Media stalwart, Mr. Pradeep Guha has been a pioneer of change and progress for the brands that he has been associated with. He conducted a Masterclass session with the students of School of Media and Communication to help them understand the evolution of the Media industry with the technological development that has seeped in over the years.
In 2005, Mr. Guha took over as the CEO of India’s largest satellite broadcasting network, Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd., where he helped the channel reclaim its erstwhile position of prominence in the Indian television arena.
In 2008, Pradeep joined as Managing Director of 9X Media Pvt. Ltd, during which the formerly debt ridden company not only saw a growth in revenue, but also launched four new music channels.
Mr. Guha is also associated with many bodies in the field of advertising, marketing and media. It was due to his initiative that India got empanelled at the Cannes Advertising Festival. He serves as India’s official representative to the Asian Federation of Advertising Associations and is the current Chairman of the Federation.
Mr. Guha started the session by sharing his initial professional experience in the media industry, when he started as a trainee with the Times Group, and went up to serving the organisation as the President and Director in the mid-70s. During his tenure, he built the Group’s flagship brand, The Times of India and magazines like Filmfare and Femina and the popular supplement The Bombay Times. Along with these, he also conceptualised glamourous on-ground activities like the Miss India pageant show and the Filmfare Awards. While discussing his contribution to the organization and growing exponentially as a professional by conceptualizing on-ground activities, he shared that he was greatly inspired from the west’s notion of marketing & branding onground activities and thus positioning these activities in the global scenario, to get both the activities and the associated brands, their share of recognition in the wold market.
While talking about ‘upsurgence and proliferation of Media, in today’s day and age, he shared his observation with the students, that ‘this media proliferation has made it extremely difficult for a brand to stay in the consumers’ mind for a longer duration, than it used to be in the early days’. He added, ‘To stay relevant and to be able to associate with consumers, extending a sense of ‘Experience’ has become the core. “In today’s world – ‘ing the thing’, is the mantra that a brand needs to follow to impact consumers.
While talking about content format, he made it clear to the students that ‘Short format content is the new game.’ Platforms like ‘Vine’, shorter length of films are the most preferred platform/content format that today’s ‘busy’ consumers prefer and opt for. He mentioned that, ‘Video’ is the dominant medium today, as consumers have become screen agnostic!’ He also discussed the emergence of ‘Second Screen’ that has the sole objective to create an impetus to be able to make the most of the consumer’s content consumption behaviour.
Talking about the impact of ‘Social Media’, he stated that ‘PR, what it used to be in the earlier days has transformed into the concept of Image Management’.
To end the session, he congratulated the students for getting trained in one of the most preferred content format, i.e. Video. He encouraged the students by sharing an insight that the concept of ‘Idea over Money’, has gained importance, which eventually has made it easier for the interested in gaining professional brilliance. He suggested students, ‘There are too many options available, but choose a few and stay with the one evolving’.
He generously appreciated the students and tweeted saying, “loved being there. Yours is the age group that teaches me every single day the dynamics of consumer life as it unfolds.”