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Networks See Steep Drop In (Sub)Prime Time Ratings

2021-01-06_10-57-50

 

Big news: Prime-time viewership for the major broadcast networks was down between 7% and 32% during the fall season.

YoY change in average prime-time viewers during fall season according to Nielsen:

1) ABC – ↓ 7%
2) NBC – ↓ 25%
3) Fox – ↓ 28%
4) CBS – ↓ 32%

2021-01-06_13-59-58

 

Interesting: COVID related protocols have added an estimated $300K in cost for every hour of production.

Top 10 TV networks by prime-time viewership according to Nielsen:

1) CBS – 5.6M
2) NBC – 5.0M
3) ABC – 4.5M
4) Fox – 4.2M
5) Fox News – 3.6M
6) MSNBC – 2.1M
7) CNN – 1.8M
8) ESPN – 1.5M
9) Univision – 1.5M
10) TLC – 1.4M

 

Flashback: Volatility Has Some TV Advertisers Seeing (And Paying) Double

Why this matters: This reflects two big shifts that are just starting.

Big shift #1: Time spent consuming video is at a record level, but consumers have access to more content than ever.  The explosion of choice has led to fragmented viewership.

A good example is the largest series finales of each decade.  The largest finale of the 2010s (Game of Thrones) was watched by 82% fewer people than the record holder (M.A.S.H.).

2021-01-06_14-14-50

 

Big shift #2: Scripted programming is better suited for on-demand (streaming, etc.), which is why TV viewership for this type of content is dropping faster than live sports.

% of total viewership within 35 days, according to Nielsen:

1) Same day – 63%
2) Delayed within 7 days – 29%
3) Delayed between 8 and 35 days – 8%

2021-01-06_16-21-29

Media viewer age for NBC dramas according to Nielsen:

1) Digital – 37.4
2) Linear – 56.3

2021-01-06_16-26-49

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