RED FM moves to a more artist-driven space with 'Ricky Singh Ka VYRL Countdown'

The newly-launched indie music countdown show supports non-film music artist and draws in regional brands who want to connect with youth TG

e4m by Noel Dsouza
Updated: Feb 10, 2020 8:55 AM
Ricky Singh ka VYRL countdown

True to its brand philosophy and tagline ‘Bajaate Raho!’ RED FM 93.5 ensures that they always speak up for the right cause and that their listeners are at the heart of everything. By not sticking to status quo, the Sun-Group owned radio network has 431 campaigns and titles to its name, which won them awards for Best Brand, Best FM Station and Best RJ’s over the years.

After launching two successful shows in their Red Indies initiative, they have launched the third show: Ricky Singh ka VYRL countdown in partnership with Universal Music India. The show was launched with RJ Rishi Kapoor, Senior Vice President Vinit Thakkar of the Universal Music Group India & South Asia, COO & Director, RED FM and Magic FM Nisha Narayanan and multiple celebrity singers in attendance at Soho House, Mumbai on 7th February 2020.

At the launch of the show, Nisha Narayanan discussed some insightful key points and the impact the show will bring about.

She shared: “The larger umbrella is independent music and we launched a sub-brand called Red Indies. Under that, we decided to support a lot of Indian Indie music, which is also regional agnostic. So different kinds of languages will be supported. We launched two shows before this. One being ‘Indie Hai Hum’ by Darshan Rawal for Indian music. The second one is ‘Red Indies Debut’. This is the third initiative is the Ricky Singh ka VYRL countdown show. There is a need to have a countdown show, especially in Indie music. Radio has always been blamed for not really playing Indie music. Somewhere it is changing from a Bollywood driven Industry to a more artist-driven Industry. That's the whole idea and spirit of the new show. The countdown show is clearly about the top 10 songs. It is dynamic in nature and we'll keep changing it.”

Talking about the partnership with VYRL Originals (Universal Music India) for this show Narayanan remarked, “We have been working with Universal on various other projects. As a countdown, show this is the first time that we are doing something together. It is great to have them on as a partner. They are an audio label and we play music so the combination is a very potent one. It's no more about radio associations it's about partnerships and collaborations. This is one such collaboration we are doing and I think it's very exciting.”

Narayanan also spoke about brand partnerships for the project: “The brands will come on board. The last two projects that we did, which are still continuing, has got some excellent responses as far as brands are concerned. So to say that independent music may not have a lot of brand support is a myth. Given the history of the last six months, we have got some excellent responses from brands. Also, a lot of Independent music reaches out to the youth and the pulse of the youth. So the brands really want to reach out to the youth then they will come on board.”

Regional content will draw in regional brands, believes Narayanan. Sharing her views on this, she stated: “Regional brands today also want to have an inroad or want to enter into a bigger market. They are looking for bigger properties, they are looking for IPs, which they can associate with and grow together.”

 A lot of radio channels today are set on making influencers out of RJs to spread the brand message as they have a personal connection with the listeners, which garners impact.

“RJs, besides being the face of the brand, are also influencers. They are there every day, using the medium, and they are interactive. Today, the RJ persona is not just on the radio. They are on the radio, social media as well as on the ground. There is a 360-degree touch point that an RJ also offers. I think that is working very well for us”, shared Narayanan.

The FM channel’s social causes, for instance, are very RJ driven. The latest, ‘Vote The Haq’ campaign for Delhi elections is a testament to that.

The channel is looking forward to partner with a streaming platform in the future; however, for now, their focus is entirely on the radio. They are going all out, promoting the countdown show aggressively on social media and other digital platforms.

Lastly, sharing how the advertising trends have changed in the radio industry, Narayanan signed off saying, “It is not about FCT (Free Commercial Time) anymore. Focusing on the FCT business is not going to take us a long way. It is changing into an idea and innovation business. A lot of brands do not advertise just to get top of the mind recall right now because they use social media for that. They want tactical activations.”

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