A cable channel announced plans today to tweak its programming with moves that the network says will result in the lowest average commercial time in all of television.
The channel is Turner Broadcasting’s truTV, which is marking the one-year anniversary of a brand update. The channel says it has seen 44% growth in adults 18-49 and 55% growth in adults 18-34 in the past year.
For year two, the channel plans to increase programming by 21%
“truTV is successfully delivering on its promise of creating a more premium network and attracting a highly desirable audience that is significantly younger, richer and smarter than ever before,” the channel said in its announcement. “Building on this ratings growth and strong momentum, truTV is taking a bold next step to create an enhanced, unmatched viewer experience for its fans. Beginning in fourth quarter 2016, truTV will extend the amount of programming time during each new hour of original, prime programming by more than 20%, which will catapult the network to the lowest average commercial and promo time in all of television.”
Under the slogan “Way More Fun,” truTV touts itself as “actuality” television, as opposed to reality TV. The programming lineup includes the channel’s marquee series, “Impractical Jokers,” along with shows such as “Hack My Life,” “Adam Ruins Everything,” “The Carbonaro Effect” and “Billy on the Street.”
The network says its prime-time median age has fallen by seven years since September 2014 and is now 33 years.
“truTV’s new viewer experience initiative will begin with 45 hours of breakout, primetime programming and an additional 90 hours of programming per quarter throughout the rest of the schedule,” the network reports. “With longer shows, coupled with less frequent and shorter commercial breaks, fans of the network’s original programming will enjoy a better viewing experience, and advertising partners will benefit from a less cluttered, more premium environment for their brands.”
Said Chris Linn, president and head of programming for truTV: “We are seeing tremendous results since our refresh, proving that our new programming and brand update are moving the network in a positive direction with our targeted young adult viewers. I’m excited for truTV to be a first mover in the industry to deliver a better experience for our viewers. It’s the kind of bold and game-changing move that audiences have come to expect from truTV.”
The announcement adds: “truTV’s success extends beyond the linear network, with strong multi-platform growth across its digital, VOD and social channels, which are all up across the board. Leading the pack is truTV’s YouTube channel, which drew 18.9 million views in September 2015 (+38% vs. last September), while ‘likes’ increased by +93% and ‘shares’ saw a remarkable seven-fold increase. Through its VOD platforms, the network has amassed 6.9 million transactions in August 2015, +56% compared to August 2014, with ‘Impractical Jokers’ generating 4.8 million transactions during that same month, +183% over last year. truTV’s digital platforms enjoyed similar successes in the third quarter, with truTV.com yielding 2.6 million unique visitors, +10% versus the same time last year.”