FOX Life is upping the ante in India in 2017 with back-to-back local productions in a span of few months. Earlier, this March, it came out with the well-received ‘Spirited Traveller’ featuring Indo-Kenyan chef Kiran Jethwa followed by the upcoming second season of ‘Great Escape: with Kunal and Cyrus’ with actors Kunal Kapoor and Cyrus Sahukar later this month.
Shruti Takulia, Creative Director, India Productions, FOX Networks Group India, shares, “We take great pride in our original productions, which hold true to our promise of curating journeys and real experiences. We are bringing not only new faces but also exciting content for the viewers.”
With new players mushrooming in broadcasting and more investment in local content by existing ones, the lifestyle space is up and moving. Takulia throws more light on the network’s differentiator. “I would like the quality of the work to speak for itself. The productions that we have come up in the last couple of years are being syndicated globally. Our local content is available on a global OTT platform; we are in talks with OTT apps in the US. We will come out with a bigger and better bouquet in Hotstar. Whenever we talk to content sales people they are often surprised and happy with our production and content quality. We are very happy with the benchmarks that we set as far as visually-stunning storytelling is concerned. We are happy to own that place.” Their content is dubbed across languages for a wider reach.
She adds, “FOX Life’s strongest point is its seamlessness. When you watch a show, you can’t differentiate if it’s a local or a global production. Our content strategy is talking in one voice and one philosophy to the viewers. Thatsets FOX Life apart from any other lifestyle channel who is giving you a twin bucket of global and Indian content.”
Takulia didn’t share the investment numbers on local production but shared that the network ‘manages to do so in competitive costs, keeping with the market trends but far outreaching the final results.’To bring local relevant content to the viewers is the most pressing matter currently.
Future line-up includes a show with award-winning Michelin-starred Indian chef Vikas Khannna, scheduled for early next year, where he will be seen interacting with other global icons. The channel is also including their viewers in their programming. Takulia offers, “We are coming out with an offering where our viewers get to share a platform with the most recognised names in the food industry in a couple of months. We are going to push the envelope as far as food shows are concerned by featuring global icons like Sarah Todd.”
Talking about the marketing strategy, Takulia talks about the role of content and positioning. “The marketing strategy is also worked upon keeping in mind the content and positioning and not necessarily dependent on whether it’s locally produced. Yes, we do get support locally when it’s a local production which becomes an added advantage.”
With respect to digital consumption, she observes that Indian viewers have become more matured in their choices of consuming infotainment and lifestyle channels and fine-tuned with relevant and topical content at the same time. Keeping that in mind, the network is taking efforts to be omnipresent. Thecreative director adds, “The intake of content on digital platforms has gone up drastically. So,we will continue to work on innovative formats to engage with them on relevant topics based on viewer response.”
She goes on to talk about FNG’s engagement with viewers across platforms and its success. “Our digital campaign for our most recent local production, ‘Spirited Traveller’, reached out to 26 million across digital platforms. We did a Facebook live video chat with Kalki Koechlin for our show ‘Kalki’s Great Escape’ which attracted over 6,12,000 people in a space of two hours. At the time of this campaign, we were the first lifestyle channel to use Facebook canvas ads, through which we got over 1 million unique views. For Fox Life’s recent show ‘Twist of Taste’, Vikas Khanna interacted with fans on Twitter #BlueRoom on the premiere day and received a tremendous response, reaching out to over 1.5 million users on Twitter. For our show ‘SoundTrek’, our fun musical emoji promo videos got over 2.6 million impressions.”