Doordarshan, which has been revamping its marketing setup to aggressively take on the rival satellite channels, has fired a fresh salvo by seeking the services of Vijay Jindal, a well known marketing professional.
Jindal is a former head honcho of Zee TV and Bennet & Coleman. He has set up his television software and consultancy company Karma Network. Currently advisor to The Times of India in Mumbai, Jindal brings with him rich marketing experience in media with his appointment as honorary marketing advisor of Doordarshan.
Jindal appointment is a part of Doordarshan’s larger game plan to revamp its programming and marketing set up. Doordarshan under its new full time DG, S Y Quraishi has already opened its marketing offices in Mumbai, Chennai and Bangalore. And now Jindal will be coordinating Doordarshan efforts to open new marketing offices in Kolkata, Hyderabad, Trivandrum and Delhi in next three months.
Jindal’s appointment has been made in the back drop of Prasar Bharti board decision to follow private channels’ marketing strategy of acquiring content and market it directly with advertisers by slowly doing away with the concept of selling programmes through sponsorship. By following this pattern, Doordarshan will be able to retain the rights of the programme. The public broadcaster is already preparing to unveil its new policy of acquiring programme on commissioned/royalty basis, besides going in for off the shelf acquisition.
Jindal has a cut out task to convert Doordarshan channels’ and regional kendras into individual profit centres. He sees his new role as a think tank, complementing and reinforcing the efforts of Doordarshan marketing team. “ My priorities are well defined—brand building and revenue maximization, which I intend to achieve by synergising the marketing and programming operations of Doordarshan. My job is also to enhance the profile of Doordarshan among media planners and advertisers.” Jindal told exchange4media. S Y Quraishi DG Doordarshan says that Jindal’s rich marketing experience and expertise will come handy in advising Doordarshan on channel positioning to bring decisive change in product branding.
Jindal says that he is confident of making a quick turn around because he has tremendous faith in the public broadcaster which has the widest range of 90 million homes compared to 38 million homes reached by the satellite channels’. Even in the television rating, Doordashan is calling the shot. The latest TAM figures reveal that prime time TVR of DD1 in homes is 6.47% and audience share is 25.48% respectively. In contrast Star Plus has a TVR of 3.37% and audience share of 13.27%. Zee TV has TVR of 0.47% and audience share of 1.85% and Sony TV has a TVR of 1.35% and audience share of 5.33%.
Even on news front DD is far ahead of its rivals with TVR of 2.86% and audience share of 14.08% compared to Aaj Tak’s TVR of 0.1% and audience share of 0.47% and Star News’ TVR of 0.04% and audience share of 0.2%. “All that I need is to convince DD management to be pro-active and adopt aggressive marketing strategy to reap the benefit", asserts Jindal.
While Jindal will be giving a new direction to Doordarshan marketing operations his expertise will particularly come handy to market mega events. And his first major test will be to successfully market mini-World Cup in September for which Prasar Bharti has acquired terrestrial telecast rights while rival Sony Entertainment Television has got C&S rights.