By receiving over 125 million registration calls, ‘KBC 2’ has already created a record of sorts. What is more interesting, however, is the pan India mixture of the people who have called, where the smaller towns see more volume than the metros. A closer look at these call-ins reiterates the fact that there is much more television consumption in India today than the 24 cities that the ratings systems measure.
STAR India’s Senior VP, Interactive, Viren Popli, told exchange4media that the highest of almost 25 lakh (23.68 lakh) registrations were received on a single day. While only 11 per cent of the entries were though SMS and 89 per cent through calls, the divide between BSNL and Airtel was 75 per cent and 25 per cent, respectively.
Looking at the areas that have fuelled the number of calls, 29 per cent registrations are from the North, 12 per cent from South, 20 per cent registrations from the East and 39 per cent from the West. If the metro markets are seen, only 8 per cent call-ins are from Mumbai, 7.6 per cent from Delhi, while Kolkata contributed 5.3 per cent, Chennai 2 per cent, and Bangalore, 2.2 per cent.
If a state-wise split is seen, Maharashtra has seen the highest numbers of calls with 15 per cent, the NCR is next at 10 per cent. Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan have 7 per cent plus each. Other areas that have contributed are Orissa, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh (E), West Bengal and Karnataka.
“Of the 3,000 STD codes available in India, we have got calls from 88 per cent,” said Popli. Giving the channel’s point of view here, he said, “Perhaps the most noticeable insight here is that most of these calls have come from smaller town and cities.”
He further said, “A clear derivation that can be taken from this is that television consumption and a viewer’s willingness to interact with interesting content is no longer limited to just major towns and cities, the data of which is available. It stretches far wider than that, showing that there are many delivering markets there, that do not even come on the map currently.”
Another point that he made was that the number of calls that had come in indicated the mobile and landline penetration in the country, which could be yet another area that could be tapped into.
“Also, you have to remember that these are calls only from BSNL, MTNL and AirTel,” expressed Popli, “which means that of the 120 million people actually available, only 58 million had access to make calls and this is a huge result going by that.”
Asserting that technologically taking anything more than this would be no mean feat, Popli said, “In the current scenario, we try and integrate more people, but this was the best that technology that would allow.”
‘KBC 2’ is in its last phase now, with the final round of calls culminating on November 29, 2005. The channel is bringing the show back again in the next season, but in this round, the property, in terms of ratings, has given STAR Plus no reasons to complain. The biggest high that broadcasters can take from examples like these is that the Indian audience is eager to participate in interesting properties – the deal is to be able to get these properties.