How Star Pravah’s adaptation strategy is playing key role in its popularity

Most of the top-rated shows on Star’s Marathi GEC are adaptations of the network’s popular Hindi or other language shows

e4m by Sonam Saini
Updated: Feb 11, 2021 1:01 PM  | 5 min read
star pravah

The Walt Disney-Star India’s Marathi General Entertainment Channel (GEC) Star Pravah emerged as the leader in the Maharashtra/Goa market in BARC’ Week 38 (2020) data, and has maintained the position since then. The channel continued with its dominance in 2021 as well, clocking the highest viewing minutes of 44.4 billion. While the ranking for other channels remains unaffected, they witnessed a drop in viewing minutes, which was not the case with Star Pravah.

So, what is driving the channel’s popularity?

Experts say though the quality and variety of content have been the reasons behind Star Pravah’s success, it is the channel’s idea of adapting network’s other language shows that is giving it a major push.  

According to Keerat Grewal, Partner Ormax Media, “Star Pravah has stepped up the momentum by adapting network's hit GEC content of other languages. This has increased the success rate for the channel. These shows and characters, rooted in Indian values and female empowerment, have also shown a quick uptake on ‘Ormax Characters India Loves’, which is our character popularity chart that covers Hindi and regional language GECs.”

On ‘Ormax Characters India Loves – Marathi’, four of the top 10 favourite GEC characters are from regional remakes launched on Star Pravah. ‘Arundhati’, a character from ‘Aai Kuthe Kay Karte’ has topped the charts. The show is a remake of Star Jalsha’s hit show Sreemoyee, whose Hindi remake Anupamaa has also been a mega success for Star Plus in 2020.

Not just the characters, a lot of popular shows on Star Pravah are adaptations of Star’s popular dramas in different languages. For instance, ‘Sukh Mhanje Nakki Kay Asta’ is a show based on the Bengali series ‘Ke Apon Ke Por’.  Similarly, ‘Phulala Sugandha Maticha’, the top-rated programme of Week 4 (BARC data), is an adaptation of the Star Plus’ popular series ‘Diya Aur Baati Hum’. Another top programme of Star Pravah ‘Mulgi Zhali Ho (a show ranked second in the top five programmes of Week 4) is a remake of Star Maa's Telugu series ‘Mouna Raagam’. The shows that ranked third and fourth in Week 4, ‘Rang Maza Vegla’ is based on the Malayalam series ‘Karuthamuthu’, whereas ‘Sahkutumb Sahparivar’ is a remake of Tamil serial ‘Pandian Stores’. 

When asked about what led to the success, Kevin Vaz, President & Head - Infotainment, Kids & Regional Entertainment Channels, Star & Disney India, said, the network takes great measures to add local flavours and nuances that are representative of the audiences and help make the content more meaningful and personal.

“The quality of our content combined with the meticulous creative execution of storylines has helped us create a special bond with our viewers. We are focused on two critical aspects - sustained quality and compelling content-, and are working with storytellers from the national and regional milieu to present the very best. We are delighted that our content is resonating well with the viewers,” he elaborated. 

Vaz also mentioned that Star Pravah has always strived to provide an eclectic mix of entertaining content to Marathi-speaking viewers. “An important part of our content strategy was the refresh of our primetime line-up with four new shows. Every new show offers a variety of storylines and is based on deep-rooted consumer insights. These shows are: ‘Sukh Mhanje Nakki Kay Asta’, ‘Phulala Sugandha Maticha’, ‘Mulgi Zhali Ho’, and ‘Jyotiba’,” said Vaz.

“Our marketing and distribution approach has been to tap into newer audiences and widen our demographics. In the past couple of years, we have scaled up our touchpoints with consumers, having executed multiple events across Maharashtra. We have seen great results owing to our strategy,” added Vaz. 

“Star Pravah has become indispensable for brands today. We work closely with brands and advertisers to offer holistic solutions. The channel has witnessed an excellent response from national and regional brands. Maharashtra is a priority market for most brands, and Star Pravah has become the first port of call for national and regional brands alike. In fact, with the channel’s excellent performance, we are seeing an upsurge in demand for the channel not only from existing brands but also from new brands,” shared Vaz.

Four out of the top five programmes in Marathi genre in Week 4 (BARC data) air on Star Pravah and are adaptations of other language shows.  

Adaptation is definitely a trend that the industry is likely to witness across languages, but is it also an investment that the network is making in its key markets? 

“Star has a big bouquet of services and there will be some kind of cross-selling of existing successful shows dubbed or remade in multiple languages,” said, Karan Taurani, Vice President, Elara Capital. “Star as a brand has done well in other markets as well. For instance, it has surpassed Sun TV in the primetime slot and GRPs in the Tamil market. I believe big investments in content is one of the reasons, as the kind of investment Star does is very different from other broadcasters,” he said.

“The growth potential in regional genres, especially Marathi and Bangla, is massive as these markets are small in size and the pricing these channels attract is 1/7th of what Hindi GECs would attract. There is a big gap which needs to be filled. In these markets, the potential is high but the investment is low and the ROI is better,” explained Taurani.   

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