Industry Leaders, Interviews, Special Reports

HOT 100 – Radio Broadcasters – Prashant Panday, MD and CEO, Entertainment Network (India) Ltd

Competition in the radio broadcasting space is about to get rife in 2016 as 100 new FM stations are expected to come up, taking the total number to …


Competition in the radio broadcasting space is about to get rife in 2016 as 100 new FM stations are expected to come up, taking the total number to around 345. Entertainment Network India Ltd (ENIL), which won 17 frequencies in the recent frequency auction in Phase 3 of radio privatization, is gearing up to deal with this competition with its own robust strategy.

2016 will be a year of launches by this Times Group-owned radio company too, as it plans to roll out several new stations. Seven of these will be in new cities where it will introduce its popular Radio Mirchi brand.

Since it bagged licenses in 10 towns where it already has a presence, ENIL will launch a second radio brand there, so it can better capture audience attention with two networks in the same city. In some cities like Hyderabad, ENIL has three frequencies, which gives it better negotiating power with advertisers.

Starting from the ground up in smaller towns comes at a huge marketing cost and Prashant Panday knows that. Hence, ENIL has accounted for a marketing budget to ensure the masses register its presence in these new markets. He said recently, “We have provided more than INR 20 crore for advertisement, which in percentage terms could be very high. But these are startup marketing costs. I think that is the push that you need to give to the brand in a new city that you launch. More importantly, we are also going to be stepping up marketing on the core Mirchi brand.”

He believes this investment will pay off because radio has been doing well in the last three years and it is his opinion that whenever the economy slows down, this medium tends to do better as advertisers spend more on promotions, rather than spend on core brand building.

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