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Adgully Exclusive | Looking for more ways to integrate programs with social media: Radio Mirchi's Rahul Balyan

Radio Mirchi recently launched a Bhojpuri radio channel which will be available through a mobile subscription. The channel is going to entertain Bhojpuri listeners as they can go on enjoying listening songs round the clock on their mobiles. This product will be available as part of the Mirchi Mobile offering. Spice Digital which has been powering Mirchi Mobile over the last year is the partner for this offering. The Mirchi Bhojpuri feed will be available to subscribers of Airtel initially, and will be expanded to other Telecoms soon.

So Adgully interacted with Rahul Balyan, Head -Digital Initiatives, Radio Mirchi, so as to know more about the initiatives and plans of Radio Mirchi.

When asked about the key initiatives of radio Mirchi, Rahul Balliyan, says, "Mirchi Bhojpuri is a key initiative as far as digital initiative is concerned and we are taking our brand to those parts of the country where mobile penetration is good but our brand has no other way to reach those audiences and so this Radio Mirchi mobile launch is a step in that direction."

He further adds, "We also have a website and we are looking at showcasing all those aspects that brand Radio mirchi is doing across the country."

When talking about how important social media is for a radio channel, he says, "Social media is not only important for a radio channel but it is a platform where people are spending more and more time. Social media provides you the opportunity of interacting and radio being interactive, social media presence could take us to another level of engaging with our consumers and listeners."

Balyan further adds, "These days 2% of Indians are on Facebook and around 30% of our audiences are already online. However the dynamics of online interaction has changed people have stopped sending emails and prefer to stay in touch through Facebook or other social networking sites. So it becomes very important for a brand to be available for a conversation with its audiences on a social media platform."

When asked about the focus area, Balyan says, "Though we are still learning and experimenting about how digital initiatives and will work, we will be finding more ways to integrate our programs with social and online media."

Further speaking about online radio, he says, "In India online radio is not that popular as there are not many players online and to some extent the current royalty structures that are prevalent are not that viable. There were few players which were very online radio focused but were probably in loss. It is not a sustainable business in the long run till the royalty structures change."

Speaking about Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities as important markets, he states, "As far as Mirchi Mobile is concerned the Tier 2 and Tier 3 towns are equally important as large cities because the consumption behavior is similar to the penetration behavior. These days everyone has a mobile and so these consumers cannot be ignored."

"Mirchi Bhojpuri is a unique offering in the VAS space since it brings together the expertise of Radio Mirchi and the sensibilities of the Bhojpuri movie industry. With the massive penetration of mobile phones in India and the huge demand of Bhojpuri content in VAS, we feel that with this product will find great success," concludes Rahul Balliyan

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