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Genre Check: The Colors surge continues in Hindi GECs; Reach & sustainability questioned

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Genre Check: The Colors surge continues in Hindi GECs; Reach & sustainability questioned

The week 36 data for the year 2008 from TAM Media Research yet again has some good numbers for Colors. In the Hindi speaking markets for the C&S 4+, the channel has maintained the 150-GRP mark that it had delivered last week. In the 8.00 pm to 8.30 pm slot on weekdays that houses ‘Balika Vadhu’, the channel beats genre leader Star Plus as well. If the aMap data for week 37 is seen, Colors has beaten Zee TV to be on the No. 2 slot in week 37. Media analysts are excited with the growth that Colors is showing and state that the channel very clearly is a threat to even the No. 2 player in the genre. Nonetheless, they have a few concerns too.

Another week of highs

When the all day data is observed, in week 35, Star Plus had 282 GRPs, Zee TV had 195 GRPs, and Colors had 159 GRPs. Star Plus and Colors grew by a few points while Zee TV had marginally dropped when compared to last week. Sony had 90 GRPs in this week and is followed by Star One at 84 GRPs and NDTV Imagine at 76 GRPs. Sahara One gets on the next tier with 66 GRPs, 9X had 61GRPs, and SAB is at 32 GRPs. Zee Next is still in its single digit ratings and had 8 GRPS.

If only the primetime ratings are seen, Star Plus scored 151 GRPs, Zee TV hit 119 and Colors got 83 GRPs. Following these, Sony is at 46 GRPs, Star One had 42 GRPs and Imagine managed 35 GRPs. Sahara One and 9X scored a 31 and 29, respectively, in the primetime ratings.

The Colors’ team would also be celebrating because in the 8.00 pm to 8.30 pm slot, ‘Balika Vadhu’ has beaten all channels, and this is the second consecutive week of its reign. ‘Balika Vadhu’ averaged at 3.68 points in week 36 and this number was at 3.42 in week 35. The show occupied three slots in the top 10 episodes of the week. Another show that had done well for Colors was the mythology ‘Jai Shree Krishna’, which had averaged at 2.64 rating points. ‘Bigg Boss’ had maintained a 2 plus ratings on weekdays and over 1 on weekends.

As per the aMap data, in week 37, which is September 7 to 13, 2008, Colors was the No. 2 channel across Hindi GECs. Star Plus had an overall weekly GRP of 257. Colors managed a GRP of 155, while Zee TV is at 151. NDTV Imagine is the fourth channel according to this week’s aMap data with 94 GRPs. Star One and Sony followed with 81 and 79 GRPs, respectively. 9X had 64 GRPs, Sahara One had 59 and SAB was at 34.3 GRPs.

TAM Media Research data has shown a healthy weekly growth graph for Colors. After the launch GRPs of 81 in week 30, Colors has stayed above the 100 GRP mark striking even a 163 GRPs in week 34. The channel has steadily been closing its gap with Zee TV. aMap data put Colors as the number one channel viewed on September 13, 2008 beating Star Plus by almost 7 points.

Phenomenal growth, but some cautions

Media analysts are united in stating that Colors has shown one of the most encouraging growths that any newcomer in the Hindi GEC genre could have thought of. It may be recalled that Colors officials themselves have been quoted saying that they were looking at a 100-GRP mark in the first three months. The target was achieved in the second week itself. The catch, however, is that Colors is yet to reach the level of channels like Star Plus and Zee TV on counts like reach. The second aspect is that the channel has invested heavily in its programming and marketing. It remains to be seen how long it can invest in this fashion to maintain these numbers.

Sandip Tarkas, President, Consumer Strategy, Future Group, said, “In terms of performance, the channel has already shown some very credible numbers and that is a good thing. One should also remember that there are huge monies pumped in the channel right now – for both programming and marketing. How long can that go on, and by that derivation, how long can they sustain such numbers? The ride they are on otherwise is remarkable.”

R Gowthaman, MD, MindShare India, observed, “The current supply of GRPs on the channel is on the back of 2-3 shows. The repeats of these are also adding to the overall count. But you have to see the reach potential of a channel too, which is critical. At present, Colors is much behind the likes of Zee TV and Star Plus on reach. Very clearly, people today are watching shows not channels. Colors has had tent-pole programming on a back-to-back basis and soon there is another new show coming from them. These are expensive shows that are delivering for the channel and there can be a problem of sorts too.”

Jeffrey Crasto, Senior VP and Head Buying, MPG India and South Asia, said, “Colors has shown very positive growth and they are already a threat to the established players in the genre. They have invested in their programming, but their shows have also delivered, unlike some of the other channels like Sony and 9X that have invested, but there still aren’t very good numbers coming. Whether Colors can sustain these numbers, given the dynamism of this genre, is another question.”


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