Sony Entertainment Television is putting all its muscle behind its attempts to win back the No. 3 slot that it has lost to newcomers like NDTV Imagine and 9X. The channel has used its big ticket property, ‘10 Ka Dum’, to whip up interest in some of its existing shows. While Sony officials are “confident” of the move, media observers caution that competition today can kill.
The ‘10 Ka Dum’ has brought back interest in Sony Entertainment Television with the channel first signing on actor Salman Khan to host the show, and then promoting the show with all its might. Whether it was on the DLF IPL T20 stage or the extensive outdoor and print marketing that it embarked on, ‘10 Ka Dum’ was clearly touted as ‘big’. The latest phase of the campaign sees the creatives promote Sony’s existing shows simultaneously with ‘10 Ka Dum’. NP Singh, COO, Multi Screen Media, informed that this marketing tactic would continue for some time. Print is the medium largely used for this.
“The idea is to tell the viewers that fine, there is a big show coming and it is a week away, but in the meanwhile, there is a host of other shows on the channel that you can see,” said Singh. When asked whether this would make a difference to the channel’s ratings, he replied, “We are very confident about the show and our existing line-up as well. This is the push that we required and we are working towards it.”
However, the big question is whether it would work. According to OMD’s Harish Shriyan, new shows like ‘10 Ka Dum’ tended to become a key driver for the channel. He said, “The new show is bound to get more eyeballs, and it makes sense for the channel to then use that to rekindle interest in some of their key properties.”
Sandeep Lakhina, MD-India, West & South, Starcom Worldwide, brought another point of view. He said, “This is a good way to create awareness and excitement about what’s coming up. It can work for even re-runs of successful shows, but it may not work as much for remarketing existing or old shows as there may be existing views on the show already.”
While Shriyan and Lakhina both state that this was a shot that Sony had to take, they also asserted that this did not take away from the focus on ‘10 Ka Dum’. “The marketing has managed to generate a good amount of interest and awareness around the show,” Lakhina noted. But do these steps put Sony in a good position to climb back?
Shriyan observed, “The investment that Sony is making on this particular show is a beginning for them. The moment they launch these kinds of big property shows, apparently other shows will also be promoted on the other channels. The competition is stiff.”
Lakhina said that Sony was banking heavily on one weekend based show, while there was intense competition for the No. 3 slot. With Colors channel slated for launch soon, and the other No. 3 potentials getting more aggressive post IPL, Lakhina said that it would be interesting to watch if Sony could bounce back on the strength of ‘10 Ka Dum’.
He further said, “I would be extremely in the middle of the road on this, but having said that, I am optimistic on ‘10 ka Dum’ as a standalone property – a star loved by the masses, especially females, making his first appearance on TV, a very interesting format – I have seen the original a few times during my days in the US – and a humungous prize money.”
As is known ‘10 Ka Dum’ is based on the international format ‘The Power of 10’, which is still airing in markets such as Russia and Germany. This is the most expensive property on Sony at present, hence the stakes are huge.
(Additional inputs from Noor Fathima Warsia)