Rahul Namjoshi, COO, MY FM – DB Corp sheds light on the initiative, the current situation of the radio industry, and the future of the medium amidst the ongoing pandemic.
Rahul Namjoshi, COO, MY FM from Dainik Bhaskar group takes us through the latest initiative from the brand. He puts forth that FY20 wasn’t up to the mark for the radio industry. And even though these are unprecedented times, according to the leader, radio remains the go-to option from the media channels.
With ‘Bina Mile Saath Ladein’ & initiatives by the RJs, MY FM attempts ensuring that there is never a dull moment with their curated music. Namdoshi further sheds light on ad spends, the radio industry and its’ future amidst the ongoing pandemic.
With the impact of COVID-19 on the entire A & M sector, how have things been for the radio industry? In which areas have you seen the strongest impact? With brands re-evaluating their budgets & marketing strategy, how are radio Ad-Spends impacted?
Uncertainty continues. No one has the idea till when. Currently, only topical advertising is being seen so far. So, no sector per se can be pointed out. Yes, some cancellations have happened and some pre-planned campaigns have been dropped, but advertising will revive once the shops open.
How has FY20 been for radio so far in terms of revenue? As per the FICCI Report, Radio ads still occupy 3-4% of media share.
FY20 wasn’t up to the mark; we have not met our own expectations. These are unprecedented times; we will be able to talk about the upcoming quarter when normalcy returns.
What is the content strategy going to be like for MyFM during this time? What are the content-consumption patterns observed during this time?
Since the media is all the more cautious to not create panic, we as a radio network are on our toes to provide 100 % reliable information to our listeners.
The current situation, apart from having tangible losses, is taking a mental toll on everybody’s lives as well. To counter this, we have made sure there is no compromise on entertainment. Since out of home listening right now is nil practically, our content is designed around the new pattern of radio consumption. Also, since people are tuning-in more, the percentage of people listening to the radio more than an hour daily has increased drastically.
My FM recently launched ‘Bina Milein Sath Ladein’ in support of social distancing during COVID-19. What does the campaign entail?
Following our Prime Minister’s address to various RJs, where he even appreciated our brand philosophy of spreading positivity through our promise ‘Aaj Kuch Acha Sunte Hain’, we started our special on-air and digital initiative ‘Bina Mile Sath Laden’ to promote social distancing. The initiative takes a holistic approach involving information, motivation, updates and a whole lot of entertainment.
Also, I don’t consider this a tapping on an opportunity but a learning opportunity instead; not only for us but for our listeners and advertisers alike.
These are unfortunate times and the world demands us to stand together as one.
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What is your social media strategy at this time? What do you think works? How do you calculate ROI for this medium?
Our social media handles were already active with some of our RJs having their fan base in millions. With ‘Bina Mile Sath laden’, we collaborated with a plethora of celebrities from across genres ranging from music, television to yoga experts and life coaches.
The idea is spread positivity through fun, motivation, and information. I think this is what works, when you can understand the need of the hour and respond rather than react.
AROI recently wrote to the government for help. What are your key expectations from the government?
The AROI letter, if accepted, will certainly help radio broadcasters sail through this FY 2020-21. Radio especially did not have a good 2019-20 financial year.
Yes, news on radio policy needs to be re-looked at, but looking at the current scenario we would rather want them to focus on the letter sent by AROI and help the Radio fraternity to tide over through this difficult situation.
Still, with the absence of a credible measurement system for radio, how do you combat the challenge of measuring listeners/audiences on your platform?
I seriously believe that some scientific approach needs to be present for tapping Radio Listenership. I think relying on just one approach is always dangerous. You have to look at all the parameters for calculating the correct data. That being said, I support the initiative of having an industry standard for measurement. Doing the same for print and TV is comparatively easy as there is a lot of appointment viewing and physical circulations going around. Radio, as a category is passive and happens throughout the day at multiple touch-points.