BET Analysis -November 2009

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NOVEMBER 2009 PRIMETIME SCHEDULE:

BET Primetime Schedule

SCHEDULING STRATEGIES:

While still moving away from the  music programming on which the network was founded, CMT has ceased stripping EXTREME MAKEOVER HOME EDITION at 8p each weeknight. The off-Fox series ARE YOU SMARTER THAN A FIFTH GRADER now strips at 8p, with the exception of Tuesday nights, followed by a variety of series blocks and specials, which have replaced Movies at 9p most weeknights..

Weekend strategy consists of slotting series and movies interspersed with Comedy and Music specials.

NOVEMBER 2009 PRIMETIME RATINGS ANALYSIS:

Live Primetime Ratings Comparison / November 2009 vs. November 2008  (% Change)

HH

W25-54

A25-54

Monday 8-11pm

0%

0%

0%

Tuesday 8-11pm

15%

8%

20%

Wednesday 8-11pm

13%

-14%

-7%

Thursday 8-11pm

11%

20%

8%

Friday 8-11pm

11%

-11%

-6%

Saturday 8-11pm

5%

8%

-20%

Sunday 8-11pm

-31%

-35%

-41%

MTWTFSS 8-11pm

0%

-6%

-13%

Source: The Nielsen Company's National Television Audience Sample

CMT has been moving towards light entertainment/reality and away from music for months now, although it still finds some of its highest ratings from music-oriented series and specials, such as this month's CMA AWARDS.

ARE YOU SMARTER THAN A 5TH GRADER remains the highest rated series on the Network for the second straight month, up 32% in HH over the Prime average.  HH were essentially flat with last November, but A25-54 dropped sharply on the Weekend, leading to an overall annual drop of 13% for the demo.

This year's version of DALLAS COWBOYS CHEERLEADERS, running Monday and Saturday, did not find favor with CMT viewers, finishing 32% below the Prime average.

CABLEU NEED TO KNOW:

Strategic Opportunities:

CMT prides itself on knowing its audience.  Focusing on music, but paying respect to all that is country, shows dealing with wholesome American interests are at the core of their schedule. DALLAS COWBOYS, TRICK MY TRUCK, COWBOY U and classic shows like DUKES OF HAZARD and HEE HAW have been replaced by mainstream-appeal Reality series such as NANNY 911, TRADING SPOUSES and EXTREME MAKEOVER: HOME EDI.

Think All-American when thinking of CMT. The CMT audience comes to the network for music, current and past, as well as programming that embodies the values found in the country music lifestyle.

In November 2009, the network announced that it intends to develop about a dozen comedy scripts with an eye toward having two sitcoms on the air next year.

Recent Acquistions have included  a variety of country-appeal Stand-Up comedy specials.

Any talent with a general appeal in the country genre offers an opportunity for series development.  Talent can be current country artists, rising stars, or legends from the past.

Series that cross over music genres and link the country community to other areas of the viewer's interest. This programming allows the network to broaden their core base of viewers and become more mainstream, attracting those light country enthusiasts.

Competition/elimination based series predominate the development slate.  Series with stories confined within the episode may have some appeal.  TRICK MY TRUCK and REDNECK WEDDING are two good examples.

Important:

Network could use some series with a longer shelf life.  Competition/elimination based formats are fun to watch, but don't have the strength to repeat down the road, something that's increasingly becoming a necessity on this network. Their latest need is for original family-appeal sitcoms.

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