Zee Biskope, a Bhojpuri movie channel from the house of Zeel, recently bagged 13 medals across categories at the 10th ACEF Global Customer Engagement Award. They received recognition as the Most-Admired Television Channel for Customer Engagement and for their campaigns such as Talent Camera Action, Birthday Lahariya, among others.
In the backdrop of this victory, BestMediaInfo.com caught up with Samrat Ghosh, Cluster Head East, Zeel and Amarpreet Singh Saini, Business Head, Zee Biskope and Big Ganga.
“It is extremely motivating to make a clean sweep at an international forum. In fact, this is a never-before-seen feat in the category. When these initiatives receive awards, it’s an endorsement of what we believe in Zeel at being native to the region that we cater to and of our firm conviction about Bhojpuri deserving the stature that is due to it,” said Saini.
This year, the channel proposes to bring a slew of novel content with non-fiction comedy shows, events, and originals in Bhojpuri movie space.
“Zee Biskope has attempted to be differentiated and curated in a category that is largely commoditised so far. We intend to strengthen this approach. The consumer today is seeking much deeper connection and excitement from their entertainment as the environment is more stressed than before. Thus, to satiate this need, we are and would be bringing more new and exciting offerings this year,” said Ghosh.
To further deepen the equity among its viewers, they will feature repeats of some of the most loved initiatives as well. Once the pandemic situation improves, they will also resume on-ground connection.
“Zee Biskope is bringing a calendar full of topical festivals, original shows, original movies, and hitherto unexplored movie bands in the category along with a slew of engagement initiatives ranging from the comeback of the most loved ones to clutter-breaking new spaces of excitement. With a range of platters to choose from, we are witnessing a very positive response in the market,” Saini said.
According to BARC’s latest update, Zee Biskope commands the highest market share of 25% in the Bhojpuri TV category.
“TV penetration has been highest in Bihar and Jharkhand as per the latest BARC universe update and Zee Biskope emerged as a leader in the category. Zee Biskope aims at making the brand accessible where viewers could reach out and feel the affinity, thereby developing brand love,” Saini said.
On advertising, Ghosh said they will continue to drive their same value-driven approach in the coming year as well.
“In the post-pandemic environment, advertisers are looking at deeper engagement and purposeful association for their brands. Zee Biskope has been successful in providing the same through its topical, thematic and consumer centric initiatives on as well as off air. We will continue the same approach,” he said.
Launched in December 2019, Zee Biskope has grown to be a one-stop destination for Bhojpuri entertainment. The channel led category viewership with the two-day-long Holi celebrations, including a World Television Premiere and a Holi special event. It’s also No.1 channel in the category in Q1 YTD (3 wks) with 25% share in 2+.
“Zee Biskope has maintained its dominant leadership position since launch. Though the market has gone through ups and downs firstly due to pandemic and then due to the comeback of FTA Hindi channels on Free Dish, yet the brand has led strong viewership on the back of content and engagement innovations and initiatives,” said Saini.
Despite the rise in OTT viewership, Saini is confident that TV viewership continues to be the dominant trend. He said with people being homebound again, overall viewership is expected to surge and TV will remain the main source of entertainment for the families.
“As per the latest BARC Universe update, the overall TV HH has increased by 23% and individual viewer base by 23.4%. Bihar and Jharkhand are among the highest TV base increase markets with 23% rise in TV HH (compared to 2018). Post pandemic too, the highest viewership jump has been in TV viewing with Bihar and Jharkhand being one of the highest increase markets,” he said.
The second wave of the pandemic has brought in negative sentiment in the country and has significantly impacted the consumer mindset.
“There are tectonic shifts in their consumption patterns as well as their gratification drivers. It has taught the entertainment industry to re-invent itself to cater to this new need state. At Zee Biskope, repurposing and reengineering of content has been the mainstay of serving this new consumer appetite. We have always and will continue to extend our content offering beyond movies in an attempt to find new grounds of movie gratification,” said Ghosh.
Saini said that during this time, they expect movie viewership to witness an upswing.
“NPT viewership surged exponentially last year and we are seeing early signs of the same this year as well. Zee Biskope will ensure family-inclusive content through various film festivals, original shows, differentiated weekend new bands and innovations in early morning devotional bands; all curated to cater to family viewership than individual drive,” he said.