“We have over 1,000 videos, 1 million subscribers across 10 languages, have over 100 million lifetime views and half a billion minutes watched on the channel…that’s equal to 951 years of watching video 24x7 or as much as travelling to Pluto 100 times! 80% viewership in the 18-34 age group, 90% of our audience is male and in June 2019 we did a watch time of 72 million minutes (13.7 years of watching in just one month!)” Said Shakir Ebrahim, Founder and Creator of Bisbo.
In an interaction with MediAvataar India, Shakir divulged that what it takes to simplify and humourise hard content in order to grab consumer’s attention in this digital age.
Read through to know the workings and concerns pertaining to the “Best Startup in Asia" in 2018!
MediAvataar: What is the story behind Bisbo?
Shakir: ‘News in Comics’ was first launched by me straight out of college in 1990-91 in printed format known as ‘The World in Pictures’. India was a different market then and the concept was probably ahead of its time (plus I was a little raw in business) so even though it ran for 2 years, I couldn’t sustain it. I always thought it to be a brilliant concept so 25 years later I am back, in a new vibrant digital India, hopefully a bit wiser too!
MediAvataar: What propelled you to launch the channel?
Shakir: Print was out of question. In the interim period animation had made huge strides, so I added that to the mix leaving me with a decision to make an app or go on YouTube.
MediAvataar: Why YouTube?
Shakir: YouTube is the best option for discoverability, there are no upfront fees or investments and the system is robust.
MediAvataar: Tell us more about the Digital scenario in India, could it be a protagonist?
Shakir: Still images are passé. Digital allows one to go beyond boundaries. The medium is constantly evolving.
MediAvataar: How has the advent of animation, 2D & 3D has made comic characters and cartoons cooler than ever?
Shakir: Today 2D is common; technology like 5G and sure, 6…7G, will make 3D and holographics as common as will the advent of newer, easier animation software.
MediAvataar: How has animation made it possible to present comics as serious news journalism in India?
Shakir: Animation has enabled the presentation of news to be more viewer friendly. TV shows only footage they have captured, repeating the same loop over and over again. Animation allows recreation, reimagination and will certainly have a larger space in serious news journalism.
MediAvataar: Were you ever worried that this portrayal of hard news could easily turn into something frivolous?
Shakir: Most people who see the video for the first time aren’t really sure if the news is real or it’s some kind of joke. But as they see 2, then 3 videos, they realise that hey, this is pretty interesting. To add to credibility, we write all of our sources in the video description, do comprehensive background research and provide footnotes in screens where required. Whenever we make an error (happens) readers are quick to point it out and we are as quick to acknowledge it or hold our ground in case we believe otherwise. I think we have been pretty successful in establishing our serious intent, as we have several UPSC candidates viewing our videos.
MediAvataar: How Indian comic industry is maturing, from fantasy to journalism?
Shakir: Not really, Fantasy is still big business as can be seen by all the superhero movies hitting screens. But many of the same movies now integrate real or possible events within their storylines; illustrated books is among the fastest growing sectors in publishing, infographic channels on YouTube are immensely popular and with Bisbo, we have added to the pool of evolution.
MediAvataar: Why illustrated novels are one of the fastest growing and most popular categories in publishing?
Shakir: People are reading less and increasingly consume information through video. Animated content, whether serious or for fun, makes information much more digestible, appealing and easy to understand.
MediAvataar: Bisbo was awarded "Best Startup in Asia" in 2018, please share some analytics with us.
Shakir: We have over 1,000 videos, 1 million subscribers across 10 languages, have over 100 million lifetime views and half a billion minutes watched on the channel…that’s equal to 951 years of watching video 24x7 or as much as travelling to Pluto 100 times!
80% viewership in the 18-34 age group, 90% of our audience is male and in June 2019 we did a watch time of 72 million minutes (13.7 years of watching in just one month!)
MediAvataar: What’s there in the pipeline?
Shakir: The big picture answer is 100 million subscribers by 2024 with an upload 125 videos a day in 25 languages.
But by March 31, 2020
(1) 3 videos consistently per week
(2) 1.5 million subscribers
Want to know more about Bisbo?
Bisbo, registered as GoBisbo Broadcasting Network Pvt. Ltd. is India's first and only YouTube channel that creates intriguing animated news videos and has a combined subscription base of 1 million subscribers and 100+ million views across 10 channels in 10 different Indian languages. Shakir Ebrahim, Founder and creator of Bisbo, is Mumbai based serial entrepreneur, seasoned businessman with a demonstrated history of working in the publishing industry. Bisbo is the only channel in India that produces news content in animated format and has recently launched an international news channel targeted at the American market.
Here are the YouTube channels:
www.youtube.com/BSBO (US market)
www.youtube.com/BisboGo (English, Indian market)
Chtrbox, a leading Indian influencer marketing company, announces the launch of Boombox to cater to growing demand for social media influencers.
Boombox is the industry’s first open discovery tool of India’s most influential voices, aimed to make the marketer’s job of shortlisting relevant celebrities & influencers easier, smarter and ROI driven.
Commenting on the launch, Pranay Swarup, Co- Founder and CEO, Chtrbox said, “Our objective in launching Boombox as a platform and end-to-end service is to empower marketers with strategic, data-powered, consolidated talent options when selecting celebs and top influencers for brand campaigns, events and endorsements. Today, when brands select talent, we’ve noticed that choices are decided largely on simple intuition such as - do I know & like this person? Do they represent the values my brand wants to represent? We are bringing data to this critical decision-making process, to ensure that when you invest & book India’s top talent for any purpose, you’re maximizing your ROI on social media. With Boombox, we want to help brands discover creative and budget-effective optimizations you may not have thought of before, paired with our expertise on creative strategy to create memorable influencer content.”
Boombox enables brands & their agencies with easy access to search, filter and shortlist famous personalities for their next big marketing initiative. The launch of Boombox comes at the right time today when brands, celebs and influencers are all increasingly looking to optimize time, speed, budgets, and most importantly grab attention spans of end consumers in this digital first world. Influencer powered content is disrupting the way brands created content traditional ads with talent; it's now a lot more cost-effective and impactful for talent to showcase authentically how they're engaging with the brand's product or idea, if it all it resonates with who they are.
Roshan Abbas, MD of Geometry Encompass, who is also an early investor in Chtrbox, adds, “Today more than ever, we’re offering brands digital extensions to their physical events and experiences. Chtrbox serves a great partner and platform through which agencies can now empower their brands with a new way to analyze and collaborate with all categories of celebs and influencers.”
"What makes Boombox awesome for planners is that it's amplified by Macro, Micro and Nano Influencer Power Packs, customized as per target categories and audience demographics, hand-picked from Chtrbox’s massive 350,000+ influencer base, giving unparalleled strength to deliver influential people powered marketing & content for brands” adds Rohit Raj, Co-Founder at the Glitch and Chtrbox.
B4U Hits a Hat-trick!!! Surmounting Hindi Movies, Hindi Music & Bhojpuri Movies genre
B4U Network, popularly known for its Bollywood Music and Movie channels, recently launched B4U Kadak as its premium offering in the Hindi Movie Genre & B4U Bhojpuri in the Bhojpuri Movie Genre. Now in a spectacular feat, both the newly launched channels, B4U Kadak and B4U Bhojpuri, along with B4U Music, have been rated No. 1 in their respective genres as per the BARC report of Week 32. Considering that B4U Kadak and B4U Bhojpuri were launched in May this year, the achievement becomes even more significant.
B4U Kadak is a Hindi Movie Channel targeted at Urban and Rural audiences in the HSM market with a bank of popular Bollywood & South Indian dubbed movies with a promise to offer 101 World Television Premieres. Most of these premieres are “Original blockbusters” and “Award Winning Films”. B4U Kadak is leading with a huge margin with 553 million impressions followed by the closest competitors Sony Max at 393 and Star Gold at 358 million impressions respectively. The unique strategy of offering south Indian films (Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Malayalam) dubbed in Hindi has resulted in an audience experience which is both engaging and rich.
B4U Bhojpuri is a Bhojpuri Movie Channel, and it is a unique offering for the audience with a premium packaging unseen in the Bhojpuri genre. As a content mix, B4U Bhojpuri is offering audiences a mix of devotional songs, festive programming during cultural events like Chhatt, Navratri, Diwali and Holi. There’s also the promise of offering 2 WTP’s (World Television Premieres) for Bhojpuri audiences every week which is an unmatched offering by any other channel in the HSM market.
B4U Music, the flagship channel of B4U Network which has entertained audiences with Bollywood Music Content for the last 20 years, still rules the hearts of the Hindi speaking masses. B4U Music through its melodious content from 90’s, 2000’s and contemporary mix of songs appeals to the young generation of both urban and rural audiences which has become loyal to the channel because of its right pick and programming. B4U Music has led the category in the past 4-week average as the No.1 music channel in the genre. This week too B4U Music has won the audiences hearts with its offering.
Water in India is a scarce resource and yet its wastage sees no end. Hindustan, India’s second largest daily, decided to raise its voice on this important issue through a 10 day editorial campaign titled ‘Paani Mera Haq’ highlighting the core issue of water wastage and the impact it had on the residents. This was accompanied with a first-of-its-kind innovation across B2B agencies, promoting them to save water.
Hindustan used its massive on-ground presence across cities in U.P. and Bihar, to orchestrate multiple activities including RWA audits with subject matter experts highlighting damaged pipelines leading to water wastage and prompting quick repair work. This was combined with empowering residents to become Citizen Journalists, giving them an opportunity to raise their voice against water leakage which was in turn amplified by Hindustan. Additionally, Samwaad sessions were also conducted across key locations of UP and Bihar with people of influence to engage them on the importance of saving water.
Along with these activities, Hindustan engaged with its B2B clients through innovative DM distribution of alcohol humidified wet wipes, enabling each person to save up to 100 liters of water. Here is a short video on the innovative ‘Water Saving Box’:
Talking about the initiative, Rajan Bhalla, Group CMO, HT Media Ltd. said, "Hindustan believes in not only driving conversations about the issues that matter but also work towards an effective solution. The ‘Paani Mera Haq’ campaign was another innovative effort in the direction of leveraging our reach and network to spread awareness and find solutions for a critical issue affecting each one of us. The success of this campaign across platforms was yet another validation of Hindustan delivering on its core brand promise – Tarakki ka Naya Nazariya."
We live in an era where content is king, and consumers identify with messaging that is truly inspirational in a real way. Radio is a platform that gives voice to some of the most creative and understated facts of life, connecting the dots for common man daily but often we end up giving less credit to people who drive this industry, almost single-handedly.
RJ Kartik from MY FM is one such incredible storyteller who, in a short span of time has connected with millions of people. He has crossed 3 million mark in less than 2 months out of which 2.5 million followers joined him in May itself.
But what lead to his astronomical success? We found out!
In 2015 and 2018, Kartik won IRF Award for Best Radio Program (Hindi – Non-Metro Station) - Salaam Jaipur, but he is humbly forging ahead in the quest for telling wonderful stories and continue to inspire and motivate people with his one of a kind show.
In explaining his unique take on the storytelling, he said, “Storytelling will always remain special for Indians because we all have grown up by listening to our “Dadi” and “Nani’s” stories who served us with moral values and motivated us to do something good in life. If I talk about my short stories then I always start my breakfast show with a motivational story, in 2017 our top management decided that we should post such motivational stories on all social media platforms. And since then I always post a Motivational story on every Monday morning @ 9:30 on all my social media handles.”
“I want to thank my every follower; I am feeling special because of my fans whom I call my family. So now my family is growing stronger and I am happy to be a part of it. I promise all my fans that I will keep posting such motivational stories, which will bring a positive change in our lives. “Kartik added.
His simplicity makes listeners relate to him. He believes in knowing the problems people are facing and try to bring out a story on that issue inducing a positive change in them.
He continued to explain that “nowadays nobody has time to listen to long stories and wait for them to end. So, a short story will keep them involved and won’t even take much time.”
With focus on achieving short term goals, RJ Kartik has proved his metal and will continue to appeal to the masses by bringing them closer reality and making them believe in the goodness of life despite of many challenges.
Team MediAvataar India wishes him all the best!