Red FM won the maximum number of awards at the Indian Excellence in Radio Awards 2008. The awards were a part of the India Radio Forum held in Mumbai on May 30.
Red FM won awards in nine categories including best programming, best interactive idea, best community service, RJ of the year – Hindi, best radio promo for a single spot, best use of advertisement, best on ground activation by an FM Station, excellence in communication awards and best FM brand. Radio Mirchi won four awards for best radio promo for Kannada, Bengali and Hindi languages and RJ of the year – Bengali.
Big FM won awards for best programming show– Telugu, RJ of the year – Telugu, and best radio promo – Tamil. Radio One Kannada won an award for best programming category and RJ of the year categories. Radio City won in the best cross platform communication and excellence in new media initiative.
Various issues and challenges facing the radio industry were discussed at the forum.
The India CEO panel discussion was moderated by Atul Phadnis of Media E2E. Apurva Purohit from Radio City expressed her satisfaction about the Association of Radio Operators of India (AROI) being set up. She also hoped that Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) and the ministry would now mull over the issues of operating multiple frequencies in a city and also of allowing news and current affairs on radio. Prashant Panday of Radio Mirchi praised TRAI’s recommendations on making a station profitable by going into districts. M Sebastian of WorldSpace Satellite Radio said that radio needs to be viewed as a category. He also said that policies should be same for satellite, FM and community radio.
Another topic of concern was how to make radio more profitable by looking at advertising and non-advertising revenue. Vanita Kohli-Khandekar, an independent media consultant and writer, moderated the session. Pallavi Burman of Fever 104 FM said that there was a need to look beyond space selling in radio. She said that on-ground events and cross-media packaging need to be implemented. Dnyanada Chaudhari of HUL said, “For us, the effectiveness of our advertising money is crucial and, therefore, what you bring to our table as well.” Punitha Arumugam of Madison Media said that traditional advertising does matter but cost effectiveness is what will make the difference. She also added that the radio stations need to develop the non-primetime bands and monetize them.