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IBF & TAM: Chances of one-way street strategy succeeding are low

16-July-2013
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IBF & TAM: Chances of one-way street strategy succeeding are low

I think Busybee was ahead of his times. In a short end piece, which I think is apt in this digital age, he wrote a cryptic critique on the life of a Mumbaikar, while commenting with telling humour on the happenings in Mumbai and India.

So, saluting Behram Contractor, I am penning some nuggets on the latest TAM – IBF crisis (all my own work).

To beat inflation and the rising price bogey, my fruit and vegetable vendor has thought of a simple idea of quoting all rates @ quarter kg instead of rate per kg. TV channels are also forcing the measure of CPT.

Going by the reaction of agencies and advertisers, IBF has clearly taken aggressive high ground and rejected any overtures of reconciliation or reason by other members.

Probably IBF is the strongest organisation among the players in the game viz. TAM, AAAI and ISA, and they contribute to a huge chunk of the research cost, which gives them the strength to be the aggressor.

And, who knows, like the 25 per cent unilateral surcharge, the IBF may well be forced to withdraw their demand as advertisers withdraw ads. Or, better sense may prevail and IBF will engage in talks with the other players in the game. Chances of the one-way street strategy succeeding are low.

What is very clear is that unless any of the solutions take care of the concerns of the TV channels, we will see one more eruption and it is getting progressively difficult to handle them. And so I called my Head of Strategy, and after a 30-slide PPT, I conclude that all data will be available as before, but after a month, except TVRs, which can be computed by anybody. That means research is not much of an issue in the current case.

I recall one movie channel (note that it was driven by marketing and not the sales head) resorted to a ‘One Minute Break’ approach, which is a case study on how to improve stickiness and yield (rate/10 second). Also, IPL rates were raised to a pretty decent level with a smart selling strategy – whether you look at either CPT or CPRP or whatever.

This brings me to my final point…that rate yield of any media depends not so much on research, as it does on pure performance, demand and supply, and selling strategy.

The author is CEO, Allied Media

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