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Good content will market itself, says Turner’s Krishna Desai

MUMBAI: While marketing a show is important, the content itself is a powerful marketing tool, observed Turner International India executive director and network head – kids Krishna Desai during a panel discussion at FICCI Frames 2014.

Desai further added that the best way to market a property is to keep refreshing it from time to time and the content will market itself. He also stated that marketing does play an important role in making a show successful.

Even if a channel has a strong franchise, it should develop a strong content pipeline to keep the ball rolling as nobody knows what the future holds, he said during the session ‘Animation: Strategies behind Marketing of Successful Properties’.

Doing business in India is tough particularly if you are running a kids channel since the genre garners only three per cent of ad revenue despite having the third biggest share of viewership, he averred.

He also added that both his channels, Pogo and Cartoon Network, are genre leaders. Pogo, which  completed 10 years in India, is the No. 1 channel while Cartoon Network, which completes 20 years next year, is the No. 2 channel.

The key to success is having great stories and characters, said Desai, adding, “We might have do vast research, have great writers and animators, but the property may or may not work so we need to have faith in the property.”

He gave the example of popular local franchises like ‘Chhota Bheem’, ‘Roll No. 21’, and ‘Stanley Chakra’ due to collaboration between creators and the broadcaster.

Linear TV, according to Desai, is here to exist while emerging platforms will complement rather than compete with the traditional platforms.

Green Gold Animation MD Rajiv Chilaka said that results will follow from things done in a simple manner. He said ‘Chhota Bheem’s success was a testament to getting the basics right.

Talking about ‘Chhota Bheem’ property, Chilaka said that the property has become hugely popular not just on television but outside television too. The proof of that are the 50 licensing deals that the company has done with different companies.

Stating that ‘Chhota Bheem’ branded products are sold in 3,000 SKUs, Chilaka revealed that based on this animation property Green Gold has spun off new characters which include Mighty Raju and Arjun, revealed.

Graphic India founder Sharad Devarajan informed that when the company works on a character, it attempts to position it as a global character. This, he said, helps in taking the character to international markets.

To buttress his point, Devarajan said that Mark Canton, the producer of ‘300: Rise of An Empire’ and ‘The Immortals’, will be developing and producing a live-action feature film based on its superhero property, ‘The Sadhu’.

He also noted that the Indian characters and superheroes have so far remained limited and have not travelled abroad despite the opportunity.