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News18 turns to print roadblock to assert supremacy

Ahead of the new tariff regime coming into effect from February 1, 2018, Network18’s news network, News18, undertook a print roadblock in three leading English news dailies. The front pages of The Times of India, The Economic Times and Hindustan Times carried full page ads of News18, wherein the news network claimed to be “India’s No.1 News Network”. 

Dubbed 18=1, the ad claimed that 8 out of 10 Indians owning TV sets watch News18 Network (as per BARC, TG 2+, Market All India, Period Week 3 ’18 to Week 2 ’19 | BARC, TG 15+, Market All India, Period Week 49 ’18 to Week 52 ’18). 

The News18 Network, comprising 16 channels, claimed to have an 11.8 per cent market share. The ad placed Zee Network at second place with 10.1 per cent market share, followed by ABP with 8.6 per cent share and TV Today with 8.2 per cent share. 

Speaking to Adgully on the print roadblock campaign, Rahul Kansal, Group Brand Advisor, Network18, said that the campaign was not the result of any necessity, but to promote the network’s position. “We undertook this roadblock only in The Times of India, The Economic Times and Hindustan Times in Delhi and Mumbai,” Kansal said, adding, “Since our presence is pan-India, we will do a similar campaign across India very soon. We haven’t used the OOH medium and there are no plans to have a roadblock on television at the moment.” 

It may be recalled that News18 had initiated the 18=1 campaign last year, which Kansal claimed was a huge hit and gave the network traction in terms of numbers. “We went to become the No. 2 Hindi General News Channel,” he affirmed. 

While digital is not part of the roadblock campaign, News18 has a strong digital presence and as stated by Kansal, “All our campaigns/ initiatives also go digital simultaneously. This particular campaign has been created by Triton Communications.” 

“We want our channels to be on the top of the mind of the consumers and we also want to inform that we are represented in all languages,” Kansal said when asked how the latest initiative will help the News18 Network gain viewers under the new tariff regime.

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