We have not reached TV's full potential even today: Shashi Sinha
e4m TV First: Shashi Sinha, CEO, India, Mediabrands, shared his thoughts on the future of TV as a medium of advertising
We may have already moved to a digital world but television as a medium is still far bigger than digital, said Shashi Sinha, CEO, India, Mediabrands, while speaking at the fourth edition of e4m TV First summit held on Thursday.
At the virtual conference, Sinha shared his perspective on the topic: The future of TV as a medium for advertising in a digital world.
Commencing the session, he said, “The topic itself says ‘television as a medium of advertising in the digital world’, so the implication is that we have already moved to a digital world and TV just happens to be part of it. There’s no harm in saying that because of a couple of reports that the industry fraternity has put out in the last one month, including the Pitch Madison Advertising Report that says digital will go past television in terms of AdEx this year.”
“That's a very big news, but there is a bit of a catch in it. Firstly, these are all approximations, no one has their numbers. TV of course can be monitored through BARC but digital is very difficult to monitor. Having said that, let's assume the numbers are indicative and right. The limited point we'll make is that digital is an amorphous mass and there are many things to it. But if I was to break it up into two clear parts, the first part is performance and the second part is brand building.”
“Performance is a sizable part of digital, and its long-term future is very good and it really works. But that's not what it is all about. What will happen to performance as we go two years down the line when the cookie-less world comes in? What will happen to the PIs and APIs? And therefore, companies are building first-party data,” he said.
Sinha also pointed out that digital is still very small compared to TV in terms of brand building. “If you look at the brand building part of television or the advertising or the display part, digital is still very small compared to television. Television is still far bigger. I guess television is double the size of that so-called brand building display part of digital, if not more. I believe it will remain that way. And that's a strong statement I'm making at the risk of sounding old-fashioned. The reason I say that is as follows:
“Firstly, when it comes to television, we have not reached its full potential even today. As all of you know, television has about 67% penetration, which is approximately 78-79 crore individuals who watch television on a weekly basis. And if you break this up on the basis of data provided by BARC, there are probably 39 crores individuals who watch only television, and there are about 33 crore who watch both TV and digital. And there are about 8 to 10 crore individuals who watch only digital and don’t come to television. So the fact is that out of those 72 crore individuals who watch television, half of them, or more than half, are only TV viewers. So there is a sizable chunk of people who are watching only television,” he explained.
“India is a large country, and the growth will come. But growth in urban is relatively low compared to rural. Overall, rural will go faster, and rural is where a lot of these standalone TV individuals are,” he mentioned.
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