouTube pages to popularize the campaign amongst the youth of Kolkata. Citizens can tune in to Red FM 93.5 Kolkata to express themselves and address their concerns. Alternately they can relay their messages through Red FM branded sprints that will be running across the city. Red FM booths are also being put up in malls to encourage the citizens to come forward and express themselves.

A few listeners will be selected and invited to Red FM studios and will stand a chance to interact with their favourite RJs. Red FM Kolkata is also using social media such as Facebook and Twitter to provide citizens with multiple platforms to have their voices heard.

Commenting on this initiative, Nisha Narayanan, Senior VP-Projects and Programming, Red FM 93.5 Network, said, “West Bengal, or Poschim Bonga as it is now called, witnessed a regime change after nearly 30 years and the new government came in riding on a wave of expectations from the citizens. The winds of change are sweeping across the state and there is a palpable desire for change amongst citizens. Kolkata is one of the oldest and most cultured cities in the country. This campaign in a way is an attempt to bring its former glory back by empowering the listeners.”

She further said, “‘Didi Aami Kichu Bolti Chai’ campaign is not a complaint box. It is about listeners and authorities coming together on the same platform to have a dialogue and in the process spread awareness on some of the issues that hold the city back. Last week, we got listeners in Kolkata to vote for the area they thought was the filthiest and needed a clean-up desperately. We got flooded with SMSes and phone calls from listeners across the city. When Maniktala Bazaar was voted as the dirtiest area in the city, our Red FM crew and listeners went to the area on Saturday to try and clean it up. This week we are tackling the problem of street dogs for which we have tied up with an NGO Mother’s Heart. We have a helpline where citizens can call in to report instances where dogs are in distress, etc.”

In the coming three weeks, listeners can expect many more issues to be addressed in an entertaining manner. According to Narayanan, the reason for radio taking up social causes was that the medium had invested in issues of public interest on an everyday basis and not just something that one reverts to during campaigns. “Commercial radio may have different business objective than AIR, but that doesn’t mean we do not address issues of public interest. Listeners tune in to radio not just for entertainment or music, but also for relevant information – be it traffic snarls or movie reviews. Radio thrives on immediacy, and for this reason it connects beautifully with the listeners. It is a mass medium which is deeply rooted in the local culture and everyday life of listeners. Not just this campaign in Kolkata, but in Mumbai, for instance, we have actively taken up the problem of potholes in the city. We followed up with corporators of various areas in Mumbai to hold them accountable to the people of Mumbai. In Delhi, on the other hand, we launched a week-long campaign to tackle the malaria menace in the city and spread awareness about the disease amongst our listeners,” she concluded.

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