Must-Stay TV: Longtime Viewers Remain Network Loyal

Will TV viewers continue to be loyal to a network brand -- even when their favorite TV shows end?

In a study, Rentrak Corp. Factfinder analysis showed that viewers of popular-ending TV shows can remain with a network. The TV research company discovered these results after surveying viewers of ABC's "Lost" and Fox's "24" -- two longtime shows that ended their series runs last season.

Rentrak created a "Lost Viewer Index" and a "24 Viewer Index," comparing loyal levels of "Lost" and "24" viewers to television viewing of the total population today.

For the first two weeks of the new fall broadcast season, it found that "Lost" and "24" viewers remained loyal to ABC and Fox on Tuesday nights between 9 p.m. and 10 p.m., when those respective shows aired.

For example, viewers of "Lost" were 73% more likely than the general TV viewing population to watch ABC's "Dancing with the Stars," which also runs on Tuesday night. Former "24" viewers were 52% more likely to watch "Lone Star," Fox's short-lived series of this season, which ran on Tuesday night.



The data also cut across other time periods and competing networks. "Lost" viewers were 93% more likely to watch ABC's "Modern Family" and 89% more likely to watch ABC's "Grey's Anatomy."

"Lost" viewers were also 25% more likely to watch NBC's "Dateline NBC," 24% more likely to watch Fox's "Raising Hope" and 20% more likely to watch "Running Wilde."

Ex-"24" watchers were 64% more likely to watch CBS crime drama "NCIS: Los Angeles," 50% more likely also watch the network's "Criminal Minds" and 39% more likely to watch CBS' "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation."

Bruce Goerlich, chief research officer of Rentrak Corp., stated: "Viewer segment targets can be defined based on any combination of series or network viewers and allow for better promotion and counter programming to maintain or attract new viewers."

2 comments about "Must-Stay TV: Longtime Viewers Remain Network Loyal".
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  1. Douglas Ferguson from College of Charleston, November 17, 2010 at 8:11 a.m.

    Back in the 1980s, research on this phenomenon called it "viewer availability" -- which means people who are predisposed to watching a given show and network would keep the habit because it fit their routine, without regard to content. If this new study begs us to believe that particular shows are better at promoting viewer availability, I didn't read any evidence here. Sometimes people interpret what they want to believe.

  2. Kevin Kolbe from FOX 50, November 17, 2010 at 2:47 p.m.

    Interesting article except "24" has aired on Monday's for the last few years not Tuesday as noted. Same for "Lone Star", Monday's not Tuesdays.

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