TAM media research’s TV channel ratings for the past six months do not throw any major surprises. Mass entertainment still rules the roost in the top ten.
In the all India market for the TG C&S 4+, Star Plus claims the leading position with an average channel share of 13.68 per cent. For this channel, the viewership base makes no discrimination of age, sex, caste, culture or even socio-economic factors. Following close is the Cable Regional category claiming 10.43 per cent. However, the cable market in India is so unorganised that advertisers cannot utilise this medium. Since it does not figure in the media plans, this is a section wasted.
The next in line is the southern king, Sun TV with an average channel share of 7.06 per cent. One reason why Star has almost double the share is that while Star might lure in some viewers in the south, Sun does not have any influence in the north.
Strengthening Sun family’s presence in the top channels, Gemini TV occupies the fourth spot. The channel takes in a 5.37 per cent channel share. Even if these ratings are observed in different points of time in the last six months, the first four spots remain the same. Going to the fifth on the scene, Sony Entertainment Television grosses 3.95 per cent. Sony’s graph in the later stages have increased indicating a growth in the channel. The gap between Sony and Zee Cinema, which holds the number six position, is not a wide one with the latter garnering a 3.42 per cent.
Zee Cinema is the first niche channel in the top ten list. Its positioning in this slot implies that Hindi feature films are a rage with the Indian viewer even in the south markets. However, mass channels are the ultimate bet. Eenadu TV’s 3.32 per cent puts it in slot seven. MAX comes in at eight with 2.79 per cent, beating ZEE TV by a tread at 2.74 per cent. The number 10 spot is occupied by Star Gold at 2.24 per cent.
Interestingly, ESPN which was on number 18 in the six-month score board, has an increasing graph for the past six weeks. If the six-week average figures (December 28 to February 7, 2004) were observed separately, ESPN beats Sony occupying position five with 5.01 per cent.
The contribution of south channels to the overall Indian TV viewership is also a point that cannot be missed. The weekly graphs further indicate that viewership on Indian television has grown.