The TV news industry in India is growing rapidly. The TV audience is willing to explore other platforms too. The thought process has begun and it will take the TV news industry graph on an upward spiral. This was the gist of the 13th Exchange4media conclave held in Mumbai on 25 November. NewsX and The Sunday Guardian presented the conclave in collaboration with the Zee Group. The theme of the conclave was “Shifting Media Mindset and Growth Path Ahead”.
Several eminent luminaries from media and advertising discussed the news industry’s growth path at the conclave. They also focused on the media’s evolution and willingness to change, facilitated by support from the government, advertising agencies, and marketers.
NewsX Managing Director Kartikeya Sharma said that the consumption of news had changed. News consumers wanted to be a part of the news making process. He was among the panellists who discussed communication planning and convergence of media with an emphasis on using multiple platforms effectively. Sanjoy Chakrabarty, Managing Partner of ZenithOptimedia, chaired the panel. Ashish Bhasin, Chairman India and CEO South East Asia, Aegis Group, Neeraj Roy, MD and CEO, Hungama Digital and Sam Balsara, Chairman and MD, Madison World were the other panellists.
Sharma pointed that the show “Speak Out India,” which is based on interactivity is helping them reach people from various platforms. “How we make the transition across platforms seamless is critical. We go out after younger audience since they will stay with us longer — they are open to new technology. So, it is up to us to be the link between advertisers, agencies and consumers.” He insisted that the generation between the age group of 25 and 44 had been a witness to the change in TV news format and the audience was willing to experiment with different platforms as well.
Balsara suggested that there should be one media planner in charge of all the media processes, who possesses the requisite knowledge and skills, and the mental faculty to look at multiple screens. Bhasin commented that it was unfortunate that there was no provision to train talent on an ongoing basis. Roy predicted that video would become like air as we move from 2G to 4G. “There will be a tremendous consumption of content,” he said.
Journalist Arnab Goswami said that a big wave was going to come in the Indian TV news industry. He delivered the keynote address. “The media industry seeks your attention, mind space, time and recall. Nowhere is the industry changing as fast; no country is witnessing such growth. When the digital revolution comes people will not watch a serial on their phone, they will watch news. The news category will enjoy leadership.”
Dominic Proctor, President of Group M Worldwide, in a special question and answer session with Anurag Batra, Chairman and Editor-in-chief of Exchange4media group, said that not enough leadership was emerging from India. “This is a challenge as India is still a follower and not the leader, as far as new thought processes are concerned.”
Vikram Sakhuja, Global CEO, Maxus noted that the Indian media landscape was still unsure of how to use digital. He was speaking on the topic “Through The Looking Glass: A New Media Mindset”. He insisted that it was necessary for media agencies to realise that digital has to be viewed as an ecosystem of its own, rather than as an add-on to traditional media. “There is a huge scope for change. A lot of money is moving into digital from other media — be it print or television,” he observed.