Media & Resources

It’s Reach over Frequency in TRAI’s ad regulation

May 28, 2012 - While there still seems to be some time before TRAI's (Telecom Regulatory Authority of India) ad regulation that restricts commercial time to 10+2 minutes and asks for a 15-minute gap between two ads comes in play, the industry is divided in two clear pockets on the subject. First – those who believe that the regulation will prove detrimental to television and will squeeze out the smaller players. And second are those who believe that irrespective of the short-term implications of the regulation, it will bring long-term benefits to both, viewers and marketers.

Reach and not frequency focussed media plan

One of the first implications of the new order would mean television demand skewing towards certain channels and properties. "Reduction in ad time will not increase ratings. Once the 15-minute ad gap is in place, content-ad break pattern will become predictable. This will neither enhance viewing experience nor help advertiser in getting incremental ratings. The viewer knows he can come back to the programme after three and half minutes. The additional money the advertiser pays will not get compensated by increase in the slot TVR, which means we would pay Rs 110 for the same number of eyeballs tomorrow that we pay Rs 100 for today," explained Madan Mohapatra, Chief, Marketing, Future Group.

As marketers are unlikely to increase budgets on this count, the likely impact is a more careful selection of channels. "The increased cost of channels will make life difficult for the frequency channels whose selling model itself is based on higher inventories," observed K Raghavendra, General Manager, Marketing Services, Jyothy Laboratories.

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