When Kaumudi Mahajan joined Star from MICA Ahmedabad, her bosses asked her to do nothing but watch television. For 7 hours every day for two weeks Mahajan watched the entire range of Hindi entertainment channels and made copious notes about her insights. She was tasked with making 15-minute presentations daily about what she had learned. As a self-proclaimed “studious” teenager, Mahajan did not grow up watching TV but was instantly hooked. “I am now an addict,” she laughs. “I feel extremely entertained watching Hindi and Marathi soaps.”
Ten years later, Mahajan has won a Star Excellence Award and heads marketing at Star Pravah, our Marathi general entertainment channel with a lean yet power-packed core team. In December 2014, Mahajan took on the tough mandate of transforming the channel. When she stepped in, she knew that the most crucial challenge was to understand how to uniquely distinguish Pravah as Marathi and cater to that sentiment compared to what every Hindi channel was offering.
Mahajan and her team met over 100 viewers across age groups from four towns and four villages across Maharashtra. They met 12 experts ranging from a historian to a divorce lawyer, a writer to a sociologist, with the focused goal of capturing the pulse of Maharashtra. The results were fascinating. “We found out that while it’s an intelligent, forward-looking and educated community, it’s also looking for bold inspiration,” Mahajan explains.