Coming Sunday (24 August) viewers of Star Plus will have a new persona on screen. We aren’t talking about any new saas bahu show, but the much hyped singing competition with the current youth icon- Yo Yo Honey Singh.
The two hour show- India’s Raw Star- is slated to go on air against the backdrop of intense marketing and advertising along with the big gamble of having Singh as the face. Every Sunday, viewers will get to witness 10 artists who will go beyond just singing and will create a distinct style of music, irrespective of his/her singing language or music genre. Differentiating itself from other such shows, the channel had conducted only digital auditions where interested participants had to upload their audition videos through the website or mobile app, submit their entry and get a chance to be a part of India’s Raw Star. “In the past, digital auditions have been a part of music reality shows, unlike ours which focused exclusively on digital. Our aim was to say that if we are trying to reach out to genuine artists then why make them stand in long queues in different cities. Why not do something of their choice and at the comfort of their homes,” believes Star Plus SVP – marketing Nikhil Madhok. In conversation with indiantelevision.com, Madhok shares aggressive marketing plans for the channel’s first ever music reality show and how it plans to cater to the youth in a big way. The digital audition, which was targeted due to a high amount of youth spending their time on it, received 50,000 entries. The first innovation was on YouTube. The ads that were placed before videos were timed in such a way that when a person tries to ‘skip’ the video, Honey Singh would pick up the skip button and say ‘you can't skip me just the way you can't skip the Raw Star contestants’. This apart, contextual promos have been created for different sites and different consumers targeting their preference of videos. One such example is an ad that will play on a car website where Singh will say ‘Stop searching for small cars, why don’t you ride on my car with me in my raw stars from 24 August onwards.’ All the contestants will have their own social media profile and twitter handles through which they will be tweeting and interacting with the fans and engaging with them throughout the season. Giving a sneak peek into the making of the episodes will be clippings hosted by Gauhar Khan called ‘The G-Factor’. This will be exclusive to digital. On the outdoor front, it will be experimenting with the concept of 3D in Delhi and Mumbai. Star had previously dabbled in 3D content last year prior to the launch of Mahabharat. Picking up on Singh’s popularity, the channel has bought ad slots on music channels to drive the youth from where there are found most. At the beginning of any of Singh’s song will be an ad asking viewers to tune into Raw Star to listen to more such songs. Madhok states that the aim was to do something that would be attention grabbing. He also believes that in the recent past music reality shows have not done well and that was the starting point for the channel to say that if music is such a big need for youngsters then why isn’t something meaningful for them on TV. Although Madhok was tight lipped when asked about the production cost, sources from the industry say that it could range from Rs 55 crore to Rs 65 crore. Karbonn Smartphones has come on-board as the title sponsor of the show and Maruti Suzuki Swift as the co-powered by sponsor. According to industry estimates, Karbonn could have shelled around Rs 6 crore to Rs 8 crore, while Maruti Suzuki Swift may have spent 15 per cent less than that. 10 sec ad rates are being quoted as Rs 3.3lakh to Rs 5 lakh. Moreover, more than 7,000-8,000 spots have been playing on Star Network to promote the show for which Rs 12 crore to Rs 15 crore is being invested on marketing it.