Dueling Press Releases: CBS Touts Its Big Ratings Win — But So Does NBC

Dec 27, 2013  •  Post A Comment

Both CBS and NBC are crowing about their big wins in the broadcast ratings for the week ending Dec. 22. CBS released an announcement touting the fact that it had the top 11 scripted series on broadcast TV and is heading into the new year with a substantial lead over NBC.

NBC, meanwhile, was announcing that it won the week and had the top three prime-time programs, and has ranked No. 1 or tied for No. 1 among the big four broadcast nets for eight weeks in a row and 12 of 13 weeks this season. NBC also made the point that it leads the season by 0.4 of a ratings point, matching the biggest lead for any network at this point in the season in the past 11 years.

One big difference between the two networks: CBS is talking total viewers, while NBC is putting the accent on the key demo of viewers 18-49.

Another difference: Much of NBC’s success has come in unscripted programming, especially "Sunday Night Football and "The Voice," while CBS has spun ratings gold from its scripted comedies and dramas, including "NCIS," which the network notes topped all programming in total viewers with 19.65 million.

For the week ending Dec. 22, NBC noted that between "Sunday Night Football" and "The Voice," the network had the No. 1 prime-time show of the big four networks in every key demo, and in teenagers and kids.

CBS has four of the season’s top five scripted programs, including the No. 1 drama ("NCIS") and the No. 1 comedy ("The Big Bang Theory"). The network also has the season’s top three new comedies, and broadcast’s top scripted series in adults 18-49, adults 25-54 and adults 18-34.

For the week ending Dec. 22, CBS was up +17% in viewers, +15% in adults 25-54 and +13% in adults 18-49 over last year.

Here are the numbers, based on Nielsen Media Research figures:

Week ending Dec. 22

Average rating, share and audience in each category

ADULTS 18-49

NBC 2.4/7, 3.1 million
CBS 1.7/5, 2.1 million
ABC 1.2/4, 1.5 million
Fox 1.1/3, 1.3 million
CW 0.3/1, 0.4 million

Each rating point equals 1.27 million viewers

TOTAL VIEWERS

CBS 3.0/8, 8.8 million
NBC 2.8/7, 8.1 million
ABC 1.7/5, 5.1 million
Fox 1.2/3, 3.4 million
CW 0.3/1, 1.0 million

Each rating point equals 2.95 million viewers

SEASON TO DATE

Average rating, share and audience in each category

ADULTS 18-49

NBC 3.1/9, 4.0 million
CBS 2.7/8, 3.4 million
Fox 2.4/7, 3.0 million
ABC 2.3/7, 3.0 million
CW 0.8/2, 1.1 million

Each rating point equals 1.27 million viewers

TOTAL VIEWERS

CBS 3.9/10, 11.6 million
NBC 3.4/9, 9.9 million
ABC 2.8/7, 8.3 million
Fox 2.4/6, 7.1 million
CW 0.7/2, 2.0 million

Each rating point equals 2.89 million viewers

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