Broadcast/Cable Non-Live Viewing Sinks 55% From 2011-2021, Cable TV Reach Crashes

Adding to issues in linear TV reach, non-live scripted and unscripted broadcast and cable programming viewing continues to sink dramatically -- thanks to the growth of premium streaming TV usage.

Over the past 10 years, from 2011 to 2021, non-live programming has dropped by over 55% -- 3.7 billion minutes when viewed looking at total day C3 persons two years and older among Nielsen’s C3 measure (the average commercial minute rating plus three days of time-shifted viewing), according to analysis from MoffettNathanson Research. The total was 8.2 billion in 2011.

Looking specifically at broadcast, non-live programming declines have accelerated over the last few years -- 2019 to 2021 -- down 24% to 1.1 billion.

The only saving grace for broadcast and cable networks is live TV.



Over a ten-year period, live time viewed has remained virtually unchanged at 3.29 billion -- from 3.15 billion. Sports -- especially on broadcast networks, which have added programming -- continue to boost results. Sports programming total day time viewed is up 8% over the past three years.

TV advertisers continue to be concerned over reach -- especially linear TV cable networks.

Among the biggest losers over the last five years, according to MoffettNathanson Research, is CNN -- which has sunk 16.7% in reach as of Q4 2021 among viewers 18 years and older (from 37.7% reach in fourth quarter 2016).

After CNN comes AMC at 21.2% (down from 41.9%), followed by FX at 22.1 (from 42.5%); Disney Channel, 7.9% (from 27.8); Comedy Central, 13.9% (from 38.2); and TNT, 27.8% (from 45.9%).

Next story loading loading..