Radio City wants to go 'more local'. The station has rolled out a new tagline for its channels that says this explicitly: ‘Rag Rag Mein Radio City’ (In each corner there’s Radio City). The new positioning was rolled out with a campaign that went on air two weeks ago.
Explaining the shift in conversation with Campaign India, Abraham Thomas, CEO, Radio City, said, “'FM bole toh Radio City' was good, but we wanted to take the overall brand to the next level. We have kind of re-positioned our whole network to take it to the next level. Radio is a local medium. Already, our channels had a city in the name. We have 20 stations of Radio City, and will be launching 11 more. There are eight more under the banner of Radio Mantra. With this 'Rag Rag Mein' initiative we are going as micro-local as we can. That’s the idea behind the new tagline.”
He added, “Each city has a different rationale for the same tagline. We have a new station jingle – 20 versions, one for each station. We have different singers who have sung each jingle. The whole campaign is about evoking that city’s pride. It’s actually not just a campaign, it’s the essence of the brand. We’ll see a lot of specific features (for each city). We’re launching a property – City ke kone kone, where we are breaking the city into smaller parts. All markets will have this. Everything on air will reflect this.”
The 'local' factor increases with more local shows. Thomas explains, “We have a popular property launched in Gujarat – Radio City Jokes Studio. We get local comedians to come on air and do something around comedy. It’s for existing talent and new talent. It’s a rage in Gujarat and is going national. Similarly, in music we have a Radio City concert for local musicians doing covers. There’s also an annual awards platform for these people.”
Thomas, who took over as CEO in November 2015, explains that this is just one of the initiatives the network is undertaking to go to 'the next level'. Another was the launch of Audacity in January this year, a specialist in-house radio creative shop.
He explains, “We have done a series of things and Audacity is one of them. It has raised the bar on creativity in radio. We are doing a lot of interesting work through this and created quite a few creative campaigns. We have created musicals and ideas just beyond the logos. “
He added, “Now two things have happened. Local advertisers have grown with sectors like education and real estate investing heavily. National brands are also seeing the power of local, and they have local campaigns running on radio. We’ve realised that the level of innovation in radio have plateaued. Everyone’s doing the same. And so we needed something creative. The other constraint we’ve seen is that most agency people are strong in television and think about it. We put together a bunch of dedicated people. These guys understand radio, they’re from the medium. We’re using this to raise the bar. We’re working with a lot of agencies. They see this as an opportunity also. We’re doing some great work here.”
Among other changes, the station, which is owned by the Jagran Group, has launched 'improved' mobile apps.
(Amended at 12.30 hrs on 4 May 2016 to reflect that Radio City will be launching 11 more stations under the next phase of FM expansion and not eight as published. The error is regretted.)