There’s only one question that Hemal Jhaveri, general manager and executive vice-president of Channel V, Star Gold, Movies OK & Utsav movies, has been asking everyone the same question these days—what music have you been listening to?
It’s because leading youth entertainment brand Channel V has gone back to its musical roots, in keeping with its plans to rebrand the channel as announced in May this year.
The team at Channel V operated by Star India Pvt. Ltd has been working relentlessly to get its music contracts in place and ensure that the rebranding of the channel happens in a seamless fashion for its viewers.
The 5-member team at the channel has been working on a de-cluttered programming philosophy aka no tickers, no animation/graphics on the screen and no recycled bad jokes that usually pop up alongside the music videos.
“These are the things we won’t do. The programming will focus on music videos that not only sound good but look good as well. I think this is a category which has not had fun in a long time,” said Jhaveri.
This is the latest in a string of reinventions for the channel, which has been around since the early days of youth-focused television in India. Twenty-two years after it started and four years after it discontinued its music-related programming, Channel V is bringing music back to youth television.
There will be no familiar faces on the channel, including Lola Kutty , a popular VJ on the channel, among others this time. “No hosting as of now. We just want to make sure we get the music and content piece right this time,” added Jhaveri.
The Channel V curated playlist will have both Indian and international music in a 70-30 ratio as of now, even as new content is still getting ingested on the channel.
“You’re going to see us function like an app (mobile application) that updates every three weeks,” said Jhaveri, adding that the channel will have digital content synergies with Star India’s popular online platform hotstar in addition to collaboration with artists for live shows. The channel did not share names of any artists since the contracts have not been finalized.
To be sure, at present Channel V does not feature in the top five music channels or youth television channels in the country. as per the latest weekly data published by TV ratings agency Broadcast Audience Research Council (Barc). The top five music channels at present are Mastiii, B4U Music, 9XM, Sony Mix and 9X Jalwa.
Channel V 2.0 will have a new line-up of shows like Dance With V, Hit Machine, Late Night V, Most W@nted, V Hangover and V International, among others.
The new logo and channel packaging have been created by Star India’s in-house design team. The origami-inspired logo manages to create a distinct, youthful and approachable form that connects with today’s youth. The packaging is bold, vibrant, yet simple while building upon the ‘V’ form.
Along with the new look and programming, Channel V will also launch a high-decibel, 360-degree marketing campaign across key metros. With prime focus on the digital medium, the campaign will also have a presence on TV, radio and outdoor sites. Other than this, the channel will also participate in some exciting on-ground activities to attract young audience at hang-outs across key metros.
Increasingly, music consumption in India and across the world has shifted to multiple screens. It is heard on FM radio stations, portable devices, music apps like Gaana and Saavn and digital portals like YouTube, which have caused a dent in its television audience.
The music industry continued its shift to digital consumption in 2015, according to a report by consulting firm KPMG and lobby group FICCI (Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry), titled ‘The Future: now streaming’. The market size of the music industry was Rs.10.8 billion in 2015 and is expected to grow to Rs.20.8 billion by 2020. Digital music now generates 55% of the overall revenue of the industry.