Singing The Blues: Fox Cancels 'X Factor'

Fox has cancelled  “The X Factor” after three seasons -- the once highly touted singing competition show positioned as a wannabe “American Idol” show.

While the show did moderately well in its first season -- in the fall 2011 -- it never rose to the status of “Idol,” which was the top-rated show in network prime-time television for nearly a decade.
 
“X Factor” premiered with some Nielsen 12 million viewers, far short of the 20 million plus viewers that “Idol” was pulling in. In its first season, “Factor” averaged a 3.7 rating among key 18-49 viewers. For its final performances in Season Three, it tallied around 6 million viewers.

Among 18-49 viewers, it averaged a 1.7 rating -- down 41% from Season Two.

“X Factor” was also positioned to be a major advertising vehicle for marketers -- just like “American Idol.”
 
In one of the bigger sponsorship deals for the show, PepsiCo outbid Coca-Cola (an “American Idol” sponsor) to become a key show sponsor before “X Factor’s” premiere season. Media buyers estimate that Pepsi spent an eye-popping $60 million a year to hold that position in the show.

Chevrolet was also an initial major sponsor. In its final season, Honda and Procter & Gamble came aboard in major sponsorship deals.

For “American Idol,” Coca-Cola, Ford Motor Company and AT&T were the three major sponsors of the show for many years. Media estimates are that each "Idol" sponsor -- at the top levels of the show -- brought in deals in the $50 million to $60 million-a-year range.

Simon Cowell, both a show creator and longtime judge on "X-Factor" and “American Idol” judge, will return as a judge on the U.K. version of the show.

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