ZEEL’s new lifestyle channel, Zee Zest is the network’s entry into the niche lifestyle genre. Today we speak to Amit Shah, Cluster Head – North, West & Premium Channels, Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd to get a macro perspective on the new offering and the way forward.
While we understand that Zee Zest is backed and supported by the mighty Zee Network, what are some growth strategies that you are already/going to use to get the channel financials in the green zone?
Zee Zest is a part of a very strong cluster of channels. At ZEE, our aim has always been to expand into segments where we see an unmet opportunity to cater to the consumers’ content preferences. The channel’s unique proposition will further provide a fillip to our robust sales team to ensure we deliver great value to advertisers, and we expect our curated content offerings and cost-conscious approach to generate substantial subscription income. Having a large portfolio of leading consumer centric channels, our teams harbour the capabilities to serve not only the viewers’ needs but also appeal to a diverse advertiser segment. This approach gives us the confidence of delivering on the financials that we have committed to, in the near future.
How difficult do you think is it to thrive and succeed in a niche-genre category like lifestyle in times when the broadcasting industry is going through a lot due to the NTO 2.0? Your thoughts as an industry thought leader….
All our business decisions are taken keeping the consumer at the fore and like I mentioned we identified a need gap in the lifestyle segment to have a distinct offering that provides a holistic entertainment experience to the viewers. A lifestyle channel has a wide scope for association with brands. The lifestyle genre is beyond limit and hence, Zee Zest serves as a platform for brands to reach a focused SEC A target audience through the channel.
A brand which is present across various platforms and offers content for every age group and community in the country will help us reach homes we might have not been able to before.
While Zee Zest has a robust line-up of content with the likes of Chef Pankaj Bhadouria and Chef Kunal Kapur and shows such as 100% South Indian, India’s 50 Best Dishes, Ghar Sa Yummy – Swaad Family wala, Food Veda, and Meetha toh Banta Hai what growth prospects do you see for these shows on linear TV? Don’t you feel Food content does exceptionally well on digital?
Today, most brands prefer a mix of TV and digital in their portfolios, since these mediums cater to different content needs and consumption occasions of the consumers. With Zee Zest, we are using a dual strategy to reach consumers across both these platforms. Zest is available as a linear channel and also has a unique digital and social media presence. In addition to this, the channel is also available on ZEE5, and this amalgamation gives advertisers a holistic value proposition with more touchpoints available to reach their audiences. We do not want to restrict the medium to reach our audience. The 360-degree presence of the channel enables us to take our shows in various forms and multiply the reach.
From a cluster perspective, what are your expectations from Zee Zest and what are your near term and long term goals/expectations from the channel? (1 Year period to 3 Year period)
At a cluster level, we are very optimistic on Zee Zest and its ability to serve a differentiated offering to audiences who are seeking newer experiences. The aim is to capture the consumers’ mind space and become their go to choice for entertainment and information. Going forward, our aim is to continue investing in strengthening the channel’s foothold in the genre, and also building a strong and distinct digital presence to create an integrated offering. At ZEE, we create strong curated brands which cater to diverse market segments and we will thrive to make Zee Zest a leader in the genre.