E! Analysis - May 2010

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MAY 2010 PRIMETIME SCHEDULE:

* Bold denotes programming change

SCHEDULING STRATEGIES:

Even with the cluttered programming on cable on Sunday nights, E! is not afraid to air one of their best originals like  KEEPING UP WITH THE KARDASHIANS or THE GIRLS NEXT DOOR.  Most of their schedule varies night by night, week to week.  It is rather looked upon as if you are watching the brand, and not appointment viewing. 

This cable network has developed a successful, highly profitable take on the old broadcast network formula -- find and create accessible stars and watch the viewers pour in, but for fractions of the cost of a single episode of a network drama.

MAY 2010 PRIMETIME RATINGS ANALYSIS:

Live Primetime Ratings Comparison / May 2010 vs. May 2009  (% Change)

Yearly % change*   

HH

M18-49

F18-49

P18-49

Monday 8-11pm

0%

-17%

10%

0%

Tuesday 8-11pm

20%

0%

43%

17%

Wednesday 8-11pm

17%

25%

13%

17%

Thursday 8-11pm

0%

25%

13%

17%

Friday 8-11pm

-13%

0%

-29%

-10%

Saturday 8-11pm

14%

0%

9%

0%

Sunday 8-11pm

43%

33%

64%

44%

MTWTFSS 8-11pm

17%

20%

10%

13%

Source: The Nielsen Company's National Television Audience Sample

Overall, Monday-Sunday primetime averages for ratings, share and delivery were up compared to one year ago, May 2009.  Share was up +17%, and delivery was up +9%.  Women 18-49 were up +10% share overall.  E! celebrated its 20th birthday with its highest-rated and most-watched May ever drawing in 373,000 Total Viewers in Total Day.  It performed +5% ahead of last year's benchmark thanks to its hit reality shows and topical programming.  E! also garnered its most-watched May among Total Viewers in Primetime, averaging 561,000 Total Viewers, up +12% over a year ago. (E! press)

Signature programming THE SOUP was up +11%, SOUP PRESENTS was up +43%, and TRUE HOLLYWOOD STORY were up +41% share from one year ago.

Comparing last month's primetime averages, ratings, share and delivery were on par from last month.  Both share and delivery fell flat.  However, Adults 25-54 were up +17% share.  Once again the primetime line-up had a more consistent scheduling strategy on a nightly basis.  This month there were stacks of programming blocks that carried over from week to week.  There were no new season premieres this month, but there was one very "special" special. On Friday, May 28th E! aired E! Celebrates 20 Years of the Celebrity Revolution.  A stunted night of programming that looked back on 20 years of pop culture and the biggest stories that defined entertainment.  In addition, E! aired celebratory episodes of its signature franchises during its birthday month.  

And speaking of signature series the 2nd season of KENDRA continues to be a success on Sunday nights at 10pm, as it has been more than tripling the network's primetime delivery.  KENDRA has been resonating with its core Women 18-34 audience, ranking as the highest-rated original series among Women 18-34 on Sunday evenings.

E!'s newest reality show PRETTY WILD wrapped up its first season this month and was up +20% share.  PRETTY WILD is another program for the channel that has resonated with the Women 18-34 core demos.

Programming that continue to be the staples for the channel include THE SOUP, TRUE HOLLYWOOD STORY, E! INVESTIGATES, KEEPING UP WITH THE KARDASHIANS and ON E! this month.  THE SOUP on Fridays at 10pm ranked as the highest-rated and most-watched original show in the time period among key audiences including Adults 18-34 and Adults 18-49.  TRUE HOLLYWOOD STORY fell flat this month.  ON E! was up +25% share with Men 25-54, and KARDASHIANS were also up with male demographics this month.  E! INVESTIGATES was also up +12% in overall delivery.  E! News programming overall continues to remain a destination for celebrity and entertainment news, and the backbone for a lot of the network programming schedule.   In fact, E! continues to reign as the destination for topical entertainment news. 

THE MOVIES WE LOVE franchise was down +22% share this month.  All solid titles, but that have been repeated continously over the last few months.  Reality duo GIULIANA AND BILL was up +14% this month.  And rounding out the month, E!'s classic tabloid-labeled specials add to the primetime line-up.  This month E! aired Too Young: 15 Crimes, 15 Most Notorious Women, 20 Best and Worst Plastic Surgery and20 Unsolved Crimes.  Some of these specials are franchises in their own right, and they keep the viewers coming back month after month.  Specials were more prominent this month than in months prior, but certainly the landscape has changed somewhat for this network.  The focus continues to be on original series programming.

CABLEU NEED TO KNOW:

E! has excelled at creating the next celebrity from scratch through cheaper, unscripted reality TV.  

E!'s formula is to create an alternate universe of reality-based celebrities who have become just as famous as the sitcom and drama stars in network prime-time, but with more impact on E!'s brand and bottom line than any sitcom, medical procedural or legal drama could for broadcast.

A lot of E!'s original reality programming starts with a family or an ensemble piece.  It's not about one person, but rather a group.  As in the case of the KARDASHIANS.  KARDASHIANS allow the E! viewers to vicariously live the fantasy of its stars but also points to specific touchstones that are very relatable to viewers. 

E! has been making the move toward adding original scripted programming into its programming line-up mix.

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