The success of the reality talent show Talentadong Pinoy couldn't have been more timely. Earning the lion's share of the credit is actor-host Ryan Agoncillo, whose hard work and dedication, along with the program's staff and crew, helped propel Talentadong Pinoy to the top of the TV rating contest.
"You're helping make our job a lot easier," TV5 senior vice president and head of brand management Jasper Evangelist recalled telling Ryan backstage.
Entering its first year since overhauling the network's overall image from ABC-5 to TV5, the Tonyboy Cojuangco-owned station has steadily climbed the ratings ladder, thanks mainly to an aggressive campaign anchored on its objective of offering alternative shows outside the usual menu being offered by the two dominating giant networks—ABS-CBN and GMA-7.
"When we launched as a station, ang pinaka-goal kasi is to parang bawat gabi, bago. There's something new every day. Which runs counter to the teleserye mentality na it's the same every day. Kasi, TV5 is here to offer variety and choice to the viewers, 'yon yung priority namin," Jasper explained to the entertainment press in a recent conversation held at Cravings restaurant, Shangri-La Plaza Mall in Mandaluyong City.
STICKING WITH RYAN. Evangelista's backstage remark to Ryan was both understated and well-founded. Last July 11, Talentadong Pinoy broke the so-called longstanding "duopoly" by garnering a week's best 26.2 percent rating, good enough to notch the top spot.
The show's strong showing is indicative of the direction the network wants to pursue both in terms of marketing and viewership.
"May team din ako and minu-monitor din namin to make sure na kumakagat pa nga rin sa masa," said Jasper. He added: "And so far, it's very successful like it hit 45 audience share last weekend."
As for Ryan's status as Talentadong Pinoy's host, Jasper assured the viewers that the husband of award-winning actress Judy Ann Santos will continue to headline the program, this despite his other commitments, particularly with ABS-CBN's weekend primetime sitcom, George and Cecil.
"Ryan has been very supportive for TV5," said Jasper. "Nagka-trade screening kami sa mga ad agencies and he was there to host it."
MORE FRANCHISE SHOWS. Talentadong Pinoy's accomplishment has consequently boosted the network's other offering, prompting Evangelista to acknowledge Ryan's show as "clearly the number one program we have right now."
One of the beneficiaries of Talentadong Pinoy's success in terms of figures is Vic Sotto's Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?. Interestingly, Vic's game show even surpassed Talentadong Pinoy's rating figures during its maiden season.
Jasper explained that it took Ryan's show some time before hitting a 28 percent audience share when it was first launched on August 16, 2008. Vic's show, on the other hand, has raked in the mentioned figure right on its first season.
"One good thing about franchises, may equity na. There's brand equity already so it's easier to sell in a way na kilalang-kilala na agad ng tao o ng viewers [ang show]. You just have to nail down a good host na babagay dun sa franchise."
Vic was the network's first choice to host the program. "Fortunately, he's a fan of the show so it made things a whole lot easier," revealed Jasper.
"Tapos when we did the pilot, dry run, he breezed through the rehearsals. Normally, matagal 'yan, mga couple of hours. Sabi nga nung ibang direktor, ang bilis. Kasi he [Vic] watches the show, so alam niya kung paano dumiskarte and he's having fun, lalo na ngayon."
TV5 will extend Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?—a clear indication of the show's success with the local viewing public.
The accomplishment of the local version of the international popular game show has likewise encouraged the network to scout other titles open for licensing to fill up and further strengthen TV5's programming.
"Franchising works depending how you handle it," Jasper mentioned. "Depending how you adapt it to local television. Kasi hindi naman lahat ng franchise successful. Again, what's important is how you incorporate it to the local environment."