What better way to reach out to your audience in distant lands than through a fun filled, colourful carnival? Taking a lesson or two from fast moving consumer goods companies that speak to the heart of India through on ground fairs and festivals, television broadcaster Multi Screen Media (MSM) has initiated a unique carnival property called Mahotsav directed towards the hinterland up north.
The event will be carried out in six key towns of Uttar Pradesh and thirty seven towns and cities of Punjab and Haryana. The Uttar Pradesh markets include those areas with a population over a million, such as Kanpur, Lucknow, Varanasi, Allahabad, Agra and Dehradun. The Punjab Harayana zone includes markets that have population ranging from half a million to a million. The markets within the Punjab-Haryana belt include Bathinda, Abohar, Batala, Yamuna Nagar, Kaithal, Jind, Rohtak, Jalandar and Bhiwani. The broadcaster has earmarked spends of a few crores for this initiative, which will help them connect with those in the hinterland and this is especially significant in the wake of a transition to digitally addressable systems in tier two towns. In the Mahotsav, the channel will bring all its shows and characters to the audiences either through actual star appearances or by creating stalls where participants can play and act just like the characters they love. In certain instances, they are encouraged to put up an act along with the protagonists from the show. The network did not comment on the investment for these initiatives.
So, the Maharana Pratap fans can enjoy the gleaming props and other embellishments at the Maharana Pratap booth while Kaun Banega Crorepati fans can take away a ‘Maha’ memory back by posing alongside Amitabh Bachchan’s life size cut out. The Indian Idol dreamers can lend their vocals to a karaoke set up and real life couples can check their compatibility with the Bade Acche Lagte Hain compatibility test. There is also a ‘Men against Crime’ defense workshop for women to promote the property – Crime Patrol.
Gaurav Seth, senior vice president, marketing & communications, SET says, “The initiative was conceived about three months ago. We then identified the markets that we wanted to start with. UP, Punjab and Haryana are part of the first phase which will continue till January-end. The next phase will begin after the Indian Premiere League. We are not targeting any LC1 (less than 1