Our clients typically ask us which route they should go: HTML5 or native apps. Our answer always has been that you need to do both given the maturity level of HTML5 currently and the increased usage and brand loyalty from getting your app icon on a user's phone desktop. The recent TechCrunch interview with Mark Zuckerberg confirms this same thinking where he states that it’s not going to be native iOS/Android apps or a HTML5 web app - it will have to be both. He admits that the biggest mistake Facebook made in the last couple of years was not focusing on native apps and betting heavily on HTML5. Interesting read and interview on GigaOm.
Digital Out-of-Home (DOOH) Advertising uses IP-based digital displays to help market to a targeted audience at a particular venue. The ability to remotely plan and update site-specific or screen-specific content is powerful. OOH digital advertising networks are called many things - emerging media platforms, digital-signage networks, in-store television, new digital media, and place-based media. In the last few years, marketers have taken advantage of advances in digital, network and flat-screen technologies to broadcast programming, information and advertisements in places they could not have imagined in the past. Networked digital signs allow for rapid change, content customization at a granular level, near real-time diagnostics, and accurate proof-of-play reporting. Each of these is critical to achieving a high return on investment (ROI), especially in an environment where advertisers are paying for display time.
Hundreds of potential advertising platforms now exist. The most attractive are those where people congregate, eyeballs are focused and minds make purchasing decisions. The most viable are where screens can be mounted affordably and paid for through advertising. Interpublic Group estimates that over 700 out-of-home digital ad network platforms have emerged since 2002, with many more to come. A handful of networks have emerged in cinemas, big-box retailers, grocery stores, malls, office buildings and doctors' offices. The findings of a study conducted by InfoTrends shows that digital signage displays have 47.7% effectiveness on brand awareness, increase the average purchase amount by 29.5%, create a 31.8% upswing in overall sales volumes, generate a 32.8% growth in repeat buyers and result in 32.8% more in-store traffic. The digital signage market has a few different manufacturing leaders: NEC Display Solutions, Sony, LG Electronics, Samsung Electronics, Sony, Mitsubishi and Sharp. About 50 other smaller manufacturers follow these larger players.
Digital Signage Ecosystem
A traditional digital signage ecosystem includes:
- Content creation tools
- Media and network management software
- Player hardware and software
- Integrators to build systems
The players in the digital signage ecosystem include:
- Content Providers
- Network Operators
- Project Design
- Software Developers
- Bandwidth Providers
- Display Manufacturers
- Ad-funded Digital Signage
In an ad-funded digital signage deployment, a third party provides a digital signage system to a venue at little or no cost to the venue owner. The third party then sells ads to recover the initial capital investment and the operational expenses.
- Traditional Digital Signage
In a traditional digital signage deployment, the venue owner purchases the digital signage system to address a specific need such as informing, persuading or marketing its offerings to potential customers. The venue owner then maintains the system, content and signage operations.
- Ad-supported Digital Signage
An ad-supported system is a hybrid of the ad-funded and traditional models. In an ad-supported model, the venue owner purchases the system, but then works to sell advertising to either offset the cost of the system or to make money from it. This is a model that is typically used by large retailers, mall operators, arenas and stadiums.
One of the most complicated issues surrounding the digital OOH industry is determining exactly who is viewing content on a particular network. This helps in designing targeted content and determining Cost Per Impression (CPM) rates. A number of different organizations have made an effort to develop audience measurement guidelines for digital OOH. The Canadian OOH Digital Association/Association Canadienne de l'Affichage Numérique (CODACAN), for example, issued its guidelines in September 2009. CODACAN's audience measurement formula considers the following factors:
- Opportunity to see: measure how many people had the opportunity to see the screen
- Dwell time: duration for which the audience was in the presence of the screen
- Loop length: duration of the programming, content and advertising, before it repeats
CODACAN's metrics are modeled in part on those developed by the Out-of-home Video Advertising Bureau (OVAB), which issued its own audience-measurement guidelines in 2008. In the future network operators will be able to measure viewership through retina scans or facial recognition. Some network developers are testing applications that can sense the gender and approximate age of the person viewing the screen, giving advertisers valuable information about the consumers exposed to their message. Applications will be able to deliver content based on the characteristics of those viewing the screen at any particular time. These technologies have privacy implications that will need to be addressed before they can be rolled out.
While traditional advertising media has a long track record and established metrics to measure effectiveness, it's not the case for digital OOH. Many agencies tend to compare CPM of digital OOH with that of traditional OOH, such as that of roadside billboards. The current economic slowdown in 2008 and again in 2011 has impacted pricing as ad budgets have been reduced. Despite the effectiveness of digital OOH, the medium doesn't yet have a standard place in the ad agency structure. Many in the industry tend to lump DOOH under other categories, such as traditional OOH, as opposed to giving it its own line on the budget. The other factor affecting pricing is the lack of a uniform way of planning and placing ads. The current system typically involves meeting with account representatives or working through a content aggregator. The industry is evolving into more automated ways of aggregating networks with the ability to deliver ads directly to the screens via the Internet.
Trends and Opportunities
- Amid a sharp downturn in global advertising spending and a decline in traditional OOH advertising, digital OOH media is among the fastest growing media and will continue on an upward track, according to various forecasts.
- The Digital Promo Network Point-of-Sale Study reveals that Convenience Stores show 88% sales lift with digital signs compared to static signs. According to Adcentricity, "Networks operating in retail venues are dominating Digital OOH spending, following the same patterns as traditional media spending – with automotive, financial services and telecommunications by far the biggest categories."
- The technologies involved in digital signage continue to advance and changes in supply structure are accelerating industry revenue and streamlining display deployment. Delivery of messages and ads will be more effective in the future as there is technology advances. Allow anyone to book an ad and have it delivered automatically to any audience on any network in any geographic location and be relevant. There are a number of new ad delivery booking systems in the digital signage industry such as BookingDOOH.com and VUKUNET.
- Twitter and location-based social media have mobilized nearly everyone, providing great benefit for the Digital Signage industry as an interactive advertising and communications tool. Digital OOH billboard interactions with mobile and User Generated Content (UGC) will drive engagement.
- Signage providers are selling anywhere from one display to as many as 50 displays per site. The average is four digital displays per site.
- Location-Based technologies will play a greater role in digital signage. The opportunity exists at store level for a rich interactive experience. For instance, a restaurant can allow customers to upload a photo of your meal with a message that can be displayed on a digital display and then shared with their friends on Facebook.
- Revenue models are increasingly becoming more attractive as hardware prices per-screen continues to drop. Overall, prices have deflated by approximately 30% over the past few years. This makes the ROI for digital signage much more attractive. Also, because of media convergence, economies of scale can be achieved, therefore making planning and purchase of DOOH much easier than ever before.
- Research has shown that digital signage communication has potential to lift product and service inquiries, as well as purchases and usage. This creates brand awareness as well as customer relationship management opportunities. There is an increased reach for a product or service with digital signage, and social media enables a higher level of engagement. Through social - texts, downloads, mobile browsing, sharing, voice - there is great potential to increase foot traffic to locations and web traffic to sites, thus increasing in-person, web, and mobile purchases. The opportunity for providing campaigns and context to the user experience that work fluently across the four screens - TV, Web, Mobile, Digital Signage - is becoming a greater reality.
- Agencies are allocating spending to DOOH, but they have yet to fully adopt or grasp the full capabilities of this marketing channel's potential. Part of the problem is that ROI is not fully understood. Another problem is new networks are cropping up at a fast pace. This makes it tough for agencies and marketers to fully understand and keep track of the media available to them or even to understand the benefits of what one network offers over another. According to Adcentricity, 70% of all network sales are from local sales efforts, driven by the network sales staff. Most networks have no national sales force, which translates into agencies and brands being unaware or uneducated on the value of DOOH offerings.
- One of the primary challenges for digital signage is the lack of standards around measurement and creative units.
- Many of the systems for DOOH are complicated and expensive. There are many different players involved in getting a digital signage deployment launched. Thus the opportunity for creating large, scalable campaigns is an overwhelming challenge because it is a complex landscape to traverse when it comes to networks and systems.
- Mobile and DOOH integration is complex. However, together they will be the drivers of the interactive and customer engagement model for the digital signage industry. There are also varying formats, files structures, and standards between systems, which creates technological challenges.
The value of digital advertising is compelling since if done correctly it can result in a cohesive communications strategy that includes interactive engagement, true measurement of audience participation and impact, and the ability to precisely target the right audiences.
The entrepreneurship bug has been catching Indians and there has been a lot of startup activity in the last twelve months. There are new ideas and innovation along with proven models from the US being customized in the Indian context. Private sales, social networking, mobile and location-based services are few of the hot trends in the technology sector. Incubators, startup competitions and networking events where entrepreneurs can demo their products and ideas have started to be organized across the country. The support from the government has added fuel to the entrepreneurship drive. Angel investors, Venture Capital and Private equity firms have also started showing interest in the startup businesses and putting in big money behind ideas that have the market potential and the right team.
Any new company in India has to be registered with "The Registrar of Companies (ROC)", the government body that manages incorporation and administration of companies. In India, incorporation of a company is governed by the Companies Act 1956, which empowers the Central Government to regulate the formation, financing, functioning and closing of companies. The Companies Act does not apply to universities, co-operative societies, and scientific and other societies. The Act is administered by the Central Government through the Ministry of Corporate Affairs and the Offices of Registrar of Companies, Official Liquidators, Public Trustee, Company Law Board and Director of Inspection. Private companies are registered with the Registrar of Companies in each state and you have to contact the registrar’s office to access data on private companies since its not available online. Finding information on startups that may be incorporated as "Proprietorship" or "Partnership" firms is even more difficult.
The traditional method of raising capital for startups in India was to reach out to family and friends. However, with US based VC and PE firms setting up shop in India over the last couple of years, this trend is changing. There used to be an "Electronic Data Information Filing and Retrieval (EDIFAR)" website maintained by the Security and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) that maintained filings and funding data. This website has been discontinued and replaced by the Corporate Filing and Dissemination System (CFDS) that was put in place jointly by the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) and National Stock Exchange (NSE). However, only information on publicly traded companies is available in this database. Thus if you want to research funding information in India, you have to find on your own by digging through Investors sections of startup websites and following technology news sources such as Techcrunch, GigaOm, CNET, Indian web startup and Startup Dunia. Finding information on the team behind a startup is even more difficult in India and you have to research on the typical sources such as LinkedIn.
The two main stock exchanges in India are Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) and National Stock Exchange (NSE). However, there are also several regional stock exchanges in every state. Any startup that wants to go public lists on one of these exchanges. Bangalore (Karnataka) is the center of startup activity in India. The city has been the IT hub of India since the last two decades. Some other major cities where most startups have come up are Mumbai and Pune in Maharashtra, Hyderabad in Andhra Pradesh, New Delhi, Chennai in Tamil Nadu and Kolkata in West Bengal. Unlike the US, there is no place like Delaware, which is preferred for legal incorporations due to tax or legal filing benefits.
Venture Capital Regulations in India
List of Stock Exchanges in India
Venture Capital Funding and Private Equity in India
Company filing and registration:
Startup Related Websites in India:
Lack of angel funding or very early stage seed money has prevented growth of startups in India. When compared to the number of potential entrepreneurs, engineering skills and product ideas, the options for funding a startup through venture capital, angels and incubators are few.
The lack of investment support at the seed stage is a critical issue since it’s during the initial stages of a startups lifecycle when funds can help nurture breakthrough ideas, business models and products. The Angel community in the valley has played as important role in supporting the entrepreneurial activity and that model needs to be replicated in India.
Traditionally, most of the angel funding in India has come from family and friends. The Indian startup market is still in a nascent stage and can be compared to the Silicon Valley in the early 1980s. Angel investors in the valley have helped build successful companies and have contributed their personal wealth and experience to new entrepreneurs.
While the angel investment concept in the country is in a formative stage, the market itself has started evolving in unconventional ways to fill the gap. High net-worth individuals are starting to form networks or groups that collectively evaluate and fund deals. There has been some momentum in the number of VC firms focusing on early stage investments. Bangalore-based Erasmic Venture Funds and Mumbai-based Seedfund typically invest less than $1 million. State government-backed venture capital funds are also seeing a revival in seed funding - several, including Karnataka, Gujarat and Andhra Pradesh, have announced fresh funds. Large investment firms like Nexus India Capital, which has a $100 million India fund, and Draper Fisher Jurvetson (DFJ) that typically invest larger amounts, are showing interest in playing angel selectively. There is no shortage of startups or ideas but only a few entrepreneurs have the right experience, discipline and team required to execute well.
Incubators, startup competitions and events where entrepreneurs can demo their products and ideas have started to be organized across the country. The Government of India has started to contribute as an angel investor to help Small and Micro enterprises. The government’s "Credit Guarantee Fund Trust for Small & Micro Enterprises (CGTSME)" allows banks to grant loans up to the sum of Rs. 1 crore (approximately $220,000) to small enterprises without any collateral or security.
India is starting to see more angel activity in the last couple of years. But a lot more needs to happen quickly so that brilliant ideas do not die because of lack of funding.
Print Media in India is more than a century old and a well-established industry. The print industry mainly comprises of newspaper and magazine publishing. Book publishing is smaller but significant in terms of revenue. Even though it's a mature industry, new magazines are being launched every year. India has been one of the fastest growing world economies since the past three years. Robust consumption and rising income levels have helped the growth of print media. New titles that focus on niche topics continue to launch in the market. The revenue sources for a magazine are subscription, single copy sales and advertisement. Approximately 73 percent of revenue comes from advertising and 27 percent from circulation.
The magazine industry is going through a tough phase in India just like in other countries. Newspapers have added supplements to their main issue and infringed on the content covered by magazines earlier. Television channels have launched in different genres that didn't exist a few years back. And with the increased penetration and adoption of the Internet in the country, more people are now consuming news and stories on different topics on the web and mobile. There is still a demand for high quality print content and magazines need to deliver on that need to avoid losing market share to other mediums. In addition, they also need to explore and distribute their content on the web and mobile platforms to give choice to their subscribers to consume content from anywhere and at any time.
India has 49,000 publications, but annual revenues total just $1.1 billion. Most lack technology, marketing, and capital to grow which has resulted in a handful of publications dominating the market with the Times of India Group being the market leader. Distribution is critical for a magazine since it has to be readily available and marketed to consumers. Big publications have strong distribution network set up.
- Retail: magazines are available in retail outlets for sale. The retailer gets a commission on the sale price.
- Subscription: publisher signs up subscribers directly or through partners and delivers the issues in mail.
- Selective Distribution: Special sponsored copies are distributed in airplanes and hotels.
With the growth coming from Tier-2 and Tier-3 cities, magazines have to expand their distribution channel aggressively in those locations and localize content where needed.
The print industry in India is highly fragmented due to the large number of local languages. Regional language publications own 46 percent of the market share, Hindi language publications cover 44 percent and the remaining 10 percent is served by English publications. The primary penetration of English language magazines currently is in metros and urban centers though the growth is widening to smaller cities as the education and income levels increase among the middle class.
With the opening up of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) policy, several international publishers are aggressively entering the market and this trend is expected to continue.
There's little doubt about India's market potential. According to a national survey, 248 million literate adults still don't read any publication. Readership of newspapers and magazines is up 15% since 1998 to 180 million. It's a reflection of a younger, more educated population, especially in smaller cities.
Now that the doors to foreign investors in print media have been thrown open, one can expect activity to pick up in this sector. Companies such as Pearson, Haymarket, Time India, News Corp., and Dow Jones have eyed India's big, English-reading market. ICICI Ventures, which holds stakes in three media companies, is quite bullish about the industry's prospects.
Trade books offer the best openings, since a higher FDI has been permitted in them. Britain's Haymarket Publishing Group already has ties to Autocar India, with 80,000 subscribers. Haymarket doesn't own a stake, but helps with research and management. Now, it can invest, provide funds to print more copies, market more strongly and use Autocar as a platform to bring its other brands. Bombay's Tata Infomedia, a $30 million publisher of yellow pages and trade magazines, also has already started to solicit business with foreign companies. The Tata Group sold the Indian edition of Reader's Digest magazine, making it the first publishing property offered for sale since the government had scrapped the ban on foreign investment in the print media.
As expected, there have been various anti-FDI lobbies, which are strongly voicing protests against foreign investment in Indian Print Media. Their major contention is that foreign forces might begin dominating the content of Indian publications, which is detrimental to national interests. An extreme view given by a former Indian Prime Minister is that powered by their immense finances and goaded by an ambition to control the emerging Indian market, the foreign monopolies will impose their own agenda of ultimately controlling Indian politics. But there is more than meets the eye. The English-language media, fearing competition from players with deeper pockets, has been resisting this move by the Government. And from a marketing point of view, the English press reaches the most lucrative segment of society - the 300-million-strong middle class. International players are seen as a threat to market share.
The opening up of the print media sector to foreign investment is a bold decision by the Government, considering the unwillingness of so many past Governments to do the same. It is a policy decision that could have a very positive impact on the sector, provided the Indian publications generate enough interest and exhibit their true potential to the overseas investors. It could enrich the quality of the magazines and other publications.
- There were several niche titles that were launched in 2008 and 2009. A slew of foreign players launched their India editions.
- The most notable magazine launched was Forbes India in May 2009 by Network18 and Forbes Media.
- RPG Group's 'Open', a weekly magazine aimed at evolved Indian readers who are well informed, well traveled and identify themselves as global citizens. It is available in 12 cities.
- Pathfinder Publishing's maiden title Career 360, a monthly publication focusing on career advise.
- Technology Review, a technology magazine launched in India jointly by MIT's Technology Review magazine and CyberMedia India Ltd.
- Hearst Corporation's Harper's Bazaar, a fashion and beauty magazine in partnership with India Today.
- The re-launch of Delhi Press' The Caravann, a fortnightly magazine that covers politics, culture, arts and literature.
- Images Group's FNL and Salon and Living etc., an Indian edition of international homes magazine.
- Gill India Communications' What Women Want, a woman's magazine for women aged between 20 and 45 years and 'Lifestyle Living', a lifestyle magazine dedicated to those with a creative lifestyle.
- The trend for foreign magazines to launch their India edition is expected to continue in 2010 as well, with BBC's Lonely Planet magazine having launched recently.
- Newspapers and publications have reduced the number of pages to cut print and production cost. Magazines have discontinued supplements, which were earlier distributed free of cost with the main product.
Foreign Investment in Indian Print Media - Role of Government
The process of economic liberalization in India, which began more than a decade ago, has taken another significant step by opening up the print media sector. With the UPA Government scoring an emphatic win in the Lok Sabha elections, the media industry got an open-minded Information & Broadcast Minister in Ambika Soni who has sent positive signals to the industry. Earlier in 2009, the Government gave its nod to an increase in Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in facsimile editions of foreign newspapers. The Government also announced customs duty exemption on newsprint.
In December 2008, the Indian Government unveiled a set of guidelines to allow Indian editions of foreign news and current affairs magazines 26 per cent FDI as long as all key executives and editorial staff are Indian. The Ministry of Information & Broadcasting has for the first time given approval for the publication of the facsimile edition of foreign newspapers by allowing ‘The Wall Street Journal’ and ‘The Wall Street Journal Asia’ in India. Wall Street Journal India Publishing Pvt Ltd, a wholly owned subsidiary of Dow Jones and Company Inc, would bring out these newspapers. The government has announced customs duty exemption on newsprint for the newspaper and magazine publishing industry. These concessions were announced in February 2009 in view of the economic slowdown and the high newsprint cost which spiraled close to 25%.
Breakdown by Region
- North: 23%
- South: 38%
- East: 9%
- West: 26%
- National: 4%
The ad revenue sources are national, local, classified, pre-printed (inserts) and advertorials. The CPM rate for magazines is lower than television and the audience is more targeted.
Ad Industry Size in India
|Ad Industry||Amount ($ Million)|
Year 2011 (Projected)
|Ad Industry||Amount ($ Million)|
Top 25 English Magazines in India
- India Today
- Readers Digest
- General Knowledge Today
- Competition Success Review
- Diamond Cricket Today
- Business Today
- The Sportstar
- Competition Refresher
- Health & Nutrition
- The Week
- Auto Car
- Outlook Business
- Woman's Era
- Business India
- Outlook Traveller
- Business World
Top English Magazines by Segment
- Current Affairs, Culture & Politics
- The Week
- India Today
- Reader's Digest
- Society & Women
- India Today Plus
- Woman's Era
- Verve Online
- Desh Videsh
- Teens Today
- India Line
- Little India Overseas India Magazine
- South Asian Life
- G Magazine
- Music Today - India Today Publication
- Deccan Chronicle - Cinema News
- Bollywood Online
- Planet Bollywood Gossip
- Bollywood News Daily
- Sport Star
- Cricket Info
- Diamond Cricket Today
- Vogue (UK)
- Cosmo Girl
- Fashion Planet
- Harper's Bazaar
- Business & Financial
- Capital Market (Stock Market)
- Business Today
- Business Standard
- Economic Times
- Financial Express
- Commercenet India
- Trade India
- India Vibes Online
- Sourcing Hardware
- Business India
- Outlook Business
- Computer & Electronics
- PC Quest
- Electronics For You
- PC World
- Popular Science
- Popular Mechanics
- Computer World
- Cyber India Online
- Silicon India
- Voice & Data
- Travel & Leisure
- Budget Travel
- Discover India Magazine
- Gourmet Travel
- Outlook Traveler
- Travel Plus
- Lonely Planet
- Conde Nast Traveller
- Amar Chitra Katha
- Competition Master
- Odyssey Magazine
- Competition Success Review
- Fashion & Lifestyle
- Another Magazine
- M Magazine
- Dazed and Confused
- View Point
- India Star
- Raga Net
Average Issue Readership (AIR) Analysis (2008 vs. 2009)
The Average issue readership numbers have been on a decline due to increased competition from free content on the Internet and Mobile platforms.
- India Today is the highest read English magazine in the county with an AIR of 1,955,000, which is an 8.7 percent decline in its readership.
- Reader’s Digest has seen a 2.1 percent drop in its AIR and is now at 1,327,000.
- General Knowledge Today has dropped by 8.5 percent, and is now at 1,121,000.
- Competition Success Review has an AIR of 766,00 and has seen a 3.5 percent drop.
- Outlook with an AIR of 533,000 has seen a 7 percent drop.
- Filmfare is the new entrant in the top ten list with an AIR of 490,000.
- Wisdom has seen a 4.6% drop with an AIR of 455,000.
- Stardust has slipped down the list with a 11.4 percent decrease. The current AIR is at 388,000.
- Diamond Cricket Today has an AIR of 378,000, which is a 5.5 percent decline.
- Competition Refresher has increased by 37.3% and its AIR is now at 335,000.
- The Week has dropped by 4.2 percent and the AIR is 322,000.
- Femina has dropped by 4 percent and now has an AIR of 309,000.
- Business Today has dropped by 12 percent in its AIR down to 287,000.
- Health & Nutrition has an AIR of 250,000, which is a 11.3 percent decline.
- The Sportstar has seen 14.8 percent drop in its AIR and now stands at 242,000.
- Business India stands at 222,000, which is a 7.5 percent decline in its AIR.
- Woman’s Era has seen an AIR of 200,000, which is a 4.8 percent decline.
- Auto Car had a 13.1 percent growth to an AIR of 199,000.
- Champak has seen a 4 percent decrease with an AIR of 193,000.
- Business India has an AIR of 166,000, which is a decline of 18.6 percent.
- Business World has an AIR of 165,000.
- Outlook Traveller has seen an AIR of 146,000.
- Digit has seen a 5.8 percent decline.
- Society has seen a growth of 1.7 percent.
- Frontline has seen a 20.8 percent decline.
- Tinkle – Amar Chitrakatha is one of the few who have seen a 0.9 percent growth.
- Femina Girl saw a growth of 6.2 percent.
- Auto India like many others has seen a 18.7 percent decline in its AIR.
- P C Quest and Outlook Money have both seen a decline of 17.4 percent and 24.3 percent respectively.
- Business and Economy has seen a 6.5 percent growth with an AIR of 82,000.
- Inside Outside has seen a 17.3 percent while Cosmopolitan has seen a 61.4 percent growth.
- Overdrive has dropped by 23.7 percent.
- The Telegraph in Schools has grown by 72.5 percent with an AIR of 69,000.
- New Woman has seen a drop of 9.2 percent while Magic Pot has an AIR of 58,000.
- Time has seen a growth of 3.6 percent.
- Cine Blitz has dropped by 5.7 percent while Elle and Savvy have grown by 29.7 percent and 13 percent respectively.
- PWC – Indian Entertainment and Media Outlook 2009
- Indian Readership Survey – 2009
- Association of Indian Magazines – AIM
- Referred to News Articles and Press Releases for 2009 & 2010