via press release:

“World News with Diane Sawyer” Stands as ONLY Evening Newscast to Grow Compared to First Quarter of ’10 in Total Viewers and Adults 25-54

“World News” Sees DoubleDigit Increases in Total Viewers and Adults 25-54 versus the Previous Quarter

“World News” Draws Largest Total Viewing Audience for a Quarter in Three Years and Largest Demo Audience in Two Years

Compared to the First Quarter of ’10,  “World News” Narrows Total Viewing and

Demo Gaps with NBC by Double Digits


For the Fourth Consecutive Week, “World News with Diane Sawyer” Grows

Total Viewing and Demo Audiences Year-to-Year

“World News” Narrows Weekly Total Viewing Gap with NBC to Smallest Margin in 5 Months – Tops “Nightly News” on Friday, March 25


During the 1st Quarter 2011, “ABC World News with Diane Sawyer” averaged 8.65 million Total Viewers and a 2.0 rating/7 share/2.43 million among Adults 25-54, according to Nielsen Media Research.  Versus 1Q10, “World News” improved its Total Viewer count by +4% and its Adults 25-54 performance by +2%standing as the only network evening news program to grow over the year-ago quarter in both measures (NBC “Nightly News” down -1% and -3%, respectively; CBS’ “Evening News” was flat and down -2%, respectively). In addition, the ABC program drew its largest 1st Quarter audience in 3 years – since 1Q08.   


“World News” saw double-digit increases over the previous quarter (4Q10) in Total Viewers (+14%)and Adults 25-54 (+16%).  In fact, “World News” attracted its largest overall audience in 12 quarters (since 1Q08) and best Adults 25-54 number in 8 quarters (since 1Q09).

Compared to the year-ago quarter (1Q10), “World News” narrowed its margins with “Nightly News” by -30% in Total Viewers (1.16 million vs. 1.65 million) and by -19% Adults 25-54 (510,000 vs. 630,000).


“World News” outperformed CBS’ “Evening News” by 2.22 million Total Viewers and by 450,000 Adults 25-54 viewers during 1Q11, beating the CBS program by its largest Total Viewer margin during anyquarter in 6 years – since 1Q05.


Throughout the first quarter of 2011, “World News” brought viewers a series of exclusive interviews and special series. Diane Sawyer kicked off the year by sitting down with ten freshman Republican lawmakers on the eve of the 112th Congress. After the tragic shooting of his wife Rep. Gabrielle Giffords in Tucson, Arizona, Mark Kelly sat down for his first interview with Diane Sawyer;  Sawyer anchored the broadcast from Tucson on January 10 and 11. In February, Sawyer talked to former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld in his first interview since leaving the Bush Administration in 2006. As the uprisings spread throughout the Middle East, ABC’s Christiane Amanpour brought the “World News” audience the first interviews with Egypt’s President Hosni Mubarak, the Vice President of EgyptOmar Suleiman, and Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi. Then in her first interview since the military’s intervention in Libya, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton sat down with Diane Sawyer to answer some of the critical questions about the mission.  When tragedy hit the Pacific, Sawyer traveled to Japan to examine the aftermath of the record-breaking earthquake and the massive 23-foot tsunami. Finally, “World News” also aired two special week-long series — “Families on the Brink: What to do About Mom & Dad” and “Made in America.”




For the week of March 21, 2011, “ABC World News with Diane Sawyer” averaged 8.34 million Total Viewers and a 1.9 rating/8 share/2.33 million among Adults 25-54, according to Nielsen Media Research.  “World News”improved on its year-ago week performance in both Total Viewers (+13%) and Adults 25-54 (+13%) for the 4th consecutive week.

“World News” decreased its margins with NBC’s “Nightly News” compared to the previous week in both Total Viewers (-30% – 830,000 vs. 1.19 million) and Adults 25-54 (-7% – 530,000 vs. 570,000).  It was the ABC program’s smallest Total Viewer gap with “Nightly News” in 5 months (since w/o 10/25/10).

On Friday (3/25/11), “World News” outdrew NBC’s “Nightly News” in Total Viewers (8.00 million vs. 7.96 million).

“World News” topped “CBS Evening News” by 2.37 million viewers and by 410,000 Adults 25-54, expanding its lead over the CBS program both week to week (+21% – 1.96 million and +17% – 350,000, respectively) and year-to-year (+37% – 1.73 million and +46% – 280,000, respectively).


Note: David Muir anchored “World News” on Thursday and Friday. On Friday, Lester Holt was in for Brian Williams at NBC. CBS Evening News aired with low coverage & was broken out on Thu 3/24/11 (86%) & Fri 3/25/11 (77%) due to NCAA Basketball; ratings are excluded from the average.


Jon Banner is the executive producer of “World News with Diane Sawyer.”

EVENING NEWS (1st Quarter, 2011)

Total Viewers Adults 25-54 Households
ABC 8,650,000 2.0/7;  2,430,000 5.7/11
NBC 9,810,000 2.4/9;  2,940,000 6.3/12
CBS 6,430,000 1.6/6;  1,980,000 4.3/ 8


EVENING NEWS (Week of March 21, 2011)

Total Viewers Adults 25-54 Households
ABC 8,340,000 1.9/8;  2,330,000 5.6/11
NBC 9,170,000 2.3/9;  2,860,000 5.9/12
CBS 5,970,000 1.5/6;  1,920,000 3.9/ 8




Source: The Nielsen Company, NTI Total Viewers and Adults 25-54 Live + SD weeks of 03/21/11, 3/14/11 & 3/22/10.  Live+7 (where available) & Live+SD for Season-to-date 10-11 vs. 09-10 (9/20/10-3/20/11 vs. 9/21/09-3/21/10).  1Q11: 12/27/10 – 3/27/11.  4Q10: 9/20 – 12/26/10.  1Q10: 12/28/09 – 3/28/10.


Posted by:TV By The Numbers

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