Rakhi Sawant, she of the wriggly dances and outrageous soundbites, kicked off her reality TV hunt for a groom on Monday with a jaw-dropping opening that sent the channel, NDTV Imagine surging in the holy grail of the 30-second commercial — the television rating point (TRP) game.
Rakhi Ka Swayamvar, the 9 pm programme in which Bollywood’s “item number” dancer puts several would-be men through her selection grill, appears poised to lift the fortunes of the channel, under severe competition from Colors, Star Plus and Zee.
“With ratings of 3.5 per cent in cable and satellite homes of the Hindi speaking market, Rakhi Ka Swayamvar is possibly the highest rated show in the recent history of NDTV Imagine,” said Joseph Eapen, director (research), aMap, which measures overnight ratings.
More important, the rating marked a 185 per cent leap over the channel’s three-week average of 1.2. The rating shows the share of the total audience tuned in to a programme at the moment it is measured.
Nikhil Madhok, vice-president, marketing at NDTV Imagine, said a two-month build-up had paid off. “In the last 4-5 days, there was a huge wave of interest,” he said. “We were confident, so we had put it on prime time.”
Of the other recent launches, the closest in opening success to Rakhi Ka Swayamvar has been India’s Got Talent, launched on June 27 on Colors. This programme garnered a rating of 2.2 per cent.
The other five new shows launched since June 27 across Zee TV, Colors and Star Plus got less than a two per cent viewership on their opening nights.