Rajat Sharma’s India TV has left its rivals behind in the TRP stakes to be the new No. 1. It has unseated Aaj Tak, for long the numero uno amongst Hindi news channels, for six weeks.
From Week 33 to Week 37, India TV has remained ahead of other channels. In Week 37 with a 17.2 per cent channel share in relative terms, the channel is marginally ahead of Aaj Tak, which has a 15.8 per cent channel share in the CS 15+ category in all Hindi speaking markets. Moreover, 12 news shows of India TV are among the top 20 news shows.
Janardhan Pandey, Associate VP, Mudra Max, commented, “Being No. 1 makes a lot of difference as you command a premium on advertising rates. In a populous country like India, there is a mass appeal for the channel. They are getting the audience, whether they like or dislike the channel is a different thing. Grabbing eyeballs and getting the audience to watch the channel is the biggest thing. In terms of content, there is no definite benchmarking that you can do and the quality of content is debatable. If you are getting numbers, it is good business when the audience is in a receptive mode.”
Ruby Bana, Chief Intelligence Officer, Havas Media, remarked, “For a media planner, No. 1 means large audiences. While No. 1 in GECs is great, I don’t feel this applies to other genres. Advertisers favouring news, for instance, are often looking for either male or quality audiences – informed audiences/ influencer audiences, high networth audiences, etc.”
She further said, “Now, if the No. 1 news channel does not deliver on these criterions, it will not be considered by planners for those reasons; one will clearly see advertisers chasing serious audiences missing on these channels. Only being the No. 1 makes no difference as far as news or other non-mass entertainment genres are concerned.”
On a different note, Jai Lala, Principal Partner, Mindshare, believed that numbers did make a difference. He opined, “It is important if it is gaining share and GRPs. The primary reason for this is that currently there is not much to choose between all the news channels and hence, distribution or placement would play a key role.”