Thugs of Hindostan & festivals: It's celebration time for in-cinema advertising industry

Players expect 50-100% increase in revenues during the festival period

e4m by Misbaah Mansuri
Updated: Nov 9, 2018 8:05 AM

Over the years, films riding on big stars and cashing in on festive weekends of Diwali, Christmas and Eid have brought much joy to the exhibition and distribution services across the industry as far as in-cinema advertising is concerned. 

Making the most of the festive holiday, YRF slotted the release of Thugs of Hindostan a day after Diwali. Starring Aamir Khan, Amitabh Bachchan and Katrina Kaif, the adventure drama is expected to write new records for Bollywood films. Industry experts predict that the big release combined with the festive time will result in considerable increase in the advertiser interest and in-cinema advertising revenues.

Talking about the trend, Devang Sampat, Director – Strategic Initiatives, Cinépolis India, said, “We expect this to be an excellent week for our advertising business. Typically, we see a spike in inquiries during such festive weekends to the tune of 50-70 per cent over the average weeks.”

Sampat said with 350 screens of Cinèpolis, they are expecting to reach the highest ever Diwali week advertising revenue this time.

“With the release of Thugs of Hindostan during the festive week, we expect the advertising revenues to grow three fold as compared to our average weeks,” he said.

Rahul Puri, Managing Director at Mukta A2 Cinemas, asserted that there will be a large increase in advertiser interest as well as revenues. “The festive period is one of the key advertising periods in the year across all media platforms and vehicles, and in-film advertising will be no different as media planners and buyers allocate their budgets to make a larger impact on the minds of potential customers. With a big film like Thugs of Hindustan coming out this Diwali, advertisers will be keen to associate their brands with a film which is guaranteed to get eye-balls and viewers,” he reasoned.

Puri contended that it is difficult to quantify this explicitly, but it could be up to 50-100 per cent higher in certain cases.

Without divulging the figures, Seenu Kurien, VP sales and Marketing, Carnival Cinemas, said while there are the regular clients who advertise, many new clients come during the festive season.

“Majority of advertisers want to target the festive season or the time when there is a big release. This is peak time for advertising for the clients in the auto, telecom, FMCG and consumer-durables sectors who start running promotions during this time.” 

The festive revenue is a welcome addition to the in-cinema advertising industry which, experts say, has grown massively over the years. As per KPMG estimates, it has crossed the Rs 500 crore mark. In an interview with exchange4media, Siddharth Bhardwaj, Chief Marketing Officer - Head of Enterprise Sales, UFO Moviez, had earlier shared, “Cinema (advertising) should be Rs 850 crores in revenue. Before digitization, it was only cinema advertising happening across 300-400 screens in the country where movies were released. With the scale and the mass audience digitization has brought, brands have an avenue to build on their brand love/differentiation scores by using mass medium,” he had said.

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