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Vinish Joshi, General Manager, MediaCom

The Zee News initiative ‘For The Sake of News’ advances further with alarming issues including the loss of brand equity and revenue of Hindi Channels that deviate from core proposition. Vinish Joshi of MediaCom hits to the point while sharing his views for the sake of news. Read the full interview.

Q) What are the parameters you follow to plan for Hindi news channels these days?

There is very little difference in the performance of the top two or three Hindi news channels. Planning parameters followed are TVR, Reach, Clutter Index & CPRP. On the qualitative side credible and differentiated content is important. Q) What differences do you find if we compare today’s exercise with the time before 5 years?

Audience loyalty of Hindi news channels has eroded over time with hardly any content differentiation. Q) Do you see any shift in advertisers’ mindset due to the current situation in the Hindi news channels that are using fillers to gain TRPs while saving content generation cost?

Yes. As increasingly Hindi News channels are in business of creating news instead of reporting , the content is at times loud and frivolous and Hindi news channels sensationalize issues and chase trivial developments in order to gain TRPs.

With the hyper fragmentation and too many ‘me-too’ Hindi news channels what is differentiating the good from the others is content and we as media consultants value the audience loyalty of a channel very much. Even the advertisers look for loyal viewers so that their communication has higher probability of connecting with the audience.

Q) Can it be said that media spend would have been many fold better if the channels would have improved with the time rather than diluting news content?

Certainly content rules and is the most important component of news. It is not about whether there should be a cinema story in the news bulletin or not, but cutting and pasting general entertainment content on news channels to get short term attention, buzz and viewership on the platform without adding any value to the information requirements of the people will impact viewership and spends in long term Q) How much will the non-news content or frivolous content impact the brand value of a channel?

Role of a News channel is to report news and not create news.  Any deviation from the core content by showing Non-news /frivolous content will impact the equity of the news channels.

Q) If you predict the news channels coming back on their track, what is the one factor you see behind this?

Credible  Content.

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