After its launch on 6th May 2017, it took just one week for Republic TV to emerge from a new kid on the block to a leader of the pack. Arnab Goswami, Founder & Editor-in-Chief, Republic TV, and his dedicated team not only launched the channel with aplomb but also made it the most watched news channel in India with 2.11 million impressions and 51.9 percent viewership in its very first week.
“The biggest challenge in news media industry today is getting access to real-time news. And then trying to understand how viewers are responding to the news,” says Goswami.
What makes a news channel highly efficient is how well it can manage its resource through continuous tracking and coordination. “Every channel has resources across the country. But how do you map your resources? Efficient tracking and coordination of resources is a big challenge,” shares Niranjan Narayanaswamy, Editor, Republic TV.
Mumbai-based solutions provider Powerupcloud Technologies, a Microsoft Gold Partner, proposed Microsoft Kaizala integrated with Azure as the solution.
Decision support for operational planning
The Kaizala mobile app combined with a powerful online management portal has helped Republic TV improve the productivity of their news team. Kaizala has helped them improve operational coordination. As a part of their daily operations, they ask all their field teams to share their location at multiple times during a day.
“At their central studio on the Kaizala Management Portal, the operations team can see all this information aggregated in a map-based representation with the location of their entire news crew. This dashboard is used for decision support to manage resource placement across the country as news stories break throughout the day,” explains Ankit Garg, COO, Powerupcloud.
“It allows you to take decisions quickly, empowers your staff to move things around faster. That’s one of the reasons why Republic has become a number one channel. Because we use Kaizala for the placement of our live broadcasting vans and that, in turn, is the tool of empowerment for our people,” says Arnab.
Enhancing viewer engagement
Republic has also decided to use Kaizala as the platform for empowering its viewers to provide feedback and actively engage with the news channel through a subscription-based public group. “They plan to use Kaizala both as an outbound broadcast channel for sending out breaking news, top stories and upcoming program details and as an inbound participation channel where viewers can take real-time polls during debates, share sentiments on trending issues and also share reviews and feedback,” reveals Garg.
The most ambitious possibility that the channel wants to explore, however, is to enable viewers to proactively participate by becoming citizen journalists, asking questions directly to panelists and anchors and reporting news during disaster situations. Republic will use Kaizala’s Public Group, a unique hub and spoke model of messaging communication, wherein admin users in a central hub can connect with a large number of subscribers acting as spokes and have two-way communication on a one-to-one basis.
“The best part of Kaizala is the fact that unlike other social messaging apps, you don’t have a limit on how many people can be in a particular group. It helps you reach out to a wider audience which means you can interact with any number of people,” shares Garg.