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Selling Airtime? Sun has its way

02-September-2002
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Selling Airtime? Sun has its way

Saravana Stores, Prince Jewellery, Komatha Milk, Arokya Milk, S.M Silks and Chennai Silks are just few of Chennai's popular brands that advertise extensively on Chennai's dominant channel Sun TV. Being region specific, these brands advertise only in the markets that they operate in and what better vehicle to use than Sun TV that enjoys a dominant market share. 'No negotiation' may be an added bonus!

Is Sun TV cheaper? While some media planners claim that Sun TV is definitely much cheaper than a Zee or a Sony, others explain the need to consider a national channel doesn't arise when the advertiser is a regional brand. According to Narendra Kumar Alambara, Channel Planning Director, Initiative Media, "The reason that local advertisers flock to Sun TV (or other Tamil Satellite Channels) is that their potential consumers are restricted and regional Channels offer that focus at efficient costs."

Narendra Kumar Alambara claims however that whether Sun TV's rates are reasonable, is a subjective. He explains, "On Sun the rates range from Rs.13000 to 25000 per 10 Secs and sometimes even more for Special Programmes. And as far as I know, there are no differential rates between National Advertisers & Regional/Local Advertisers. In most cases when you do a CPRP analysis, we find some programmes inspite of the higher rates are better given their delivery among audiences."

Sun TV is also well known for their 'Take it or leave it' attitude. Even FMCG major HLL has made futile attempts to negotiate with them over their rate card. According to V.Balachandran, Media Group Manager, Euro RSCG, "The biggest advantage of advertising on Sun TV is that they don't negotiate. Their rates are fixed. So whether they are dealing with an HLL or a Chennai Silks, their rates are the same." He explained however that while a bigger company could afford to go through TAM data before deciding on a particular slot, the smaller regional brands chose their slots depending on the costs.

What is more interesting however is that Sun TV isn't always cheaper than Zee and Sony that pan audiences across the country. While they include discounts and value additions to the grouping of programs for a certain costs, Sun TV believes only on Spot buys. But nevertheless, the purpose is served for most of the regional brands, as using one media vehicle such as Sun TV gets them results.

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