National Geographic Channel Performance/Schedule Analysis - July 2007

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PERFORMANCE/SCHEDULE ANALYSIS

(Updated as of August 23, 2007)

TARGET DEMOGRAPHIC:

Adults 25-54

JULY 2007 PRIMETIME SCHEDULE

TOP PRIMETIME SHOWS:

Most of the National Geographic Channel's lineup is one-offs, though a couple series Strands were above the net's average this monthWhile INSIDE was the top series (thanks to PERU), two NGC PRESENTS (both LOCKDOWNs:  PREDATORS BEHIND BARS; GANGLAND) were the top 2 telecasts.  DOG WHISPERER was right up there in the Top 10 telecasts, as well as three more PRESENTS (ANCIENT ASTEROID; HOOKED! MONSTER FISH; NEFERTITI AND THE LOST DYNASTY's two telecasts.

SCHEDULING STRATEGIES:

All over the map, that is to say, filled with one-offs, or anthology series or "Various".   Thursday is more or less big, guy stuff or science.  Friday is animals and pretty much all DOG WHISPERER at that., Saturday  is now officially all WILD"¦but that's about all we can see.

PROGRAM/SCHEDULE CHANGES:

JUNE - JULY:

As always, if anything moved around, it was pretty much a "Various",  a Stunt or an NGC PRESENTS that went in there.  WHAT HAPPENED is now in Tuesdays at 9pm, followed by CRITICAL SITUATION at 10pm"¦.most of the time.  DOG WHISPERER is Friday night and Saturday is now WILD.

AND BEYOND:

Isolating every series change to "Various" would be a nightmare"¦but that's kinda how the schedule comes together.  The essence of the Nat Geo strategy is to run a good deal of one-offs in or out of existing Strands.  Hardly ever does one week resemble the next.

TABOO returns August 5 at 9 and 10pm, Sundays;  also Wednesday at 10pm, its primary time slot.  Monday gets some HUNTER AND HUNTEDs, also in Stunt form.  IS IT REAL? is on quite a bit on Tuesdays, in various times, sometimes all night.  DANGEROUS ENCOUNTERS gets a full night on Tuesday, 9/11.  Friday, 10PM gets IS IT REAL? too.

Having said that, and in addition to the changes listed above, here are the one-offs upcoming (many repeats):

NAT GEO PRESENTS  on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Sundays-    TONADO INTERCEPT/TWISTER CHASERS; INSIDE EXTRAORDINARY HUMANS; MYSTERY OF THE ROMANOVS; DOWNED PILOT; DAYTONA BIKER RALLY; REAL ROSWELL: SAN QUENTIN UNLOCKED; IMPOSSIBLE ISLANDS; INCREDIBLE ISLANDS; IMPOSSIBLE HOTEL; more LOCKDOWNS (GANG WAR; WOMEN BEHIND BARS; TOTAL CONTROL); PREHISTORIC PREDATORS; LOCKED UP ABROAD: VENEZUELA (premieres August 22, 9pm) INSIDE 9/11 UPDATE (on August 26); SPIES, LIES AND THE SUPERBOMB; INSIDE THE GREEN BERETS; INSIDE AL QUEDA (premieres August 27, 10pm); ULTIMATE TSUNAMI/TORNADO.EARTHQUAKE (a troika that's worked before); HAWAII SUPER FERRY; THE SOUTH POLE PROJECT.
For the WILD, EXPLORER and other animal strands, here's what they cover: PENGUIN SAFARI; POLAR BEARS; KING BEAR; ULTIMATE HIPPO; REVENGE OF THE ELEPHANTS; ULTIMATE BEAR; AMERICA/AUSTRALIA'S DEADLY DOZEN; CLASH OF THE CAIMANS; THUNDERBEAAST; PREHISTORIC PREDATORS (WOLF; SABERTOOTH); HYENAS AT WAR;

Getting the push on the website lately:  TABOO; INSIDE AL QUEDA and LOCKED UP ABROAD: VENEZUELA.

YEAR AGO/BIG PICTURE:

National Geographic Channel was steady in HH and male shares from July 2006.  Women, however, were up a third in both 18-49 and 25-54 women. The network got younger 4 of 7 nights and had two nights of growth versus one going down, and not much at that.

The THRILL ZONE Strand was the top gainer from last year:  HH shares up 33%; young men up 20% and women up 50%, on what's supposed to be a macho Strand.  WILD grew, too, fueled by males.  DOG WHISPERER is still a good story:  up nicely in women from last year.

JULY 2007 PRIMETIME RATINGS ANALYSIS:

Nat Geo reported some good news this month:  The premiere of TABOO , Sunday, August 5 (9and 10pm) posted a .5 Adult 25-54 rating with 2.7 million total viewers and a median age of 36.1.  (Nielsen numbers from National Geographic press release.)  We'll cover this (and, of course, more) next time around.

Here's our take:

Similar to  the year-to-year story, the June-to-July 2007 growth was modest up in women by a third, with some growth in either HH or demos every night (sometimes all three), no small fete as  HUTs are down as the summer is in full swing.

Monday - Women fueled the growth, up 50% in that category, leading to a 25% rise in HH.  Second strongest night of the week in young men.  The DOG WHISPERER night helped, as did the other above-the-night performance from ANCIENT ASTEROID.

Tuesday - Flat night in HH; down in the rest of the demos.  This combo dragged it down:  GETTING GOTTI/OJ SIMPSON TRIAL/OPERATION CERTAIN DEATH.  WHEN THE VOLCANO BLEW was good, but the DOG WHISPERER night was better.

Wednesday- A night of totally equal shares in HH and all demos.  Increases in women from June.  Best performers:  LOCKED UP ABROAD: PERU; MIAMI DRUG CARTEL; ARYAN BROTHERHOOD.  DOG WHISPERER night built to a 10pm above-average number.  A 4th of July Stunt (LIFE ON MARS/ATLANTIS/ANCIENT ASTRONAUTS) was below the night's average.

Thursday - More women here, too, thanks pretty much to the DOG WHISPERER night.  Only ULTIMATE FACTORIES: FERRARI and AUSTRALIA'S DEADLY DOZEN indexed higher than the night.

Friday- - Third highest HH shares of the week; up across the board, good news for DOG WHISPERER, which covered all three of the four Fridays of July. (it's fourth season kicks in in September). But that NGC FRIDAY Stunt of BUDWEISER; SCIENCE OF SUMMER; MOONSHINE didn't hurt either.

Saturday-- Lowest night of the week, not unusual for any network on Saturday.  All WILD now, and the viewers' favorite episodes were: DEADLY DOZEN AFRICA and a SHARK NIGHT (pre-Discovery's SHARK WEEK by one night) with SHARK BATTLEGROUND; WHALE ATTACK; PLANET CARNIVOIRE SHARKS turning in the best
Saturday all month.

Sunday - Night #1 for Nat Geo, and it was three LOCKDOWNS that did the trick (INSIDE MAXIMUM SECURITY; GANGLAND; PREDATORS BEHIND BARS).  But HOOKED!  MONSTER FISH turned in another standout performance it's a repeat of a repeat, like a lot of cable).  NEFERTITI AND THE LOST DYNASTY actually out-performed the more heavily promoted ENGINEERING EGYPT that followed.

LATEST ACQUISITIONS:

None announced.

LATEST PROGRAM RENEWALS:

TABOO 13 x 60  Produced by Beyond Productions; DOG WHISPERER, EXPLORER, FIGHT SCIENCE, NAKED SCIENCE, ULTIMATE FACTORIES

LATEST PROGRAM CANCELLATIONS:

None announced.

ADDITIONAL SHOWS CURRENTLY AIRING:

BE THE CREATURE, DEADLY DOZEN, LIVING WILD, MOST EXTREME JOBS, TABOO, TOTALLY WILD, ULTIMATE DISASTER, UNDERCOVER HISTORY, HUNTER AND HUNTED, PLANET CARNIVORE, MEGA MOVERS; MEGA STRUCTURES, DANGEROUS ENCOUNTERS; NAKED SCIENCE

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