Interview with Sales Performance Strategist Sudipto
1. What is your background and when and how did you get involved in TV advertising sales?
Born and brought up in Kolkata (Calcutta) I was always in sports. Football and Martial arts….gold medal holder in Tae Kwon Do full contact, in featherweight category….I have played for 1st Division IFA football club as well. Moved out of Calcutta and started working in Institutional sales with a company in Computer education and then finally moved into advertising sales with Tata Yellow Pages Delhi.
TV happened when one of my erstwhile junior colleague, Sudip Roy, organized an interview for me in Zee Network in 2003. He had moved into TV Advtg Sales ahead of me and told me about the excitement which lies in this dynamic medium. It was a logical move for me from print to TV, but Sudip’s help was instrumental. Rest is history.
2. How is TV Advertising market in India and what is the first preference of Indian brands – TV, Print, Radio or Social Media Advertising?
TV Advertising Market in India is quite exciting, both in terms of revenues, salaries & incentives involved and from “dignity of work” point of view too. Almost all clients e.g. Corporates, SMEs and Even Govt / PSUs look up to TV an extremely effective, viable and cost-effective medium for showcasing/building their brands. The TV is also a very well researched medium, where spends happen basis measurable and authentic data.
Preference wise, it depends and varies from brand to brand and even on the campaign objectives, but yes, TV is probably the most sought after medium currently ….. and all these bubbles about digital/social media is still a far fetched dream. TV delivers a very high reach and commands far bigger revenues and rate per “unit” than digital (exceptions are not what I am talking about, e.g. FB or Youtube etc. make huge monies but how many of such platforms are there anyway ?) . Close to 50% of the overall advertising industry revenue in India is controlled alone by TV as a medium.
3. According to you which out of these is the most effective advertising platform – TV, Print, Radio or Social Media and Why?
Each one of these has a different purpose and depending on the objective of the advertiser, platforms will vary. However, TV and print, both are very effective, in their own unique ways, and hence are the top priorities for most advertisers. The TV is excellent when it comes to Brand Building and Print does a decent job when it comes to response led advtg. Other mediums are built around these 2 in the core media plans and an overall media mix is created. People may have different views with all these jazz about digital, but trust me, other mediums are far away from TV & Print, in terms of revenue share, which is a true indicator of advertiser’s choice of medium. An average middle-class family in India still watches a lot of TV, because digital is still a more of the Urban phenomenon, due to affordability, connectivity and language.
4. What do you enjoy most about your career? Your current position as Country Head Advertising Sales at India TV?
In my current job, I enjoy doing something I love to do…Sales…. and also the sheer CHALLENGE involved.
We are a single TV channel platform and therefore handling the growth without any other channel(s) around or without any place to hide, is extremely challenging. Passion, Honest Hard Work, Great credible content, smart decisions taken on time, right kind of flexibility in the approach to the overall business ……….all these and many more need to be done to stay relevant and deliver on time as per organizational growth objective. The steps we follow as an organization ……..the trust WE have in our team…..and the benchmarks we have created and still create ……are so satisfying and also worth being proud of. I also enjoy the fact that I work under a Boss & a true Leader, our MD, who is an extremely respected & experienced TV industry expert and a great mentor to all.
5. What advice would you give to people who want considering a career in TV Advertising sales?
Advertising Sales in TV industry is an amazing career option but has to be negotiated carefully. You need to be a street smart type, extremely hard working too, and of course understand the business nuances well, because it’s very dynamic. You first need to learn to Sell well …..ethically ….and then be in TV advtg sales because it requires an honest, smart and farsighted salesperson …..not just an average salesperson, to do well in TV advtg sales. Planning and grasp on numbers are critical too. Last but not the least……you need to be physically and mentally strong because it’s a 24 hrs dynamic channel and you need to be connected 24×7. You cant expect to be “cut off” even for a day. That’s critical ….because it can take a toll on your personal life, relationships, leaves and family holidays. So it’s definitely not easy ……but if done with passion then it can be highly addictive and enjoyable. Monies are good and yes, you are pampered too, because you drive the revenues. So , all in all, it’s a great career option where you can have Fun While You Work Hard.
Disclaimer: ** Views mentioned above are personal.