July 26, 2011

THE SKED: New Fall Show On-Air Promotion — July 26 Update

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Written by: Mitch Salem
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>With about one week of network on-air promotion activity tracked in hit summer shows (those at or above a 2.0 Adult 18-49 rating), each network’s marketing strategies are starting to emerge.

FOX is putting its chips on X-Factor and New Girl, and to some extent Terra Nova with shorter form spots.  The table below summarizes the number of seconds devoted to on-air promotion within hit summer shows (Hell’s Kitchen, MasterChef and So You Think You Can Dance in FOX’s case).  FOX is taking the strategy of promoting a few shows relentlessly so far.

In contrast, NBC is promoting more shows (and it has more to support) more equitably.  Prime Suspect is narrowly in the lead, with Up All Night, Whitney and Playboy Club forming a second tier. 

We really need more time to discern the CBS strategy, as their on-air promotion for new fall series was quite low this week.  A large amount of promo time this past week was devoted to Sunday’s premiere of Same Name (a celebrity — David Hasselhoff in the premiere episode — switches places with a regular person with the same name and both learn valuable life lessons in the process).  Given the low premiere numbers for Same Name, this choice backfired.

At ABC, Revenge leads the way, but please note the sample includes only one Monday night (Bachelorette and Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss), a night which was interrupted by President Obama and Speaker Boehner to boot.

Keep checking back each week, as these numbers will be updated cumulatively.

   Fall Series Promos (in seconds)
  In Hit Summer Shows since July 19

FOX      X-Factor          135
         New Girl          125
         Terra Nova         90

NBC      Prime Suspect      75
         Up All Night       65
         Whitney            65
         Playboy Club       60
         Free Agents        40
         Sing-Off           15

CBS      Person of Interest 50
         Unforgettable      30
         2 Broke Girls      30

ABC      Revenge            60
         Charlie’s Angels   30
         Suburgatory        30
         Pan Am             30

Note: New fall series not listed
have not been promoted in hit summer
shows during this date span.

To see the list of shows in which
promotion activity is tracked, see
the Summer Broadcast Ratings update.

About the Author

Mitch Salem
MITCH SALEM has worked on the business side of the entertainment industry for 20 years, as a senior business affairs executive and attorney for such companies as NBC, ABC, USA, Syfy, Bravo, and BermanBraun Productions, and before that, at the NY law firm of Weil, Gotshal & Manges. During all that, he has more or less constantly been going to the movies and watching TV, and writing about both since the 1980s. His film reviews also currently appear on and In addition, he is co-writer of an episode of the television series "Felicity."