Times Now, the English news channel from the BCCL (Times of India) Group will be going live on Nautanki.tv‘s network, Nautanki CEO Sunil Nair informs us. Nautanki.tv is an online video network, with widgets spread across more than 6000 sites. Available online will be Times Now’s prime time show The Newshour, and feature shows No Full Stops (health) and The Foodie (a food and travel show). Times Now intends to eventually expand its offering on the network. 

Nautanki.tv has a strategic investment from Hungama (Virtual Marketing India Ltd), and claims that around 20% of their publishers are bloggers covering news, analysis, finance etc. Nautanki.tv also has content available from another BCCL TV channel – Zoom TV, as well as STAR TVs Channel [V]. 

Thoughts On Online Video Content In India, and Advertising

— Content Owners And Platforms Are Working Together To Create A Market

Over the past couple of years, we’ve seen many channels tie up with platforms/publishers like of YouTube, Rajshri.com, Rediff’s iShare, BIG Flix and Nautanki.tv. Most of these deals are on a revenue sharing basis, largely because the revenue – mostly from advertising – is limited. The Channels seem to understand the fact that it is going to take time for advertisers to come on board, so they need to work with the networks to first establish a large user base, and then bring the advertisers on board. They realize that it is not feasible, in most instances, for platforms to pay a minimum guarantee. Thus, as an advertiser or a media planner, if you hear a representative of a channel talk about the number of views they’re receiving – there’s a vested interest in promoting the network. Saurabh Kanwar, VP (Content & Communication) for Channel V, spoke at the IAMAI Digital Entertainment conference, about how they’re receiving 4 million views a day for their shows on the Nautanki.tv network.

— User Generated Content And The Idea Behind Creating Channels

Do advertisers really want to associate with content that they can’t be sure of? While YouTube and user created videos are popular, the idea behind creating channels is to offer some kind of security to advertisers that their ads will not be associated with unreliable content. So you’ll see specific verticals on YouTube, and platforms like BigFlix, iShare, Rajshri and Nautanki with more professional content from TV channels, and even professional content creators.

— Ad Networks To The Rescue?

The dependency on advertising is a little unnerving, but the audience for the video content space is what appears to have attracted the likes of ad networks Jivox and VDOPIA to India. Both the channels and the publishers appear to be keen on the networks – they’ll take what they can get. From an advertisers perspective, it means they don’t need to create separate creatives for the Internet – the 30 seconder will do. The 30 seconder has been tried before – NDTV Media and MSN tried out “Desktop TV”, in an attempt to sell prime time, and 30 second ads on the Internet. Thankfully, they included a “stop” button.