Ajita Shashidhar

Mumbai, March 13

Taking ahead its positioning as a middle class channel, SAB is planning to allocate close to 15 per cent of its marketing and advertising budget for promotional activities in smaller markets.

Mr Vikas Bahl, Business Head, SAB, said that the channel has been doing on-ground activities in smaller markets in spurts, but now plans to do it in a more organised way.

Live programmes

"We got poets who performed in our show

Wah Wah

, to perform live on the local cable networks in many small markets. Similarly, we also organised interactions with the actors of our show

Mahi Ve

, in various towns in Punjab, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh."

Mr Bahl said that the channel is also looking at doing on ground activities in those markets, which are not monitored by TAM. These are markets with a population of less than a lakh.

"These are markets which our advertisers are looking at in a big way. And as broadcasters we also feel that there is a lot of potential, as people have the spending power to invest on pay viewing."

The channel is also planning to piggyback on FMCG and consumer durable brands that have a good network in smaller markets, to reach these areas.

Healthy growth

SAB, according to Mr Bahl, has been witnessing a healthy growth. "The overall primetime rating of the channel has gone up to 15 points from 7 points in the last four-five months. Our shows such as

Indian Idol Taka Tak

and

Yes Boss

have also received good TVRs."

Keeping in mind its middle class positioning and its focus on markets which are quite new to cable and satellite television, Mr Bahl said that the channel may look at airing shows which have been aired on Sony.

"There are many shows on Sony which I am sure many viewers won't mind seeing again on SAB."

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated March 14, 2006)
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