Fall TV Season Update with Corus Entertainment

December 6, 2019
Tom Shipman

As we enter the home stretch of the Fall TV Season, we thought it would be interesting to get an update from the Executive leadership of the respective Canadian Broadcast Partners.

We sat down with Paul Ackerman, Director of Local Sales in BC for Corus Entertainment, to get his thoughts on how the Fall TV season is going for Corus:

How is the Fall Season going for your Network so far? 

I would say that, on par, Conventional and Specialty combined, we are having a good Fall in terms of our audience estimates to actuals – really great to see the resiliency of conventional television.
Program Audience Surprises? 

I’m always surprised when “Survivor” pulls the audience numbers it does, year in year out.. for 39 seasons!.   Consistently a top show across most demos.    I am also thrilled to see our Complex content on Global, Saturday nights after SNL… “Hot Ones” is so much fun to watch.

Which New and Returning shows are doing best?

911, Prodigal Son, New Amsterdam and FBI have all performed well.   Yet tried and true – Survivor still ranks as out top performer nationally

What’s the biggest change in the TV industry that you’ve seen in the last 3 years?

There is no escaping audience decline in Linear TV… that said, total hours of video consumption is up or flat depending on the demo.   Our industry simply has to ensure that our content follows the viewer and is seem on all platforms, all devices, whether it’s in the Amazon Prime environment or smart TV platforms.   We have great content, it just needs to be available wherever the viewer goes.

What do you think the biggest change will be 3 years from now?   

I think we will see accelerated change that will include automation in buying Linear television with a shift to audience based buying against audience segmentation versus demo based buying.   I also think a lot of the client pain the agency experiences will go away… with in-campaign automated posting, in-campaign optimization and eliminating the back and forth of preemptions and makegoods.   But I’m an optimist.

How has PVR usage impacted you as a broadcaster?

Eight nine percent of television viewing is still consumed live.  That said, in today’s environment, there are so many ways to find and consume a program, broadcasters just need to ensure that our content is everywhere, whether live, AVOD or in apps.

What is your own personal favorite TV show on your own Network? 

On one of our networks…embarrassingly, I’m a Slice viewer.  Vanderpump Rules, Real Housewives and Southern Charm.   I’m going to regret saying that.

Do you have a favorite TV show on another Network?

Bachelor(ette) or Bachelor in Paradise.

How has the brand convergence of Corus news radio and Global TV gone so far?   

Really well!   It certainly forces you to re-imagine the Newscasts, as on the radio listener side, there is no supporting video.   So our producers, writers and announcers have to be much more intentional in delivery so that our radio audience gets the maximum value out of the simulcast.

How have audiences reacted to the TV simulcast on the radio side? 

Our Global News simulcasts on Global News radio has exceeded our expectations in the markets, growing respective time blocks.   As a commuter, I appreciate being able to listen to the 6 on my way home from work.

Thanks very much Paul, we appreciate your time.