For the past seven weeks running, Colors has held the lead in attracting viewers among general entertainment channels, trumping Star Plus and Zee TV to the top slot. After Star Plus was displaced from its nine-year lead position among GECs in the second week of April, the three top contenders were playing ping pong for the top slot, according to TAM Peoplemeter data for weekly television viewership in the cable and satellite, four years-plus age group, Hindi-speaking market.
While there is no doubt that Indian TV viewers prefer serials over other programmes, the strengthening of interest in reality shows has been more marked recently. A look at genre shares of shows on GECs, according to TAM’s data, reveals that while serials commanded the highest viewership at close to 50 per cent of total GEC viewership in the last four weeks, reality shows ranged between nine and 10.5 per cent share over the same period. Only feature films have higher genre share than reality shows, after serials. Of course, cricket peaks during matches.
Rajesh Kamat, CEO, Colors, says, “Reality shows create a buzz for the channel and rub off on its other shows. With the start of Bigg Boss 3 on Colors, we’ve seen all our top shows gaining viewership, with our reach numbers and time spent by viewers going up.” Bigg Boss 3 opened on October 4. Taking a five-week span before and after its launch, TAM’s data showed that the top five serials on the channel added viewership, except Balika Vadhu.
A couple of weeks ago, in fact, Colors breached the 350 points — touching 356 points — GRP (gross rating points, representing channel viewership in the week) mark for the first time in the GEC segment. The following two weeks saw a dip to 340 and 323 points, but these were still the highest among the GECs, as per TAM data. Zee TV’s highest recent GRP was two weeks ago at 271 points and Star Plus’ highest of 281 points was eight weeks ago.
Kamat is hoping that Colors’ performance over the past seven weeks will give it a “consistent performer” perception with advertisers and their media agencies on audience delivery.
Saumya Sarkar, assistant VP, Lintas Media Group, says, “In a fluctuating GRP scenario where any of two or three channels can be number one in a week and their performance gaps are small, a media planner may consider whoever gives better value. But if a channel holds a consistent lead position for two months and the gap is larger, the planner cannot ignore that. If he does, instead, go for numbers two or three, there will be a drop in the value he gets.”