Where Broadcast TV is Headed

September 3, 2013 | Blog | By Lightbox

An article from MediaPost last week by Wayne Friedman caught my eye…

Here are the highlights:

  • NBC, ABC Tie For Summer Ratings, by Wayne Friedman, Aug 27, 2013, 3:44 PM
  • Summer TV ratings are now a neck-and-neck race — with ABC and NBC tied for the lead.
  • With 13 weeks of summer ratings now completed, both NBC and ABC are averaging a Nielsen 1.34 rating among 18-49 viewers. ABC has maintained the best results — only losing 2% from the summer session of a year ago. NBC is down 54%.
  •  ABC benefited from the NBA playoffs in early June; NBC is still seeing gains from its “America’s Got Talent.” But it has lost much ground due to unfavorable comparisons to NBC’s early London Summer Olympics coverage. Nielsen summer results stem from May 27 through August 25.
  • Fox is next, at a 1.13 average rating among 18-49 viewers — down 18% from a year ago.
  • So far this season, CBS has been the only network to witness improvement overall — up 3% to a 1.11 average 18-49 rating. CBS has picked up big viewership from pre-season NFL games. Given that, it leads all networks with a 1.5 average rating for the week ending August 25.
  • The week before Fox had two pre-season NFL games — and it led all networks with a 1.25 rating for the week ending August 18.

Now for my perspective…

Starting with the title, really? Really?  Wayne, is that all you saw in these results, that NBC and ABC are tied for first?!  How about these alternatives:

  • Big 4 Networks Lose 27% of their Summer Audience in One Year!
  • Big 4 Networks Scrape the Bottom of the Barrel with an Average Summer A18-49 Rating of 1.2!!
  • NBC Loses Over Half their Summer Audience in One Short Year!!!

Yikes!  This is why clients are forced to look for alternatives outside of their traditional media set.  It’s really hard to meet ratings goals when the ratings just aren’t there.

Here’s where you can find the original article: