Consumption patterns of local programmes on pay television in Kenya: a case study of Zuku Television
Liberalisation of airwaves and proliferation of broadcasting stations has led to increased competition in Kenyas’ broadcast industry (Oriare et al., 2010). In the pay television sector, stiff competition was witnessed with the entry of Wananchi Group having a brand name Zuku in 2009 (Kenya Film Commission 2010).This study was focused on the pay television broadcast sector in Kenya with Zuku as a service provider. The overall objective of the study was to establish consumption patterns of local content on Zuku television by subscribers. Specific objectives included to establish factors determining uptake of local Zuku content, establish subscribers’ perception of local content in terms of quality and story line, and establish responses of the service provider towards consumption patterns. The target population for this study was all Zuku subscribers in Nairobi. The study used primary data, which was collected using open-ended interviews and questionnaires and structured interviews with key informants. Secondary data sources were also consulted for more information. Data was presented by use of tables and figures. The study established that most Zuku subscribers were aware of all local programmes on its platform. It was further established that although local programmes awareness was high, consistency in viewership was poor. State House was established the most favourite local programme on Zuku platform because of its ability to connect with the viewership in terms of movie settings, fiction and drama, while Groove Theory was found to have the best video quality and Leo to have the best audio quality. Consistency of high viewership was found among subscribers of 25 to 30 years. Local programmes on Zuku were found to be family oriented hence people consumed them in a family setting. It was established that viewership of local programmes was concentrated on weekends more than weekdays among Zuku subscribers. The study recommended that Zuku needs to telecast fresh episodes of local programmes on weekends and slot repeats during weekdays. This study also recommended that Zuku needs to increase promotion of local content on its platform to increase awareness across all subscribers and come up with block and encounter programming strategies in order to retain and attract local content audience.