| 18 Jul 2024
"Coke studio cannot give the platform larger than Star," Nikhil Madhok

India's Raw Star, a reality show is in search of talents that can write, compose and sing their own songs. Unlike other reality shows, Raw has no judges or a couple of anchors. Star India SVP Marketing and programming strategy, Nikhil Madhok talks about the USP of Raw Star and the marketing startegies for the same.

What are your marketing strategies to promote India's Raw Star?

We are trying to do two things. Since Yo Yo Honey Singh is a youth icon, we plan to reach out to audiences in a big way through the show. For this of course, we have used Star Network which is our old platform to reach out to the audience. We are also planning a few things digitally. The first one is that we are the first people to do digital auditions, so there was no other way to send in entries. For Youtube, we launched something like 'skipping the ad', in which Yo Yo appeared to viewers saying “you can’t ignore me or my rockstars” if they tried skipping it.

We will have a campaign on Twitter in which fans of respective contestants can argue about who should progress on the show. We even have customised our promos depending on the kinds of things that people search for. For e.g. if users are looking out for car ad links, Yo Yo will appear and say “choti moto gadiyan toh bahut dekh le. Mere aur mere rockstar ke saath karo sawari badi gadi mein.”

Our contestants will have social media profiles for actively engaging with the audience. We will also have behind the scenes available on the digital platform. We are planning to come up with an outdoor activity this weekend and will introduce 3D hoardings in Mumbai and Delhi. Since Yo Yo is a music icon, we have tied up with channels like M Tunes and 9X, which will play back to back music of these artistes, and before the song, we will have Gauhar and Yo Yo talking about Raw Star and the artistes. We also have an indirect connect with MTV. Apart from this we will definitely have ads on our channel and radio too.

How long did it take to put up a show like India's Raw Star?

We started working on this show six to eight months ago, and the idea was to break the cliché and do something new. There is no judging panel here and no hosts acting comedic with each other. Yo Yo is more like a mentor and the eliminations for all the 14 episodes will be decided through public voting. Yo Yo will have a point of view on who goes through or not. Even our contestants will not be able to rehash popular songs and make it their own.

When you say that contestants can compose sing and write their own songs, how is this different from Coke Studio?

Coke Studio cannot give that kind of platform that Star Plus can because we reach out to more people on a daily basis. Secondly they get a mentor like Yo Yo Honey Singh, who is the epitome of a “Raw” star. It is a story about a person who can be successful only through talent. He embodies a raw star since he makes his own music, writes the lyrics and also sings his songs.

Would the winner get a contract in Bollywood?

No, not actually. If we do that, it will defeat our purpose of giving them a platform. Once they get the visibility and the platform, it is for them to take it forward.

Yo Yo Honey Singh is always in the news for different reasons. Does it affect the reputation of the channel?

People have different views on Yo Yo. But broadly speaking, he is one artiste who has a huge fan following. He is also loved for his music and people love him which is what matters. As far as controversies are concerned, it is the part and parcel of this ball game.

Do you plan to come up with another season?

Yes we would love to, but all that depends on the kind of response we get in the first season and are primarily focusing on that.