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Exclusive | On a summer bonanza: Nick's Nina Elavia Jaipuria

Nick and Sonic channels are a great favourite with children in metros today. With the ongoing summer holidays they seem to devote a lot of time to these channels. They are so involved with the shows that they start identifying themselves with the characters.
 
Nina Elavia Jaipuria, EVP & GM of Sonic and Nick TV has been at the helm of affairs and has seen the kids genre growing over the years.
“Touch, feel and play is extremely critical in a child’s life so what they watch on TV and engaging with that character outside TV gives them a completely different high” says Nina Jaipuria of Sonic & Nick channels.
 
As a summer bonanza they have a commitment to improve the quality of programmes they put up on the channel to enhance viewership. Children viewer ship rises automatically in the summer  and hence Nick has come with different types of contests in their programmes. They kicked off with the Chopper Ride contest where prizes are announced and the lucky ones would get a ride on the chopper.  They plan to introduce new content that has not been seen before like ‘Power Rangers Samurai’ followed by ‘Shaktimaan’ which has been aired only on Sonic so far. “These are the three big things we plan to do for this summer particularly from the point of view of saying that we want to enhance kids viewership on the channel and also increase the amount of time they are spending on the channel,” she says. Ninja Hattori has been an all time favourite with kids and the number one show. This summer they plan to air it right through the week in the 2pm and 7pm slot. Evolution of a child’s behaviour in any kids category is very slow. Hence to allow more kids to sample the show ‘Shaktimaan’ is now being aired on Nick as well.  ‘Power Ranger Samurai’ another all time favourite has come up with fresh new series which had been launched on Nickelodeon worldwide a couple of months ago. On Sonic they have launched ‘Ultramen’ a completely new action show and also ‘Perman’ to give the channel  a different flavour. ‘So from content point of view we have got very rich stuff happening in terms of giving kids more of their favourite characters,” says Nina.
 
More activity has been happening outdoors too with Mother’s Day celebrations, Chopper Ride, Holi celebrations and the latest being  Dora’s Back to School campaign. This has been a resounding success and a total sell out. It is being held at retail stores and malls where there is not only a Dora tour but all the ‘Back to School’ merchandising that are being launched at these outlets. Dora has launched her own brand of sunglasses, school bags, lunch boxes, compass box, pens, fashion bags and water bottles. “If adults can go after brands why not kids?” says Nina. Children enjoy engaging with the characters of their favourite serial and so enjoy themselves better. Characters actually become little brand ambassadors and children take to them with full enthusiasm.
 
Nick also partnered with Sports Gurukul Summer workshops. They are presently stationed in ten different locations in Mumbai. They have all the activities such as table tennis, badminton chess to basket ball etc. Nick has become a platform which creates awareness and as an encouragement they also give away sports kits to children who perform well.
 
“It’s a good time for us trying to engage kids at every level whether they are doing camps, or are in retail stores, malls or they are on TV and even digital spaces like Facebook and mobile games,” says Nina Jaipuria of Nick. They did the Mother’s Day application on the mobile and Facebook recently.
 
When asked if any new movies were being showcased on Nick she said they prefer to show them only on Sonic. Sonic Flix has shown movies like ‘Men In Black’‘Jurassic Park’ and ‘Gladiator’. But all the same kids prefer the ‘evergreen characters’ of the serials to the ‘come and go away’ characters in a movie. There are longer marathons during the weekends which the children enjoy more.
With regard to competition they see it coming from the Pogo channel which is showcasing ‘Chota Bheem’.
 
Where brand activation is concerned Nick has partnered with Times Of India to hold The Trade Fair for kids at World Trade Centre. ‘Dora Back to School’ too was held there.
Asked if the time spend on the channel has gone up Nina says “It typically would. You cannot really tell the difference as yet, but when you look at summer versus pre-summer and post-summer is when you know the difference.”  Infact they are already over 100 minutes and this indicates that time spend has moved upwards.
 
According to her there is also a 10% increase in the kids genre category. The IPL matches were a cause of concern initially but fortunately being in the evening slot they did not come in the way of children viewing Nick channel.
For Nick their strongest time band is from 12 noon to 3pm and children having different school timings is a big plus point for the channel as a broadcaster. The afternoon time band is  equally important for them.
 
When Adgully asked her in which different languages Nick and Sonic has been launched in the major metros she said, “ Traditionally Nick has been in Tamil, Telugu, English and Hindi. And Sonic has been launched  in Marathi, Bengali, English and Hindi. We are happy to be in so many regional languages because I think that is the way forward.” She said that in an analog they have to give the option to the viewer to choose the language they want and this would be possible when digitization happens.
 
She also went on to say that Sonic did well in Bengali and their 3 metros contributions at 40% are better than Nick’s contributions. Sonic is a metro channel, it is edgy and has action and adventure. They have also seen 5% - 6% growth in the market share with Sonic indicating more children’s viewership. Super Strikers, Football shows, Jackie Chan, and Kungfu Panda are some of the popular shows on Sonic.
 
On the subject of advertisers she said that they have seen a substantial increase in advertising. “In summer the category goes up and we have seen a hundred advertisers in a month and a whole lot of advertising gets stepped up all the way from McDonalds to Kelloggs to Cadbury’s to Nestle”, says Nina Jaipuria. Their regulars are Horlicks and Nestle and Junior Horlicks partnered with them on the Dora Back to School campaign.
 
With all their favourite and  interesting shows on Nick and Sonic there is plenty of action and entertainment to keep kids occupied this summer.
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