In mid-May, CNN had its lowest-rated ratings week in primetime in 20 years.
An average of 395,000 viewers watched Piers Morgan and Anderson Cooper last week. Just think: Kim Zolciak’s reality show attracted more than triple that number last Thursday.
As the knowledgeable Bill Carter of the New York Times noted: “CNN has seen its competitive position erode for several years without instituting significant changes in its overall approach. The network’s management has kept to its course of emphasizing news coverage and not the views of its prime-time personalities.”
According to the Huffington Post, CNN’s all-day numbers were the third worst since 1997. And its April full month ratings were its worst in a decade. May doesn’t appear to be going any better.
CNN relies heavily on breaking news and there was very little in the way of big news last week. A big natural disaster or O.J. Simpson-style ruckus would help.
TVNewser just wrote an extensive analytical piece and notes that CNN in aggregate is doing fine financially. The digital side has a huge audience, and CNNI and HLN are doing relatively well. So all is not lost in CNN land. Media pundits, though, tend to focus on the “sexy” primetime numbers and that’s a weakness at the moment.
By Rodney Ho, Radio & TV Talk