'Football' Helps Kick NBC Into First Place

by , Nov 23, 2012, 1:07 PM
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Sunday-Night-Football-2012-AWhile NBC may claim to be No. 1 so far this season, when looking at all "program" ratings, other networks also tout some top results: ABC, for one, says it is No. 1 in ratings in one key TV category for advertisers.

ABC says its season-to-date rating when looking at the C3 results, the commercial ratings plus three days of time-shifted viewing, is tops among the big four networks in non-sports programming.

From Sept. 23 to Nov. 4th, ABC earned a Nielsen 2.2 rating; CBS and Fox were both at a 2.1 rating; and NBC had a 2.0 rating.

Typically, many media buyers make separate deals when it comes to sports -- especially in regular prime-time programming. Still, other TV analysts say sports on TV -- even in prime time -- should not be a separate factor since, among other things, it contributes to the overall health of a network, including providing key promotion time for scripted TV and reality TV prime-time programming.

NBC's "The Voice" and other new shows like "Revolution" and "Go On" have given the network a strong fall. But perhaps its biggest gains so far come from its three hours of prime time a week devoted to "Sunday Night Football," now the highest-rated prime-time TV series. This has helped put the network into the top spot for the first time in nearly a decade -- after surveying program ratings.

Looking at ratings of live programs plus seven days of time-shifting (and live-plus-same-day numbers for the most recent two weeks), NBC is in first place among 18-49 viewers after eight weeks: a 3.2 average rating. CBS is second with a 2.8 rating average; ABC was third at a 2.6; Fox was fourth with a 2.4; and The CW had an 0.8 adults 18-49 rating average. (Each adults 18-49 rating point is a percentage of the adults 18-49 U.S. TV population and equals 1.265 million adults 18-49.)

As it has been for many years, CBS again claims a top spot for overall average viewer prime-time totals: 11.7 million viewers; followed by ABC at 9.1 million; NBC, 8.6 million; Fox, 6.9 million; and CW, 1.8 million.

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