Spinning the Ratings in Sin City

TV Management loves to use percentages when talking about ratings. If a show has a 1 rating and moves to a 2, it's a 100% increase in viewers.

Of course, it's just still a 2 rating which isn't that good.

But, managers don't just use the percentage crap in press releases, they also use it on their own staff.

Check out this internal memo sent to the staff at KTNV in Las Vegas from GM Jim Prather:

Team Vegas,

As I shared earlier this morning, today we are coding out all newscasts, local programming and syndicated programming as a Holiday.

I have attached the 19 of 20 day comparison grids, which will be our final ratings.  I am not sure what the competition is doing, so their ratings could change slightly.  All comparisons below are based on share growth year-to-year.

Scripps made a major investment in KTNV, and in this November book we took a MAJOR step forward in closing the ratings gap in morning newscasts.  We saw growth percentages of 64% share (at 4:30 am), 97% share (at 5 am), 102% share (at 6 am) and 22% share (at 11 am) on a year-to-year basis.

This is the closest 4-way race for morning viewers in more than a decade.

At 5 pm, KTNV grew over the Judge Judy lead-in by 14%, and we grew 41% year-to-year.

At 6 pm, there was smaller but still impressive growth, with a 14% share gain year-to-year.  We have a major opportunity to grow ratings at 6 pm if we do a better job retaining World News Tonight viewers.  Right now we are losing 17% of this audience from 5:45 pm to the first quarter hour of our 6 pm newscast.

Congrats to the late news team for pushing us across the finish line with a 3.7 rating and 8.2 share.  As of today we are #1 at 11 pm, with a .2 rating lead over KLAS and KSNV.  We will see if they code the 11 pm out or keep it in.  We won't have a final on the late news finish until tomorrow.  However, we are in a position to finish #1 at 11 pm with a third place 10:45 pm quarter hour lead-in.  Your hard work throughout this ratings period has been amazing. THANK YOU SO MUCH!

Demographic ratings will be released in 3 weeks, and we will certainly share the data with you when it arrives.

In the meantime, enjoy your Thanksgiving!

All the best,