Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Future TV : Media Where it Matters Most

Move away TAM, Move away SEC, Move Away Saas Bahu and Woh, media will never be the same again. There is something now media planners across the country will be watching : the emergence of a new media : In-store media.
This year Kishore Biyani's Future Group kickstarted a new division Future Media which is its aggressive foray into In-store Media. The division which integrates all instore media within the retail formats of the Future Group. The division expects to rake in Rs 200 crore as the non retail revenue for the group.
Future TV is the in-store electronic media offering airtime to the advertisers. The network consists of numerous TV's placed in strategic locations throughout the stores. The concept of in-store TV was pioneered by WalMart. WalMart TV Network which began operation in 1997 is the largest TV Network in US reaching a whopping 127 Million Shoppers. WalMart TV Network is shown in 1,25,000 screens spread across 3100 US Stores.

Future TV is following the same way as WalMart TV and is set to create a trend in the development of this new media.
There is lot of impact of this media over the traditional media like Print and TV. In-store media reached TARGET CONSUMER while traditional media reaches the TARGET AUDIENCE. Future Media uses this beautiful phrase to capture the essence of this media " This media is trying to convert / influence customers in the ambiance of consumption ". Its reaching the customers while shopping compared to reaching the customers while sitting on the couch. That's real targeting. The impact of this media is huge given the fact that most of the purchases (FMCG) in supermarkets are impulse. So catch them with their wallets open !!!!!

For a brand manager, this new media offers yet another opportunity and also more complication. The media again gets fragmented. But its also an opportunity because the reach is more precise. Also for products that need more explanations, in-store electronic media is a boon . For example, in US , Listerine uses WALMART TV effectively since the customers needs to be taught how to use this brand effectively.
For the mediaplanners, once this kind of In-store media become popular, its going to be tough task to allocate the budget. New models of understanding the influence of this kind of media needs to be created.
For the creatives , the task is to make the communication appropriate . In-store ads need more creative juice since it is reaching the customer at the point of sale. The ad is not for building the brand but to make the sale.
For the media owners like Future Media , the challenge is to make this media less annoying for the customer. WalMart TV faced an issue where the customers complained that the screens are put way too above their eyelevel thereby causing inconvenience. WalMart later changed the entire design to keep the screen at convenient eye level. Another challenge is to make the content interesting to the customer. According to reports, a customer spends 6-7 minutes watching WalMart TV. So the task is to get their eyeballs along with the wallet.
For media analysts and academicians, some serious rethinking on concepts like reach , frequency, media effectiveness measurements needs to be done.

Will in-store TVs kill ordinary TV advertising ? No, but its definitely a competition for the traditional media. In-store media acts as a complimentary media for brand managers. I think that in future, traditional media will be used for brand building while in-store TV will be used for sales promotion ( the trend is already there).
In-store media can be defined as all media opportunities available to an advertiser within the retail store. Other than TV, In-store media offers other media formats also like
Kiosks
Staircases
Carrybags
Elevators
Pillars
Trolley
Dropdowns
Shelf branding
Traditional POP's
Banners and what not....
Future Media is now in the process of rolling out Future Radio.
In-store media is in its infancy now in India. The media will grow only with the growth of large retail networks like Big Bazaar. The advertisers will look at this media seriously once it acquires the critical mass.
source : futuremedia.in , financial express,agencyfaqs.