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#DigiTales: #ColorsInfinity on social media, a few hits & misses

Avid torrent downloaders of popular English TV shows can now relax and stop complaining about slow internet speeds, spammy links, and stop going through traumatic exercises for catching up shows like The Big C, Flash, Orange is the New Black, etc.  thanks to Colors Infinity, a new TV channel launched with a promise to redefine English entertainment space by bringing some of the best shows to India.

Karan Johar and Alia Bhatt, the mentor-protégé duo from Bollywood, are the face of the channel. They are not just endorsers; the channels claims the duo co-curated the shows, a smart positioning to take when viewers are spoilt for choice provided by 500+ TV channels & the web, of course.

The increasing influence of social media on TV is something marketers now agree upon; and Colors Infinity used all the tricks in the book including a feature video, promoted trend, influencers, celebrities and running contests, to leverage social media to its advantage for the much anticipated launch.

On social media, unless one lived under a rock, there was no way to have missed the promotions of the channel’s launch. With both Karan and Alia having over 5 million followers on Twitter, their clout helped the channel break clutter in a noisy space.

On July 31st, the launch day, hashtag #TonightAt8 was a promoted trend which is a safe bet to take when one can’t take any chances of letting the competition troll you by taking up the top spot. That being said, ‘tonight at 8’ on a Friday means different things to different people, the brand could have used a hashtag which establishes the context better.

Considering channels like Star World and Zee Café are already offering similar content for the Indian audience, Colors Infinity could have gone the distance to win over the audience by delighting them. Beyond the celebrities and contest, they could have had a deeper integration of social & mobile on other media vehicles. For example, there was no hashtag nor social media handles mentioned on the print ads and outdoor hoardings; this is a huge opportunity missed.

Mobile can do magic to drive viewership. Consider this, for launching a popular TV show House of Cards, Zee Café used a toll free number that would send a reminder SMS at the start of the show. Quite convenient if you consider that our memory is getting closer to that of a gold fish!

Hashtag #BetterCallSaul was trending on Twitter with over 17,000 mentions, thanks to the contest Colors Infinity ran on Saturday for the show’s premier that night. Sunday saw #Fargoat9 trending powered by a contest of course.

The response management on Twitter is quite satisfactory, from queries to disgruntled contest participants, answers were both, in jest and just in time. However they could have used a landing page with detailed FAQs that answers channel numbers, show timings, etc.

On Instagram, the activity was quite disappointing, there was a total of eight posts in which seven of them were show’s posters. With two big celebrities and such a massive line up of exclusive content, it is surprising to notice that none of it used to engage the audience on Instagram, resulting in gross under-utilisation of a great platform where youths, their primary audiences, are thriving.

Overall, great line up of exclusive content and two most happening celebrities make it up for lack of any cool innovations on social media.

(Views expressed in the article are the author’s and do not reflect those of his agency / employer.)

Sreeraman Thiagarajan

Sreeraman Thiagarajan is Vice President at Publicis Beehive.
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