TV industry hopeful of good ad spends even after Diwali

Rather than putting money around festivals, most brands are spreading it across the year, say industry leaders

e4m by Moumita Bhattacharjee
Updated: Oct 30, 2019 5:46 PM

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For broadcasters, festive season has always been the time to pocket maximum gains in terms of advertising revenue. Almost 40 per cent of a year’s total ad spends take place during the period. This year, industry experts had predicted a revenue growth of 10-15 per cent during festivals. But post Diwali, ad spends normally take a dip, and experts believe it could be the usual 10 per cent this year too. They, however, assure that it shouldn’t be a reason to worry. 

Ashish Bhasin, CEO, DAN APAC and Chairman, DAN India, explains that festive spends always decline post Diwali, and this year won’t be any different.

“Ad spends do tend to peak around Diwali. Of course, after every festive season, you will always see a decline. This year won’t be anything different or drastic. We were prepared for the worst this year. Everything was negative two-three months ago. But now, there are some green shoots that are visible. I don't think there's any significant reason to get worried. I feel we will end the year on a high single or double digit growth, which is a good place to be,” says Bhasin.

“Yes, it could have been better, but things to me are looking better than what they appeared two-three months ago. Usually, there is a 10 per cent drop post Diwali. This year won’t be any different,” he adds.

Ashish Sehgal, Chief Growth Officer, ZEEL, though feels it’s too early to talk about the next couple of months, but he too is quite hopeful.

“If you see the months of June and July, they were little low than the last financial year. It was the impact of new tariff order (NTO) coupled with overall recession. That is why advertiser sentiments were not good. But August and September saw a pick-up in the overall business with respect to the previous months. However, compared to last financial year, September was higher than last year. October went flat, but I would still call it a good month since I was expecting a huge decline because Diwali this year was of shorter period. Last year, the entire month of October saw celebrations as Diwali fell in November."

He explained that last year, brands were spending less during June-July due to the introduction of GST. Brands had money but they had postponed their spends. And by the time they were ready to spend, festivals were knocking at the doors. So they went all out. That’s why Diwali last year saw unprecedented spends.

But Sehgal is hopeful about the coming months. "In the last few days, as per reports, there has been a good footfall of customers in retail shops. Sales picked up. So advertisers may pump in more money," he shares.

Pawan Jailkhani, CRO, 9X Media, too admitted that the festive season has been quite flat compared to last year. But he too believes that there won’t be much decline in ad spends post Diwali.

“What I see this year is that festive has been quite flat compared to last year. There hasn’t been a big spike on festival spends. The growth has been only 5-7 per cent.” 

But he isn’t too bothered about the prospects of a decline in ad spends post Diwali.

“Overall, there won’t be much decline this year because the base itself has been low. The simple reason is there were a lot of brands that weren’t advertising during this time. They were waiting and watching. In the next two to three weeks, more brands will come in. The measures government has taken in the last six-eight weeks will benefit the brands now and they will start spending. Brands were waiting to see how the demand was during Diwali in terms of consumer spends. So to push it further, they will advertise during mid-November. Rather than putting money around festivals, most brands are spreading it across the year. That’s helpful,” he elaborates.  

However, Jailkhani does have a concern. “The only concern that is hitting us right now is that a lot of winter brands used to advertise immediately after Diwali. But it isn’t the fact this time round. There will be late winters this time. That will be a concern because if the winter is delayed, ad spends will get late.”

 

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