BrandWagon Conclave 2020: Viacom18 Studios’ Ajit Andhare on the changing face of screens amidst Covid-19

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October 1, 2020 3:21 PM

There has been a shift towards a more personalised viewing experience particularly during the last few months of lockdown

As long as the unique experience of a screen is not replaceable, the screen has a tremendous value to addAs long as the unique experience of a screen is not replaceable, the screen has a tremendous value to add

With consumers accessing content across multiple screens, there has been a shift towards a more personalised viewing experience particularly during the last few months of lockdown. “Since, all these screens offer unique experiences, none of these mediums are actually dying, as long as there are choices available for consumers. The only question is when will consumers be presented with the choices,” Ajit Andhare, COO, Viacom18 Studios, said. He was speaking the inaugural edition of BrandWagon Conclave held virtually, in conversation with Anushree Bhattacharyya, editor- brand and marketing, Financialexpress.com.

According to Andhare, the answer lies in going back to the screens and understanding what is the unique experience that each screen offers. “As long as that unique experience is not replaceable, the screen has a tremendous value to add,” he added, stating that screens are essentially segments that allows you to look at each unique set of consumers in a different way and give him a different experience. Citing examples, he said that the box office provides for a social and community viewing which is something that can never be replicated. Similarly, from the OTT perspective, people have expanded their palette. These platforms offer a phenomenal amount of depth of library, wide content, choices from various regions, and even regional content within India — that experience of width and depth is unparalleled.

Further, big screen releases have been put on hold even as consumers’ have switched to smaller screens during lockdown. According to industry reports, the box office is a large industry globally, upwards of $ 42 billion. “Whether it’s the big hollywood studios or here in India, nobody is putting their A-list top deck projects out on OTTs. For instance, Disney is protecting all of its big titles, be it the Marvel series or all subsequent releases. I don’t think the big films are arriving on OTTs,” Andhare observed, adding that people are more keen on paying for the experience that they get. With over six months of lockdown, people are now craving for more out-of-home experience across categories, be it dine-in, shopping, viewing, among others.

Read Also: BrandWagon Conclave 2020: How data is becoming the support of business of entertainment

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