Close on the heels of ZEE TV launching a new strategy, and ZEE news putting its act together, ZEE English has decided to make its presence felt more strongly. However, the channel believes that it has better programming than the other channels in the category - and flaw - if any - lies with packaging and promotions.
The channel's agenda, right now, is to improve its promos. Explains Ajay Trigunayat, Vice-President, Zee English and Zee MGM, "There are two aspects of a promo - one is the functional and the other is glitz and glamour, the fluff aspect. We have changed it at both levels. For instance, the promos that we ran earlier did not convey day and time information effectively. Now we have standardised the format. The promos also encapsulate the flavour of the programmes. We have also changed the graphic machines, and appointed a promo director who has been in US for a decade, and before that spent 10 years in Dubai, and excels at his job."
However, the channel is not focusing all its energies only on making its promos better, it is also in talks with a few US studios of repute to bring in their latest programmes to India. This, practically, means that the Indian audience will be able to see a season at the same time as the audience in US, or with a delay of couple of months . Says Trigunayat, "We are trying to bring in seasons and episodes in such a quick manner as has never been done before by any of the English channels in the country. Tendency is to bring in programmes that have been reasonably successful in USA. Obviously, we are taking a risk by bringing in the most current programmes, and we are also paying higher for it. But we are making a serious effort to predict which programmes would be more successful in the US and bring those progrmmes to India, sooner than later".
Trigunayat also accepts that a few arbitrary changes were made in ZEE English programming sometime back and due to them the channel suffered. However, he says, "Those are the things of the past, we are not going to make such changes anymore. Whatever changes we have made in recent past - for instance bringing back Friends to 10 PM slot on weekdays is result of consumer feedback. And it has increased ZEE English viewership to 52% in that particular time band" The channel had earlier shifted Friends to only weekend and had noticed a large drop in viewership.