'There is a higher demand for dedicated movie channels in the Bhojpuri market'

Amarpreet Singh Saini, Business Head Zee Biskope & Big Ganga, ZEEL and Samrat Ghosh, Cluster Business Head, East ZEEL, talk to us about the launch of Bhojpuri movie channel, Zee Biskope

e4m by Sonam Saini
Updated: Jan 10, 2020 9:08 AM
ZEE Biskope launch

Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd (ZEEL) is expanding its regional presence and launching a second channel primarily for the Bihar, Jharkhand and East UP markets. Bhojpuri movie channel- Zee Biskope aims to gain considerable HSM viewership as well with key markets like Mumbai, Delhi, Rajasthan, Gujarat, and Kolkata forming core. The channel seeks to be the destination of authentic Bhojpuri entertainment with a library of over 300 movies, and it will be going on air on 14 January 2020. 

The Bihar and Jharkhand market is predominately Hindi driven viewership and about 70% of viewership comes from Hindi GECs and Hindi movie channels. Bhojpuri constitutes about 20-25% share in the viewership. 

Speaking about the Bhojpuri market growth and launching a movie channel, Amarpreet Singh Saini, Business Head Zee Biskope and Big Ganga, ZEEL, said that there is a higher demand for dedicated movie channels. The idea is to capitalize on that by launching a separate movie channel and lead Big Ganga towards consolidating a GEC journey which is currently underserved on the GEC content. 

“Big Ganga is the leading GEC channel but it needs to do more because there is obviously an appetite for authentic Bhojpuri GEC content as well, which we have seen in the original content that we have done so far, it has always been lapped up very strongly. It creates a room for Ganga to develop as a true GEC brand and all the movie appetite will be served on this new movie channel. Together we would be aiming towards the leading share in the category,” shared Saini. 

The TV consumption in regional markets is increasing rapidly and the Bhojpuri content industry has grown many folds in recent years. Samrat Ghosh- Cluster Business Head, East ZEEL mentioned, “In the last three years we have seen this market evolve in terms of viewership. The Bhojpuri GEC and Movies pie has grown by 85% and that is a very good indication of the potential it holds. Also, we have seen expanding in the regional markets helped us to the entire category.”  

The Hindi GEC has grown at 40% in the last three years in terms of consumption. Going with the audience demand and gap therein,  it was the right moment for ZEEL to launch a dedicated Bhojpuri movie channel. Backed by well researched and carefully curated content line up the aim is to provide unmatched entertainment with the launch of Zee Biskope.  

Saini spoke about the trends specifically referring to the movie viewership in that region which also makes Zee Biskope different from others. He said, “There are some trends which are very unique to the Bhojpuri market, like the movie consumption itself is very high in the category. The other unique thing about this category is that it's a very hero driven consumption. People come to sample the movie of the hero rather than the title.” 

Saini further added and said the other trend that we have seen is that there had been an attempt on the viewers' side to look at movies in terms of genre, as these are romantic movies or these are family movies, but the channels available in the category have not made an attempt to capitalize on this evolving interest of the viewer. “Most of the channels which are present in the category of very generic and they're often just putting movies, whereas, with Zee Biskope, our effort and the differentiator is that we will be specifically targeting viewers basis their interest which has not been attempted in the category. Our brands have been created according to the viewer's interest like primetime bands are where male viewership is high hence we are placing action movies in that time band. There is a dedicated focused attempt at generating viewership and presenting content in a curated manner has not been done in the category, which is what z by scope will be attempting and that we are very confident that that will drive traction because the consumer has a need but it has not been met.” 

With a strong content library that includes the recent blockbuster such as Nirahua Challal London, Sher Singh, Saiyyan Dagabaaz and others. The exclusive World television premiere movies every weekend will bring the best of movies to the small screen. Saini is confident about the channel’s progress primarily for the reasons- there is high traction for movies in that region on television and this traction only increasing with time. 

The channel is taking an interesting marketing route to promote the upcoming new movie channel. The channel will be represented by the 'three pillars' of the Bhojpuri film industry- Nirahua, Pawan Singh and Khesari Lal Yadav will be the faces of the channel's brand campaign. Saini said, "One of the key philosophies of the brand is that we are a differentiated offering. So, that philosophy has been taken on board even when we're looking at our marketing campaign and marketing outlay that we have done. The biggest differentiator is that it would be a first in the industry that the three superstars of the Bhojpuri industry will be seen together. We are doing three brand films with them. We believe three of them coming together will create a viewership. We are getting three leading Khans of the Bhojpuri industry."

He further added, "Also, we have planned a lot of interesting innovative activities. For example, we are going to do an event -the largest screening you know of the movie that will be the launch event which will be done in Patna. We will attempt digital wall paintings, which has not been attempted by a brand because we have seen that as you go into the interior of Bihar and Jharkhand movie posters don't reach the interior so people usually have wall paintings is how they come to know that this movie is getting released. So we are going to take that consumer learning and we're going to do digital paintings for advertising our brand. We are also doing Biskope Mascot- pairing two Bhojpuri characters- Bhaiyaji and Gamchaji and they will be talking movies and reviews. Every leg of our marketing campaign, we have ensured that there are standout differentiated attempts, which brings the brand to people's notice.”

The channel boasts movies across eras, regions and legends such as Manoj Tiwari, Ravi Kishan, current superstars like Nirahua, Pawan and Khesari and upcoming favourites Chintu Pandey and Yash Mishra. 

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