We keep the cus­tomer at the cen­tre.

The Brand Reporter - - RADIO SPEAK - Rahul J Namjoshi Busi­ness Head MY FM sudipto.ad­hi­cary@afaqs.com

Ra­dio is a hy­per­local medium and can tap into the emo­tional con­nect of its au­di­ence es­pe­cially through lo­cal­iza­tion. We in­ter­viewed Mr. Rahul Namjoshi, Busi­ness Head, MY FM, about re­vamp­ing of con­tent in Gu­jarat and the fu­ture roadmap. Edited Ex­cerpts:

It’s been 11 months since you’ve taken the role of Busi­ness Head. How was the ex­pe­ri­ence? And, what has been your im­me­di­ate fo­cus upon tak­ing the man­tle?

This com­pany has been set up by Har­ish and from day one we made sure that, MY FM is a cus­tomer cen­tric or­ga­ni­za­tion, over the years we have de­vel­oped a sys­tem and process which has helped us to be­come the lead­ing ra­dio sta­tion in our mar­kets. From the first day, what­ever we have done - be it the prod­uct, the ad­ver­tise­ment, on-ground events, we have kept the cus­tomer at the cen­tre. This is the key fo­cus point for me and I’m push­ing the legacy for­ward mak­ing it big­ger.

Be­sides this, we fo­cus on 3 key pil­lars.

Firstly, ra­dio is pri­mar­ily mu­sic. Ma­jor­ity of peo­ple who tune in do it for mu­sic. So, we put a lot of at­ten­tion to it. We test each and ev­ery song be­fore air­ing it. We con­duct AMT re­search to un­der­stand the taste and pref­er­ence of the city.

Sec­ondly, it is the RJs. The con­tent of the RJ is mon­i­tored and they are given proper train­ing to de­liver the mes­sage. Con­tent with­out op­ti­mum de­liv­ery is of no use and vice versa.

Lastly, it is the over­all sound of the sta­tion. Ad­ver­tis­ing is also in­for­ma­tion for the lis­tener. So, the kind of ads, their qual­ity, their con­tent, all of it is cru­cial. We want the ad to be creative and hummable. The mes­sage should be de­liv­ered swiftly and clearly.

You have re­vamped the sta­tion in Gu­jarat with a changed con­tent plat­ter, new RJs, and more. What prompted this move? What was the roadmap for the re­vamp?

Gu­jarat is a crit­i­cal mar­ket for us, we look at Gu­jarat in iso­la­tion. It is a vi­brant and dif­fer­ent state and peo­ple carry the essence of their cul­ture with them. They are out­go­ing, ex­posed to the world, and well-trav­elled. They want a com­bi­na­tion of both lo­cal cul­ture and in­ter­na­tional fla­vor.

Gu­jarat is a ma­ture ra­dio mar­ket, pri­vate ra­dio started back in 2001 there. When you’re in a mar­ket for al­most a decade, the pref­er­ences and the choices change. We re­al­ized it and wanted to tap into it. So, we con­ducted a mas­sive re­search across TG and age group on a sam­ple of 2000 peo­ple. We un­der­stood the lis­ten­ers wanted con­tent that was mod­ern and global but also rooted in their cul­ture. They pre­fer en­ter­tain­ment which we call as plug in-plug out for­mat, which is snack­able and doesn’t re­quire long lis­ten­ing

We have re­vamped the sta­tion com­pletely and in­tro­duced new RJ’s and for­mats. Con­ducted mas­sive AMT, tight­ened our playlist, in­tro­duced new sparkler in lo­cal lan­guage. The re­vamp hap­pened in March- April this year, it’s been al­most 6 months now and the re­sponse has been ab­so­lutely fan­tas­tic.

The first and only net­work to play Gu­jarati songs as part of reg­u­lar playlist. The con­stant rise of Gu­jarati film mu­sic and play­outs of Gu­jarati songs at var­i­ous touch points clearly in­di­cated the shift in lis­ten­ers pref­er­ence. From lis­ten­ers and film in­dus­try lauded it as an iconic move.

We cre­ated hu­mour prop­er­ties for the re­gion in Gu­jarati. We roped in Sairam Dave, a very pop­u­lar co­me­dian for a re­gional hu­mour sparkler. Tamara Bhai is a fe­male cen­tric sparkler based on how fe­males gos­sip about their hus­bands. Tamara Bhai is an ex­pres­sion which is spe­cific to this part of the coun­try.

We al­ready had a few shows which are very pop­u­lar, like Zindagi Ex­press, a Gu­jarati story-telling show and is now in its 7th year. It is a sto­ry­telling show hosted by RJ Aarti. She does an ex­cep­tional job, since sto­ry­telling on ra­dio is quite dif­fi­cult. The show has been a fa­vorite among lis­ten­ers.

Not just the con­tent re­vamp, in fact our 360 so­lu­tions team has cre­ated some iconic prop­er­ties which clients have been more than happy to part­ner. To name a few, we did Jal­savaad – The Big­gest Mu­sic and En­ter­tain­ment Fes­ti­val of Ahmed­abad 4 Days, 9 Big Artist and more than 40 thou­sand peo­ple in at­ten­dance. This was the first time some­thing like this was done by any Ra­dio sta­tion in Ahmed­abad.

So ra­dio is not all fun for us. We do se­ri­ous and mean­ing­ful work as well. For in­stance, real es­tate is a ma­jor cat­e­gory in the mar­ket. There is a lot of con­fu­sion in that space. So, we in­vited RERA chief of Gu­jarat and Ma­ha­rash­tra and hosted an event only for the builder fra­ter­nity. More than 300 builders at­tended, mak­ing it a suc­cess.

Any ra­dio sta­tion which is do­ing such kind of ac­tiv­ity is un­heard of. I per­son­ally feel this has been a huge achieve­ment for us.

We did an­other ac­tiv­ity in­volv­ing only women called the ‘pink con­cert.’ It had quizzes, jin­gles, pop­u­lar singers and other ac­tiv­i­ties. We specif­i­cally hosted it in the af­ter­noon as most of our women TG are free at that time frame. It was again a suc­cess with more than 1000 par­tic­i­pants.

How has been the re­sponse to this re­vamp­ing?

We have re­ceived over­whelm­ing re­sponse. Ear­lier, Ra­dio was hav­ing a set for­mat for them. So, when they got a dif­fer­ent fla­vor they were happy and glad. Many film­stars have tweeted and texted, con­grat­u­lat­ing us on pro­mot­ing Gu­jarat and its cul­ture. Like in Ra­jkot, the sta­tion fre­quency is 94.3 and we an­nounce it in the lo­cal lan­guage to es­tab­lish a much deeper con­nect. It has been a huge hit with peo­ple even hav­ing the jin­gle as their ring­tone!

No other chan­nel was do­ing it. We grabbed the op­por­tu­nity, be­came hy­per­local, and as a re­sult our lis­ten­er­ship has shot up.

Is a change in the ad rates in the plan?

Yes. In Ahmed­abad we will in­crease our ad rates by 15% from Novem­ber 1. This is the only way ra­dio can grow. We want to main­tain the ex­pe­ri­ence for the lis­ten­ers, so we will make the con­tent bet­ter, pro­vide con­tent that the cus­tomer wants to con­sume, and an­nu­ally in­crease the rates by 10%-15%. I’m not into mar­ket share. I’m there for the right prod­uct, the right con­tent, charg­ing the right price, be­ing a prof­itable com­pany, and most im­por­tantly be­ing close and con­nected to the lis­tener.

How would you com­pare the pre­vi­ous year with this year?

Last year new rules and reg­u­la­tions came out which took some time to sta­bi­lize the in­dus­try. Ad­ver­tis­ing in­dus­try was go­ing con­ser­va­tive. Grad­u­ally, the sce­nario has changed. Busi­ness has been good and we are look­ing at a promis­ing fu­ture.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from India

© PressReader. All rights reserved.