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Jitendranath Patri
Jitendranath Patri
Lead Marketing, Central & Brand Factory
Currently Jitendranath is handling the marketing for- Central & Brand Factory in Future Group. more>>
I heard you on the wireless back in fifty two
lying awake intent at tuning in on you.
If I was young it didnt stop you coming through.

They took the credit for your second symphony.
Rewritten by machine on new technology,
And now I understand the problems you can see.

I met your children

what did you tell them?
Video killed the radio star.
Video killed the radio star.

Pictures came and broke your heart.

And now we meet in an abandoned studio.
We hear the playback and it seems so long ago.
And you remember the jingles used to go.

You were the first one.

You were the last one.

Video killed the radio star.
Video killed the radio star.
In my mind and in my car, we cant rewind weve gone too far
Oh-a-aho oh,
Oh-a-aho oh

Video killed the radio star.
Video killed the radio star.
In my mind and in my car, we cant rewind weve gone too far.
Pictures came and broke your heart
Put down the blame on VCR!!!

Video killed the radio star. (You are a radio star.) 

Many of you who read this might wonder the reason for the above. I chanced upon this song sometime ago while searching for information on the web. This song I think is about 30 or more years old. I tried to decipher the code and found out that these lyrics had profound meaning attached.

The Television era brought with it a new phase of entertainment and viewing. This harbored well for consumers and marketers alike. Rather than just listen people could actually see and hear. This meant that radio listenership dropped. Barring a few international Short Wave Stations – Radio overall had its task cut out. I am not going to get into details and hence radio has had its second birth – what with the popularity of FM Radio.

Over the years Television has ruled the eyeball space. Many of us spend a few hours a week basking in its diverse content. From an India perspective over the last 12 to 15 years has seen a proliferation of channels – both indigenous and foreign. These channels offer viewers content that is regional, National and International - from programs for kids, to soaps, news, movies, travel, sports and more. During this phase the concept of a household owning more than one TV also took shape.

In this entire explosion of content, I realized something was amiss. Why was I, practically every evening of whenever I needed to view something, turning to YouTube and sites of a similar genre. To view my favorite shows! Why wasnt I watching TV? Well, the fight for the remote seemed to be definitely a thing of the past. 

I dug deep and went up to a few of my media friends. What they shared with me – hit me in the gut. 

YouTube was up there – competing with the best channels for eye ball space. And being an amalgamation it did have an advantage. It complimented the consumption of TV and was free of those ad breaks.

If one looks at the proliferation of digital in India – the phenomena is not restricted to the Urban population alone. Smaller towns and rural populace have started to embrace this new concept. With mobile penetration, usage and affordability of internet on mobile – this trend comes as no surprise.

What does this trend hold for the future?

The same content which was available on a PC is now accessible on multiple devices. Which means that time spent on TV has started to reduce – at least amongst the urban populace. This means that at a given point of time – say even during prime time – the TV could have just one viewer. With others glued on to other devices. 

Big screen entertainment in your pocket

Today – many households have done away with the concept of a 2nd TV. Tablets and laptops have now become popular viewing devices - where one can watch content that is personal and at one’s pace and space.

Smart-phone proliferation on the rise – the small screen- in reality – is actually getting more popular. 
147 million mobile internet users
919 million subscribers so far and the count is rising
12 million 3G users and 
1 million pieces of Tablets sold
Over 7.4 Million viewers of Mobile TV
Over 1 Million views a day on YouTube mobile 
Vu-Clip, the leader in mobile video with over 1.5 million unique users/day

The era of the ‘small screen’ is truly here to stay. 

TV Killed the radio star?

This brings me back to the title of the article. TV killed the radio star. More and more consumers embracing digital as a religion and with the rise of YouTube and others as an access point for video content – the growth and penetration of TVs will reduce. 

Manufacturers have already recognized this trend and have started packing the TVs with a lot more features. Internet accessibility; 3D TVs, LCD to LED and what not – the TVs of the future may actually start looking like a giant sized tablet or a smart-phone.

Will the TV get killed? No – big screen entertainment will remain but may adapt itself to the needs of the day. The number of people relying on big screen may come down. Content will become more specialized; segmented and pay-per-view.

In all of this change – the consumer is sure to benefit - since she and he is queen and king.  A situation like this also brings with it challenges and opportunities. While it is easy to list down the challenges – let me focus on the opportunities.

Marketers and media professionals – the opportunity that exists

The advantage of being connected and wired (not in the literal sense) to the Internet means that a marketer has access to data. 

Data that throws insights into both demo and psycho profiles:-
Who is the target user; 
her or his mobile usage, 
internet usage, 
content preferred, 
websites preferred, 
What does she or he use the digital space for…-> purchase, information collection, travel related…
How is the access done – via tablet, pc, laptop, mobile phone…
How often in a day
Recency; Frequency;

The list can be endless and frightening. 

This is where the importance of specialized analytics and agencies will come into play. These agencies and professionals will need to have the knack of slicing and dicing the data and come up with insights that will be relevant to different marketers.

Media professionals, Creative agencies, marketers, technology experts, analysts – all will need to adapt a collaborative approach to derive and use these insights. While the data load will be immense – marketers must focus on the data sets that will make a difference.

The key word here will be SEGMENTATION!

Choosing the right segments and mapping it to one’s customer profile will play a critical part in the marketing and media mix. 
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