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November 28, 2017 11:47 AM UTC

Local TV Ratings Drop; Will Campaign Budgets Adjust?

  • 1 Comments
  • by: Colorado Pols
Oooh…look at all the fancy knobs

There’s bad news today for local television news stations in Colorado, as Joanne Ostrow reports for “The Know” (which is connected to the Denver Post):

TV stations suffered market-wide, double-digit declines in late newscast viewership in the November 2017 ratings sweeps. The decline in people using television, a factor for a decade, continues.

“That’s something that’s scary for all of us,” KMGH news director Holly Gauntt said.

All of Denver’s late newscasts lost viewers: KUSA-Channel 9, while still the market leader, was down 28 percent at 10 p.m. KDVR-Channel 31, was down 12 percent at 9 p.m., down 16 percent at 9:30 p.m. and down 16 percent at 10 p.m. KCNC-Channel 4 saw a 20 percent drop at 10 p.m. KMGH-Channel 7 dropped 22 percent at 10 p.m.

KUSA’s decline of 28 percent, down from a 3.09 rating last November to 2.23 this year, translates to a loss of nearly 15,000 viewers.

We probably don’t need to tell you that the primary reason for the ratings decline is the proliferation of digital devices connected to the Internet tubes. The drop in local TV viewership is not a new phenomenon, of course, but the steady rate at which eyeballs are straying from televisions in the Denver/Boulder market (the 17th largest in the country) could remake the landscape of local political advertising at some point in the near future. Television advertising is a top priority for political campaigns, and we wouldn’t expect a significant change in 2018 — big money campaigns, like many organizations, can be slow to react to market changes — but we wouldn’t be surprised if things start to look different in 2020.

The news isn’t all bad for local TV, however, as Ostrow continues:

On the plus side, KUSA proved that patience is a virtue when it comes to “Next with Kyle Clark.” That non-traditional 6 p.m. news show had a resurgence in the ratings, beating the competition with a 2.26 rating.

Considering that 9News at 10:00 pm has a 2.88 rating, “Next With Kyle Clark” is doing well to nab a 2.26 figure for November.

Comments

One thought on “Local TV Ratings Drop; Will Campaign Budgets Adjust?

  1. This is the financial reason net neutrality is being pushed now. If people can get internet news and content on their devices, they don't need to pay the outrageous rates cable companies charge for "bundles".

    It's a power struggle between two modes of accessing information and entertainment. Survivors will be the ones best marketing their content for portable consumption.

    Even though Big Cable is failing to convince people to sit and watch their preferred channels, the market price structure Big Cable created will be grafted onto internet device-carried news if net neutrality is destroyed. That is, people will pay for "bundles" of internet content – and some will just not be available "in your area".

    This truly is an existential crisis for journalism.

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