Removing the viewership-revenue mismatch in kids genre

From attracting non-traditional advertisers, licensing content to brand integrations, players in the kids space are going all out to attract ad revenues

e4m by Synjini Nandi
Updated: May 14, 2013 8:19 PM
Removing the viewership-revenue mismatch in kids genre

The kids’ genre has registered a spurt in growth in terms of viewership and reach post digitisation. However, despite the upswing in ratings, advertising revenues still remain an area of concern for players in the kids’ genre.

Increased viewership, but not revenues
According to a KPMG report, the kids’ genre occupies 6.47 per cent of the viewership pie on an all India basis. The quarter has observed a growth of around 10-20 per cent in viewership numbers in the last couple of years. While two years back, the increase was around 20 per cent, an increase of around 11 per cent was observed last year during April, May and June. The KPMG report also revealed that that the kids’ genre occupies the fourth position in the viewership pie, after regional GECs and the Hindi movies category, with Hindi GECs occupying the top slot in terms of viewership numbers.

In terms of advertising revenues, the kids’ genre spends observed a growth of 20 per cent in 2012 as opposed to 5 per cent growth in 2011, as reported in the Pitch-Madison Media Advertising Outlook report. But the question is, is it still enough?

Why kids’ as a category is still underpriced?
Though the category has shown an upswing in terms of viewership numbers, the revenue is still not at par. It has been often observed that if a player in the Hindi General Entertainment space gets Rs 10 for one rating point on a CS 4+ all India audience, a kids channel gets Rs 2 or Rs 3 for one rating point, which holds true of the entire category.

Rationalising on the same, Kartik Sharma, Managing Partner, Maxus explained, “If you look at the Hindi GEC genre, it is much more mass based as compared to the kids’ genre, which has limited appeal because of its target audience. Hence, apart from the narrow set of brands that are relevant to this genre, the advertisers would be much keener to buy spots on the Hindi GEC space. Hence, it is not really right to compare both the genres since both are very different from one another in terms of programming content and the nature of the shows.”

Experts also believe that one of the significant reasons that have led to the category observing lower ad rates is the fact that there is an immense amount of clutter and increasingly lesser ownership. Even a slightly larger sponsorship will attract nothing less than 10 to 12 sponsors. Another significant aspect that needs to be kept in mind is the fact that though internationally we have seen content translate in terms of various commercial purposes and innovative product categories, the same is not a trend that has been observed in India. Since this is not a common concept here, the players lose out on leveraging their most popular characters through the same.

Attracting non-traditional advertisers, licensing content, brand integrations, multiple TV households and more
But though the genre might be comparatively underpriced, players in the broadcast space are optimistic about the future opportunities. According to Nina Elavia Jaipuria, EVP & Business Head – Kids Cluster, Viacom18 Media, the category has never been better post digitisation. Ad rates have been increasing. Every advertiser is realising that it is a good prospect and hence, the genre has been observing the entry of different categories such as insurance, retail, FMCG and so on, in addition to the usual advertisers such as Cadbury.

Commenting on the favourable periods of ad growth, Juhi Ravindranath, Vice President, Ad Sales, South Asia Turner International India stated, “Rates do increase during the summer season due to increased demand and limited inventory. The summer months, followed by the festive season, are the best time for any kids channel. The inventory sold may vary from month to month. We ensure ad rates do not dip during any particular period. We do this by signing long-term commitments with clients that are mutually beneficial.”

A core focus area for would be to bring in more non-traditional advertisers into the genre. Innovations is another key area that works for this genre. Licensing of characters, vignettes, on-ground events, as well as online websites also help drive revenues.

According to Maxus’ Sharma, digitisation and the advent of double and triple television sets in household would also fuel the increase in ad rates in the near future.

Experts concluded by stating that though sponsorship might have a surety of being seen, it would not have a deep impact at the end of the day. Hence, a good idea is to do a movie out of television content as has been observed in the case of ‘Chhota Bheem’, which gives a surety of integration, impact and ownership.

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