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E! Analysis - January 2010 - Broadcasting & Cable

E! Analysis - January 2010

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DECEMBER 2009 PRIMETIME SCHEDULE:

* Bold denotes programming change

SCHEDULING STRATEGIES:

Even with the cluttered programming on cable on Sunday nights, E! is not afraid to air one of their best originals like  KEEPING UP WITH THE KARDASHIANS or THE GIRLS NEXT DOOR.  Most of their schedule varies night by night, week to week.  It is rather looked upon as if you are watching the brand, and not appointment viewing. 

This cable network has developed a successful, highly profitable take on the old broadcast network formula -- find and create accessible stars and watch the viewers pour in, but for fractions of the cost of a single episode of a network drama.

JANUARY 2010 PRIMETIME RATINGS ANALYSIS:

Live Primetime Ratings Comparison / January 2010 vs. January 2009  (% Change)

Yearly % change*   

HH

M18-49

F18-49

P18-49

Monday 8-11pm

0%

25%

13%

17%

Tuesday 8-11pm

20%

50%

50%

40%

Wednesday 8-11pm

60%

75%

83%

80%

Thursday 8-11pm

17%

0%

13%

0%

Friday 8-11pm

14%

0%

20%

11%

Saturday 8-11pm

33%

-17%

25%

14%

Sunday 8-11pm

117%

50%

144%

129%

MTWTFSS 8-11pm

33%

20%

50%

29%

Source: The Nielsen Company's National Television Audience Sample

Overall, Monday-Sunday primetime averages for ratings, share and delivery were up compared to one year ago, January 2009.  Share was up +33% and delivery was up +36%.  Adults 18-49 were up +29% in delivery overall.  In fact, E! delivered a record breaking month, posting its most-watched month in the network's history, driven by its hit series KEEPING UP WITH THE KARDASHIANS and red carpet coverage; in addition to new record-setting numbers from E!'s topical series.  THE MOVIES WE LOVE franchise was up +22% in overall delivery, and TRUE HOLLYWOOD STORY was up a substantial +71%.   Additionally, January 2010 marked E!'s most-watched primetime ever, with an increase of +42% over its January 2009 delivery. 

Comparing last month's primetime averages, January 2010 was also E!'s highest-rated month ever across key measures including the network's target Adult 18-49 demo, and posted double-digit gains over last year's delivery.  Last month E! unveiled new series and season premieres.  The 4th season of KEEPING UP WITH THE KARDASHIANS has been posting a series best and setting new records for the network.  In fact, on Sunday, January 3rd, E! achieved its most-watched telecast in the network's history with over 4.3 million total viewers (E! press).  This signature series shows no signs of slow-down or erosion.  Rather each new season has been more popular than the next.

Season #2 of KENDRA also premiered last month to steller ratings, but this month was down in key demos. GUILIANA & BILL, an original from sister network Style, was also down this month.  Newcomer series BANK OF HOLLYWOOD which also had a December premiere wasn't able to hold onto its lead-in numbers last month, and had trouble again this month.  BANK was down -26% in overall delivery.  This new original series from Ryan Seacrest Productions only has an eight episode committment.  And considering how its been performing, we wouldn't be surprised if it didn't get picked up for a second season.

GIRLS NEXT DOOR which concluded its 6th season last month, was down overall this month, but then again it was in repeats.  Even so, GIRLS NEXT DOOR is another E! original that is among the coveted Women 18-34 demo, and has been a breakout signature show for the network.

Besides KARDASHIANS, another highlight of the programming line-up this month was E!'s  red carpet coverage hosted by Ryan Seacrest and Giuliana Rancic.  THE 2010 GOLDEN GLOBE AWARDS and THE 2010 GRAMMY AWARDS.  Even though both aired prior to primetime, we wanted to make note that these two series coverages outperformed last year's numbers.  Both total viewers and primetime delivery averages well exceeded prior years. 

E!'s FASHION POLICE franchise, hosted by Joan Rivers this year, also had scored significant gains this year.  FASHION POLICE: THE 2010 GOLDEN GLOBE AWARDS on Monday, January 18th at 10pm delivered the most-watched FASHION POLICE in over 5 years, and was up +50% in total viewers over last year's show.  FASHION POLICE: THE 2010 SAG AWARDS on Sunday, January 24th at 9pm also exceeded last year's show, up +12% among total viewers.   Joan Rivers, entertainment icon, returned this year, and was joined by other E! personalities.  Rivers certainly put her magic touch back into these shows this year. 

Programming that continue to be the staples for the channel include THE SOUP, TRUE HOLLYWOOD STORY, E! INVESTIGATES, and ON E! this month.  THE SOUP was up +25% share.  In fact, THE SOUP on Fridays at 10pm was up +13% in total viewers over last year.  TRUE HOLLYWOOD STORY was up +50%.  ON E! was down -10% in delivery.  And E! INVESTIGATES was up +29% with Women 18-49 share.  E! News programming overall continues to remain a destination for celebrity and entertainment news, and the backbone for a lot of the network programming schedule.   In fact, E! continues to reign as the destination for topical entertainment news, with gains from its year ago delivery.

Additional programming for the month to note were THE MOVIES WE LOVE franchise, which was down -22% share.  Repeats of solid, contemporary titles aired this month, but the the network's focus once again has been on series. January is also a month of mid-season replacement series that all the networks have to compete with, and Fox's premiere of American Idol season #9, doesn't help either.

Rounding out the month, E!'s classic tabloid-labeled specials add to the primetime line-up.  There is only one to note this month - 15 Most Notorious Women.  Some of these specials are franchises in their own right, and they keep the viewers coming back month after month.

CABLEU NEED TO KNOW:

E! has excelled at creating the next celebrity from scratch through cheaper, unscripted reality TV.  

E!'s formula is to create an alternate universe of reality-based celebrities who have become just as famous as the sitcom and drama stars in network prime-time, but with more impact on E!'s brand and bottom line than any sitcom, medical procedural or legal drama could for broadcast.

A lot of E!'s original reality programming starts with a family or an ensemble piece.  Its not about one person, but rather a group.  As in the case of the KARDASHIANS.  KARDASHIANS allow the E! viewers to vicariously live the fantasy of its stars but also points to specific touchstones that are very relatable to viewers.  E! has been making the move toward adding original scripted programming into its programming line-up mix.

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