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Colors Gujarati sees viewership growth after change in positioning

MUMBAI: Viacom18’s Colors Gujarati has changed its positioning from being a light-hearted family entertainment channel to a full-fledged Gujarati GEC with a mix of fiction and non-fiction content.

This change in positioning, which began in April 2015, has brought rich dividends for the channel as it has led to 46% increase in viewership, says Viacom18 EVP and project head, regional channels Colors Marathi and Colors Gujarati, Anuj Poddar.

While the channel also runs light-hearted shows, it has increased fiction content in the primetime hours. Its primetime includes seven shows including light-hearted drama, cookery, food, spiritual and a non-fiction game show. Its programming stretches from Monday to Saturday, 6.30 to 10 pm.

Anuj-Poddar---inside“We started off as a light-hearted entertainment channel, but we found limited appeal for that. People liked light-hearted content but they don’t want only that. As GEC audience, they want mix content. Now we have started offering a mix of content for more than six months now,” Poddar told TelevisionPost.com.

“We started the year with 23% share among Gujarati channels. Our share now is 46%, which is almost half of the Gujarati-language market. We are double of the next channel,” he asserted.

The primetime weekday shows on the channel include ‘Flavours of Gujarat’, ‘Food Thi Gujarati’, ‘Suri’, ‘Kumkum Na Pagla Padya’, ‘Shukra Mangal’, ‘Preet Piyu ane Pannaben’ and ‘Daily Bonus’. It also airs ‘Rasoi Show’ in the afternoon time-band.

The crown jewel for the channel is ‘Suri’. The show is to Colors Gujarati what ‘Balika Vadhu’ is to Hindi GEC Colors. “’Suri’ is doing really well for us like ‘Balika Vadhu’ is for Colors. On the back of that one show, the channel is doing well. The other shows are also working well, but ‘Suri’ has become our flagship property,” he stated.

Poddar said that the move towards becoming a full-fledged Gujarati GEC was a gradual one. “We started that gradually with two shows. Then we launched two more shows, so now it has become a full mixed content. That’s working well for us. The success in ratings is happening on back of that. We have light-hearted content, but we have moved away from light-hearted channel positioning,” he noted.

With the increase in viewership, the channel is witnessing growth in advertising as well. “In the last three months, we have seen good traction from advertisers. While conventional advertisers like FMCG are there, categories like automobile and financial services have also hopped on to the channel,” he said.

The aim is to grow the advertiser base further. Poddar is confident that the channel will see more traction from advertiser in the current financial year.

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