The notion of “language in entertainment” is evolving, and studying its nuances will be an important focus for Ormax Media in 2022.
By Shailesh Kapoor, The Founder & CEO, Ormax Media.
Building Industry Data
For an industry of its size and growth potential, it is staggering that there are so many information gaps in the Indian media & entertainment industry. There are several reports, such as the FICCI report, published on market size estimates, but real, on-ground estimates of the addressable consumer base are missing in many categories. When we launched The Ormax OTT Audience Report 2021, we were staggered by the need gap it filled. Many executives in the category were working on “estimates” based on secondary sources, and this report provided them the first direct-from-consumer information on how big the Indian OTT audience base is. We plan to do several reports of this nature in 2022, through which we hope to build an industry culture of valuing consumer data, than relying on desk estimates made using a few phone calls.
In my Focus 2021 piece exactly a year ago, I wrote about “Regional, The New National”. In 2021, we started the process of widening the base of our products to various languages. Since then, the trend of content crossing over has only grown stronger, and a slew of big films like RRR and KGF Chapter 2 are lined up for release in the new year. These films are now popularly referred to in the trade as “pan-India films”. But the trend now is not limited to Indian languages or to films. Korean dramas have grown in their presence in India in 2021, aided in no small measure by Squid Game. With subtitling and dubbing options widely accessible to the OTT audience, the notion of “language in entertainment” is evolving, and studying its nuances will be an important focus for Ormax Media in 2022.
When Ormax Media was founded in 2008, some of our earliest work was in the television industry in India. In November 2021, we put 13 years of our deep TV understanding together to launch Ormax Televate, a strategic tool that can help TV channels maximize their viewership potential. Because TV ratings allow for fairly granular analysis, there’s a tendency in TV networks to limit their analysis to the ratings data. However, sound growth strategies do not come by just understanding the past. Ormax Televate is our attempt to provide a robust growth framework to more than 150 TV channels in the country. It needed 13 years of work for us to be able to do this, and 2022 should see it helping many TV channels build their audience strategies using the tool.
Questions related to efficiency and effectiveness of marketing spends continue to be posed to us everyday, from various stakeholders, from both the media and the client sides. In an age when ad avoidance is a real concern related to targeting the premium audience base in India, brands have no option but to explore content partnerships, especially in the digital medium. However, the assessment of such activities remains highly subjective, with rudimentary metrics like followers, likes and shares being used. If content partnerships and co-creation is the future, then the measurement of its ROI cannot be excluded from this future. We have dabbled in this area of a while now, but the need is more pressing now than ever before. 2022 should us take several strides in the right direction on this topic.
The pandemic has proven that no matter how much you can plan your next few weeks, months or years, you will not always be able to see what’s coming your way. Hence, all the plans, such as the four points above, are controllable only to that extent. Building a strong team, that has the wisdom and the attitude to navigate through unpredictable times, while keeping their heads and their spirits high, is far more controllable. In the age of work-from-home and virtual meetings, it can be doubly challenging to shape an organization culture with trust and togetherness at its heart. Talent and Human Resources have acquired more value than ever before, and this is an area I have found myself spending a lot of thinking time on in 2021. And 2022 will be no different in this regard.