Media360 India kicked off with a panel discussion about content and video featuring Rajeshree Naik, co-founder and director of Ping Network, and Tanmay Bhat, co-founder of AIB. The discussion was moderated by Kartik Nagarajan, national director, content and social media, with GroupM.
Bhat set out a clarion call to big brands that put up branded content on their social channels.
He said, "A brand gets a digital agency to write a script and then shares it on its social-media channels. The top message to that video is someone writing ‘my car isn’t working or broke down’. No one cares about the brand’s page. This same video could do way better had it gone on the creator’s page instead! People head to those channels to view such content, and the work on that page makes so much sense for the brand."
Prior to this the panel discussed how young India consumes 'everything' on the internet.
Bhat said, "The new generation doesn't care about television. They believe in no-appointment viewing. I recently met a team from Snapchat. They explained their Maps feature [which shows where people on your friend list are at the moment] and how that is the way of the future. Today's generation is always on and showing what they’re doing. Game Of Thrones set the culture. India is moving away from TV. For now it’s young India who are doing that, but Bharat will soon follow."
Naik echoed Bhat's sentiments and added, "In fact mobile has moved from the 18-25 age group to everyone. Women in their mid 30s and 40s are also always on their phones."
Naik had a cause of concern for niche television channels. She said, "Some niche channels sell advertisements extremely cheap. So when this comes up, brand managers start calculating reach and go for television. The rates brands get from television is shocking and I wonder whether it’s even sustainable for TV channels to be so cheap!"
Keeping the discussion going on news channels, Bhat explained how brands are still smitten by traditional media.
"I can’t understand English news channels. Our (YouTube) channel has more viewers than all the English channels combined, but yet each of those English channels have four floors of offices and people working for them. A brand will end up paying 15-20 lakhs more if I do a show for 300 people in a theatre compared to a pre-launch show on digital!"
Talking about rural and how content can be curated for such markets, Naik believes video has a big role to play as not everyone in those markets can or wants to read.
Bhat added, "After Jio was rolled out (at affordable prices) I thought it would empower India, specially rural India. But porn views increased in India by 72 per cent!"
Talking about a content company he admires, Bhat said, "I have immense respect for Buzzfeed New York. They have figured ways of making money from consumers and selling stuff such as emoji key chains. They’re setting trends and not following them. The last content trend set here in india was TVF’s series."
On the topic of series, Naik surmised, "We are seeing 'series' as a buzzword and brands wanting to do them. I’m not sure how a brand can justify rates for these series."