A detailed panel discussion threw light on the consumption pattern, monetisation and marketing of kids’ content on digital
BestMediaInfo Bureau | Mumbai | March 31, 2016
On the inaugural day of FICCI Frames 2016, an interesting discussion delved into the pace at which children are embracing the digital medium and the monetisation and content quality aspect of it.
Moderated by AmitAgarwal, Founder, Whizkidz Media, the session saw participation from some of the major players in the kids genre including Gaurav Gandhi, COO, Viacom18 Digital Ventures; VinothChandar, CEO, Chu Chu TV; ShravanKumaran and ShivamKumaran, Co-founders, Godimensions; and Manish Agarwal, CEO, Nazara Technologies.
The Kumaran brothers are studying in Class 9 and are probably the youngest entrepreneurs in the digital space. The company Godimensions deals in games for children. The panel majorly talked about the need to focus on content for the kids and how the consumption of content is seeing exponential increase for the kid-centric stuff.
Agarwalposed serious questions to the panelists including on monetisation and marketing plans and the importance of content quality. He also introduced the increase in content consumption by pointing out how today, about 40 out of top 100 YouTube channels are kid-centric, against 2-3 a couple of years back. The skew towards language feeds was also pointed out by Agarwal, during the session.
Here are the panelists’ views on the topic:
Gaurav Gandhi, COO, Viacom18 Digital Ventures:
“We are probably the only large mediahouse to have huge kids content and monetisation is yet another thing. My five-year-old doesn't understand why a certain programme cannot be watched on TV in her preferable time. This is how children today are thinking and hence, we decided to bring under one roof all the characters from the three major kids broadcasters in the country – Disney, Turner and us. Hence, Voot Kids has over 7,000 hours of content with over 90 characters. In addition to this, it is easier to sell a character to an advertiser proposing a multimedia platform. We are reaching them through TV, outreach exercises at schools and places like Kidzania just add up.
“The CPMs are very low in India and that's how creators in India too are making content in foreign languages, pitching it in international markets with better CPMs. Even monetisation of TV is very low for kids, despite being the third largest genre in terms of viewership – the advertising for the genre is Rs 300 crore out of a total Rs 20,000 crore. With the increase in the digital content consumption, it is possible that we see Voot Kids being an independent application in roughly a year.”
Vinoth Chandar, CEO, ChuChu TV:
“It was about two and a half to three years ago when I first uploaded an animated video of Chubby Cheeks since it was my daughter’s favourite rhyme. To my surprise, it got over three lakh views in a mere two days and that is when I realised the power of random kids content. Today, we have over 500 million views and 500,000 subscribers to Chu Chu TV’s YouTube channel. One thing that I can vouch for is that the kids’ viewership is completely organic which is directly proportional to the kind and quality of content. What do we want in future? We want to offer more games, partner with Gaurav for both content and distribution and we just want to go on making good content.”
Shravan Kumaran and Shivam Kumaran, Co-founders, Godimensions:
“We were inspired by many people including our parents, Bill Gates and Steve Jobs(smile). We loved to make apps and we wanted to create something for children, since we understand that phase better being closer to it. The biggest hurdle that we faced while starting off three years ago was to find out good online content to read. Like now, there's still a lot of online reading material, but back then it was not so. As of today, there are two things which need serious change for the digital content consumption to grow: one is enhancing the quality which will only happen when the creators start getting good monies. Another important part is in the education field soas to make academics related literature more graphical. Kids love colours and graphics can do wonders in ensuring they quickly grab the concepts.”
Manish Agarwal, CEO, Nazara Technologies:
“It has to be understood that while we as adults have a lot going for them on smartphones, starting from calling, texting to Whatsapp,Facebook and Twitter. But kids have just two things – videos and games. But the consumption of just these two formats is huge. I believe that this will grow exponentially. In the next three years, the consumption of content by kids on digital will be much, much higher than that on TV. They can't promise appointment for their favourite content and kids are behaving very effectively to all those visual and voice apps. To those who are launching apps, I will suggest that make it more interactive and full of colours and, yes, define the purpose clearly. I did make an educational game which completely bombed. Kids clearly understand when you are trying to fool around. They are the best judges when it comes to differentiation between entertainment and learning. I had created three more apps around education, but never launched them.”