‘Ac­che Din’ Re­turn to In­dian TV Chan­nels

BARC data for Jan­uary shows 20% in­crease in TV ad vol­umes; media ex­perts feel the scene is likely to im­prove fur­ther with liq­uid­ity cri­sis eas­ing

The Economic Times - - Brands: Creating Desire - Gau­rav.Laghate@ times­group.com

Mum­bai: Tele­vi­sion ad­ver­tise­ments, which plunged as de­mon­eti­sa­tion sucked out cur­rency in cir­cu­la­tion and hit con­sumer sen­ti­ment and thereby sales, are surg­ing again. Com­pared with De­cem­ber 2016 — the im­me­di­ate month af­ter the note ban on Novem­ber 9 — broad­cast­ers wit­nessed a 20% rise in ad­ver­tise­ment vol­umes in Jan­uary.

In fact, to­tal ad in­ser­tions across TV chan­nels in Jan­uary sur­passed that of Novem­ber too, when the de­mon­eti­sa­tion started to have an im­pact on the medium. Ac­cord­ing to data from TV view­er­ship mon­i­tor­ing agency BARC In­dia, ad­ver­tis­ers placed 4.79 mil­lion ads across chan­nels in Jan­uary, com­pared with 3.98 mil­lion in De­cem­ber 2016 and 4.56 mil­lion in Novem­ber.

“There has been a def­i­nite pickup in advertising. Na­tional chan­nels are back to 70-90% of fill rates of pre-de­mon­eti­sa­tion lev­els,” said CVL Srini­vas, CEO-South Asia, GroupM, a media agency con­glom­er­ate.

The de­mon­eti­sa­tion of ₹ 500 and ₹ 1,000 de­nom­i­na­tion notes on Novem­ber 9, 2016, cre­ated a cash crunch which had a casca- The do­mes­tic fast-mov­ing con­sumer goods sec­tor wit­nessed a no­tice­able slow­down in the wake of the sud­den with­drawal of high-value cur­rency notes late last year, as sales growth in value terms de­cel­er­ated from a high of 9.9% in Oc­to­ber to around 3% in the rest of the quar­ter, ac­cord­ing to data put out by con­sumer anal­y­sis firm Kan­tar World­panel. Al­though sales growth for the full De­cem­ber quar­ter was more than last year’s, it was lower than in the pre­ced­ing three quar­ters. Neha Tyagi re­ports...

Oct Nov Novem­ber showed a dras­tic drop in value growth Dec ding im­pact on spend­ing and ad­ver­tis­ers across sec­tors, in­clud­ing FMCG, re­tail, con­sumer goods and au­to­mo­biles, and ad bud­gets wit­nessed sharp cuts.

There was a sud­den and sharp drop in advertising across TV chan­nels in the months of Novem­ber and De­cem­ber af­ter a record break­ing Oc­to­ber. “Oc­to­ber was fan­tas­tic in terms of advertising rev­enues across the in­dus­try. Our Oc­to­ber sales were high­est for any month in the last five years. We were hop­ing that Novem­ber and De­cem­ber would have a rub-off ef­fect, but PM Modi had other plans,” said a top sales ex­ec­u­tive at a broad­cast­ing net­work, be­fore adding that things are im­prov­ing now. How­ever, top hon­chos across media and en­ter­tain­ment in­dus­try feel that though de­mon­eti­sa­tion led to a knee-jerk re­ac­tion from ad­ver­tis­ers, it was a short-term episode. Now, with cash crunch eas­ing, con­sumers have started spend­ing again, lead­ing to im­proved sen­ti­ment and in­creased advertising.

“Things are al­ready look­ing bet­ter. We are see­ing im­prove­ments in ad vol­umes Jan-Mar Apr-June July-Sept Oct-Dec Af­ter showing a healthy growth in the first three quar­ters of 2016, growth slowed in the last quar­ter due to de­mon­eti­sa­tion. Novem­ber and De­cem­ber pulled down the growth for whole of Q4 2016 month on month. Jan­uary was bet­ter than De­cem­ber; Fe­bru­ary is look­ing bet­ter than Jan­uary. I feel there will be a surge in advertising in March,” said Ashish Se­h­gal, COO at Zee Un­i­me­dia, which over­sees ad sales for the ZEE Group’s en­ter­tain­ment, news and print ver­ti­cals.

Srini­vas of GroupM echoes the sen­ti­ment. “While re­gional chan­nels, es­pe­cially in the south, are slow to pick up be­cause of long tail of small and lo­cal ad­ver­tis­ers, na­tional chan­nels are look­ing bet­ter. Over­all busi­ness sen­ti­ment is up and Fe­bru­ary is look­ing bet­ter than Jan­uary.”

In­ci­den­tally, broad­cast­ers, in their bid to com­bat the de­crease in advertising, had gone on an over­drive to give free­bies to ad­ver­tis­ers.

Some chan­nels in Hindi GEC (gen­eral en­ter­tain­ment chan­nels) cat­e­gory re­duced rates to get more ads. How­ever, ex­perts said, ma­jor net­works did not give any dis­counts, but of­fered some free­bies to ad­ver­tis­ers who stood with them in test­ing times. “These of­fers will be with­drawn once vol­ume comes back,” Se­h­gal said.

But some ex­ec­u­tives are still watch­ing the sit­u­a­tion un­fold cau­tiously. “I will wait an­other month be­fore pop­ping the cham­pagne,” said the broad­cast­ing net­work sales ex­ec­u­tive quoted ear­lier.

Top media hon­chos feel that though the note ban led to knee jerk re­ac­tion from ad­ver­tis­ers, it was a short term episode

CEO-South Asia at GroupM Ad in­ser­tions % Change (MoM) Source: BARC In­dia, All In­dia, All chan­nels COO at Zee Un­i­me­dia

There has been a def­i­nite pickup in advertising. Na­tional chan­nels are back to 70-90% of fill rates of pre­de­mon­eti­sa­tion CVL SRINI­VAS OCT-16 NOV-16 DEC-16 Things are al­ready look­ing bet­ter. Month on month we are see­ing im­prove­ments in ad vol­ume. Jan­uary was bet­ter than De­cem­ber; Fe­bru­ary is look­ing bet­ter than Jan­uary and I feel there will be a surge in advertising in March ASHISH SE­H­GAL JAN-17

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