ABC Scores Its Most-Watched July Sweep in Late-Night in 8 Years

Categories: Network TV Press Releases

Written By

August 4th, 2011

via press release:

Week of July 25, 2011 and 2011 July Sweep

Standing as the Only Broadcaster to Post Week-to-Week Gains in Late-Night,

ABC Hits its Best Performance in 3 Weeks in Viewers and Young Adults

ABC’s “Nightline” Tops All Late-Night Programs Across All Target Demos,
Finishing No. 1 in Total Viewers for the 29th Week During the Season

ABC’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live” is the Only Late-Night Talk Show
to Grow its Adult 18-49 Audience Year to Year

With Guests Harrison Ford and Lady Gaga, “JKL’s” Thursday Telecast Draws
the Program’s Best Summertime Number in Young Adults in 1 Year

 

ABC Late-Night (Monday – Friday)

During the week of July 25, 2011, including the final three nights of the July 2011 sweep, ABC grew week to week for the 4th time in the last 5 weeks in both Total Viewers (+3% - 2.115 million vs. 2.050 million) and Adults 18-49 (+4% - 734,000 vs. 704,000), marking its best performance in late-night in 3 weeks – since w/o 7/4/11. ABC stood as the only broadcaster to post weekly gains on both Nielsen measures (CBS was up +7%/down -4%, respectively; NBC was down -1%/up +3%, respectively).

 

ABC was also the only broadcaster to see gains over the year-ago week (w/o 7/26/10) in Total Viewers and Adults 18-49, posting double-digit gains in both viewers (+12%) and young adults (+12%) – CBS was flat/-7%, respectively; NBC was down -9%/-11%, respectively.

 

  • For the week, ABC topped CBS in late-night by 4% in Adults 18-49 (734,000 vs. 703,000).

 

During the recently completed 2011 July Sweep, ABC grew 3% over the year-ago Sweep in Total Viewers (2.076 million vs. 2.009 million), marking the Net’s best July Sweep in late-night in 8 years (since 2003) and 2nd-largest overall audience ever for a July Sweep. In addition, ABC was the only broadcast net to grow its overall audience in late-night year to year (CBS was down -10%; NBC was flat). In fact, ABC was up over its year-ago performance in late-night for the 6th Sweeps period in a row.

 

  • During the Sweep, ABC drew a larger audience in late-night than CBS (2.076 million vs. 2.074 million) for the 2nd Sweep in a row.

 

Nightline” (Monday – Friday)

During the week of July 25, 2011, including the final three nights of the July 2011 sweep, ABC’s “Nightline” ranked No. 1 among the late-night programs across all key target demos: Total Viewers (3.864 million), Adults 25-54 (1.498 million) and Adults 18-49 (1.187 million), according to Nielsen Media Research.  Impressively, “Nightline ranked No. 1 in Total Viewers for the 29th time during the season.  This represents the most number of weeks at No. 1 in Total Viewers during the course of a season, beating both NBC’s “The Tonight Show” and CBS’ “The Late Show.”

 

For the 2nd week in a row and the 4th time in the last 5 weeks, “Nightline” built on the previous week in all 3 Nielsen measures: Total Viewers (+5%), Adults 25-54 (+4%) and Adults 18-49 (+9%).

 

“Nightline” improved by double digits on its year-earlier week performance in Total Viewers (+18%), Adults 25-54 (+17%) and Adults 18-49 (+17%), building its Total Viewer count for the 6th straight week.  Further, “Nightline” grew its overall audience year to year in 22 of the last 24 weeks.

 

On Thursday (7/28/11), “Nightline” scored its most-watched telecast (4.463 million) in 2 months – since 5/24/11.   

 

Season to date, “Nightline” ranks first in late-night among Total Viewers and Adults 25-54.  This is the first time ever that “Nightline” has been in first place at this point in the season since at least the 1993-94 season, when “Letterman” began on CBS.  In addition, “Nightline” is up by 6% in Total Viewers and by 4% in Adults 25-54 compared to the same point last year, standing as the only program to grow year to year in Adults 25-54 versus “The Tonight Show” and “The Late Show.”  Season to date, “Nightline” is drawing its largest overall audience in 8 years – since the 2002-03 season.

 

For the recently completed 2011 July Sweep, ABC News’ “Nightline” finished second in Total Viewers (3.781 million), Adults 25-54 (1.457 million) and Adults 18-49 (1.111 million), according to Nielsen Media Research.

 

“Nightline” improved on July 2010 by 11% in its Total Viewers and by 2% in Adults 25-54.  In fact, the ABC late-night program attracted its largest overall July sweep audience in 10 years – since July 2001.  In addition, ABC’s “Nightline” stood as the only late-night program to improve on the year-ago sweep in overall viewers and in the key adult news demo, while NBC’s “The Tonight Show” (-2% and -6%, respectively) and CBS’ “The Late Show” (-8% and -11%, respectively) each saw decreases.

 

“Nightline” bested CBS’ “The Late Show” during the month by 908,000 Total Viewers and by 273,000 Adults 25-54, marking its strongest margins in over 10 years in both measures during the course of any sweeps period – since July 1999 and May 2000, respectively.   

 

“Jimmy Kimmel Live” (Monday – Friday)

During the week of July 25, 2011, including the final three nights of the July 2011 sweep, ABC’sJimmy Kimmel Live” saw double-digit percent gains over the year-ago week (w/o 7/26/10) in both Total Viewers (+15% - 1.512 million vs. 1.320 million) and Adults 18-49 (+14% - 578,000 vs. 507,000), posting the largest yearly gain in overall viewers of any late-night talk show. In addition, “JKL” stood as the only late-night broadcast talk show to grow over the same week last year in young adults, as NBC’s “Tonight Show with Jay Leno” (-15%), “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon” (-7%) and “Last Call with Carson Daly” (-9%) and CBS’ “Late Show with David Letterman” (-11%) and “Late Late Show with Ferguson” (-2%) were all down.

 

Additionally, ABC’s “JKL” posted its 2nd week of consecutive gains in both Total Viewers (+2%) and Adults 18-49 (+1%) to hit its best performance in 3 weeks (since w/o 7/4/11).

 

  • ABC’s “JKL” beat CBS’ “The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson” for the 2nd week in a row in both Total Viewers (+7% - 1.512 million vs. 1.419 million) and Adults 18-49 (+5% - 578,000 vs. 551,000), leading the CBS late-night program in 3 of 5 nights of the week (Monday, Thursday and Friday) on both Nielsen measures. In fact, an encore telecast of “JKL” on Friday defeated an original telecast of “Ferguson” by 18% in viewers (1.524 million vs. 1.291 million) and by 17% in Adults 18-49 (558,000 vs. 475,000).

 

  • ABC’s “JKL” topped TBS’ “Conan” by 8% in Adults 18-49 (578,000 vs. 537,000).

 

  • Excluding the NBA Finals-led broadcasts in June, “JKL’s” Thursday telecast (7/28/11), featuring guests Harrison Ford and Lady Gaga, attracted the ABC late-night program’s largest Adult 18-49 audience  (786,000) on any night in 2 months – since 5/24/11. In fact, Thursday’s telecast marked the program’s best summertime number in young adults in nearly 1 year – since 8/10/10. In addition, Thursday was the most-watched original telecast of the season in Teens 12-17 (110,000).

 

During the recently completed 2011 July Sweep, ABC’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live” beat CBS’ “The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson” by 4% in Total Viewers (1.431 million vs. 1.372 million), marking its 3rd win in the last 4 Sweep periods. In addition, ABC’s “JKL” topped TBS’ “Conan” by 8% in Adults 18-49 (565,000 vs. 522,000), posting its 2nd consecutive Sweeps victory over the TBS late-night program.

 

Late-Night Rank (Week of July 25) TOTAL VIEWERS      A18-49(000)

ABC                                   2,115,000          734,000 

CBS                                   2,136,000          703,000

NBC                                   2,204,000          790,000

Late-Night Rank (2011 July Sweep) TOTAL VIEWERS      A18-49(000)

ABC                                   2,076,000          715,000 

CBS                                   2,074,000          730,000

NBC                                   2,360,000          849,000

 

Note: Due to a special report on Monday on President Obama's remarks on the debt crisis, both ABC and CBS programs ran at a later time and were excluded from their weekly averages. The weekly averages for all 4 programs are based on 4 days (Tue-Fri).

 

Source: The Nielsen Company, Live + Same Day National Program Ratings for week of 7/25/11, 7/18/11 & 7/26/10 or as dated. Most Current Program Ratings for July 2011 sweep (6/30/11-7/27/11) vs. July 2010 sweep (7/1/10-7/28/10) and May 2011 sweep (4/28/11-5/25/11). Comparisons based on 000s.

ABC Late-Night = “Nightline” and “JKL”; CBS Late-Night = “Letterman” and “Ferguson”; NBC Late-Night = “Tonight Show,” “Fallon” and “Carson Daly.”

 
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