Cartoon Network - The Indian Experience



Themes: Brand Management
Period : 1999-2002
Organization : Cartoon Network
Pub Date : 2002
Countries : India
Industry : Media and Entertainment

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Case Code : BSTR035
Case Length : 10 Pages
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Cartoon Network - The Indian Experience| Case Study

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Background Note Contd...

It now became possible for TV networks to show their programs all over the world. The satellite TV industry soon established itself, reaching out to millions of subscribers all over the world. By the 1980s, TV had established itself as an effective and powerful medium of communication that had access to the drawing rooms of billions of households, and generated huge revenues through advertisements. The intense competition between TV companies, forced them to device new strategies to stay ahead. One such strategy was the development of programs that targeted specific sections of the community.

A few television channels focused on the children's segment, and began developing programs that would appeal to children. Since cartoons appeal to children across the world, channels like Cartoon Network, Nickelodeon, and Fox kids were set up to leverage this niche market.

Cartoon Network was first launched in the US in October 1992, by one of the world's leading media companies, Turner Broadcasting System3 (TBS). The channel offered animation programs from TBS's extensive library of more than 10,000 Warner Bros, MGM and Hanna-Barbera cartoons.

Over the next few years, the channel was launched in Europe, Latin America and Asia Pacific regions. Cartoon Network not only showed famous cartoons, but also original shows developed in-house such as Mike, Lu & Og, Ed, Edd n Eddy, Johnny Bravo, The Powerpuff Girls, Cartoon Cartoons and Dexter's Laboratory. These cartoons became extremely popular across the world, making Cartoon Network one of the leading children's entertainment channels during the 1990s.

In March 1998, Cartoon Network launched, a website offering cartoons on the net. According to Nielsen Net Ratings, stood as one of the world's top ten Websites, in terms of time spent on-site, during March 1998. Cartoon Network had huge advertising and promotional agreements with leading companies such as Reebok, McDonald's, Disney, and Nintendo.

According to Cartoon Network sources, in February 2001, the channels had a subscriber base of over 75 million in 145 countries. Analysts attributed the success of Cartoon Network to its appeal to the entire family, its original programming content and its advanced programming technologies.

Cartoon Network entered India in October 1995, sharing airtime with Turner Network Television (TNT). While Cartoon Network was shown in the morning slot (5 a.m.-9 p.m.), TNT showed classic Hollywood movies in the night slot (9 p.m-5 a.m.). In the late 1990s, Turner Classic Movies (TCM) replaced TNT, though the content remained the same. As the pioneer in the Indian cartoon and animation market, Cartoon Network quickly gained popularity and a huge fan following in major metros.

Cartoon Network in India

Prior to Cartoon Network's entry, Indian TV viewers could see cartoons only during a few time-slots on the state-owned Doordarshan and some other satellite TV channels. The channel realized that it would have to build cartoon/animation viewership virtually from scratch. In addition, it had the task of building its brand equity amidst the clutter of numerous satellite TV channels (Refer Exhibit II).

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3] TV industry major TBS is a part of the US-based media giant AOL/Time Warner. In addition to Cartoon Network, TBS runs TV networks such as CNN, TNT, Boomerang, Atlanta Braves, Atlanta Hawks, Atlanta Thrashers, and Goodwill Games.