A&E Analysis - Broadcasting & Cable

A&E Analysis

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SCHEDULING STRATEGIES:

A&E's primetime lineup features nearly 7 nights a week of original series in themed nights.  STORAGE WARS and spin-offs STORAGE WARS continues to be a dominating force in the schedule, airing 4 times a week in November.  Crime is the theme for the Thursday night lineup, which features THE FIRST 48.  Other reality originals air on Mondays, while Fridays in October was reserved for a lineup of CRIMINAL MINDS. Sunday nights have shifted from scripted originals to more STORAGE.

NOVEMBER PRIMETIME RATINGS ANALYSIS:

Live+SD Primetime Ratings Comparison / November 2012 vs. November 2011 (% Change)

HH

A18-49

A25-54

Monday 8-11pm

-14%

-9%

-6%

Tuesday 8-11pm

-32%

-44%

-36%

Wednesday 8-11pm

12%

30%

39%

Thursday 8-11pm

-3%

2%

0%

Friday 8-11pm

22%

65%

60%

Saturday 8-11pm

-6%

-15%

-9%

Sunday 8-11pm

-5%

15%

20%

MTWTFSS 8-11pm

-4%

2%

5%

Source: The Nielsen Company's National Television Audience Sample

November was a relatively flat month for A&E. While returning series dominated the primetime lineup, there were almost no series premieres during the month of November. Overall HH demos fell 4%, but the key younger demographics saw signs of growth, and several nights of original series saw increased compared to November 2011. And the network is skewing younger, and more male than it was a year ago; Females 18-49 were down 4% and Females 25-54 were flat, while Men 18-49 and Men 25-54 saw increases of 10% and 12%, as shows like DUCK DYNASTY and BILLY THE EXTERMINATOR were in heavy rotation for November.

Mondays in November were down 14% in overall HH viewers compared to last year, and the younger demos were down as well. Mondays continue to be comprised of a lineup of more female-skewing programs - HOARDERS and INTERVENTION were both on the schedule on Mondays. HOARDERS saw an increase in viewers of 11% compared to November 2011, but nothing else on Monday night schedule really resonated, and the night is the weakest of the week for A&E.

Tuesday nights in November were also down from last year, with overall viewers dropping 32% compared to November 2011. The night is comprised completely of STORAGE WARS, which was down 30% compared to its performance last year. But look for this trend to change, as A&E rolls out STORAGE WARS: NEW YORK in December 2012.

Wednesdays in November were up 12% compared to last year, as DUCK DYNASTY and STORAGE WARS rotated in primetime throughout the month. While STORAGE scores well above average, numbers couldn't come close to touching DUCK DYNASTY's stellar deliveries - in many cases, more than doubling average for overall HH viewers. DUCK DYNASTY drove Wednesday nights up strongly in the male demographics, and the night was the strongest of the week for A&E.

Thursday nights in November featured a lineup of A&E's signature crime show THE FIRST 48, paired with series BEYOND SCARED STRAIGHT. The night was down 3% in overall HH viewers compared to Noveber 2011.  The show itself is showing signs of wear - overall viewers are down 4% compared to last year.  The only demo to hit average on Thursday nights were Females 18-49

A normally crime-oriented schedule on Friday nights gave way to marathons of DUCK DYNASTY in November. Because of this scheduling change, Friday nights in November saw tremendous month-to-month as well as year-to-year growth, especially among the male demos. The night outperformed average and was the youngest-skewing of the week by several years.

Saturday and Sunday's lineups in November featured STORAGE WARS, PARKING WARS, and BILLY THE EXTERMINATOR. Overall numbers were down moderately for both nights, though several episodes of STORAGE WARS outperformed average.

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