'News as a medium can no longer be sidelined by advertisers'

What does the changing ad landscape in these times mean?

e4m by Ruhail Amin
Updated: Apr 24, 2020 9:33 AM  | 3 min read
news channels

When it comes to share of advertising on TV, it has been the GECs that have dominated the scene. But while we are in lockdown, the advertising landscape on TV has been getting redrawn.

With fresh programming stalled, the new BARC numbers show a significant dip in advertising on Hindi GECs. News channels are the ones that are witnessing the highest advertising duration-8 million seconds to be precise, followed by English entertainment and movie channels.

So what does this spike in news viewership mean to marketers? Will this trend stay post lockdown time? 

To answer these questions we spoke to some marketers to get a sense of this new trend.

According to Mansoor Ali, Chief Sales and Marketing Officer, Hamdard India. News is no longer a medium that can be sidelined or ignored.

“As we know, consumers have a very specific pattern in which they consume media; it's like a personal code. News is not a medium that can now be sidelined or ignored, especially in India. In the current context, it has become even more critical and relevant. There is an influx of people watching news and the other important genre -- GEC-- has taken a complete backseat. So a large part of the viewership has moved from GEC to news.”

“Marketers will definitely look at news as an all-important medium to advertise as the news genre gains momentum. In my view, advertisers and marketers will put key bets on this genre in the coming time”, stated Ali.,

Abhishek Gupta, CMO, Edelweiss Tokio Life says that for any advertiser, this trend augurs very well.

“It's heartening to see the consumption of news has gone up significantly. I was looking at some figures and during this period of lockdown, the news consumption on TV has gone up by 10 folds. And not just TV, even online the numbers have gone up significantly.”

Gupta also added that post lockdown, these numbers will stabilise. “They will stabilise at a number which is higher than what they were before the lockdown.  So as a marketer and as an advertiser, I would definitely look at the news genre more favourably. Though as a category, we are highly tilted towards the news genre, with these numbers coming in, we might look at increasing our spends on news.”

Shenaaz Bapooji,  CMO Shopmatic believes that while there is a definite spike in advertising, the messaging now needs to be less flippant, as has been the case so far with news advertising.

“As a marketer, I have always been a fan of the news genre and I will continue to be. My advice to brands advertising on news channels is to look at the genre more seriously as it can deliver real impact.”

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