Viewers: Thank You For Giving Valley News Live A Win In the May - Valley News Live - KVLY/KXJB - Fargo/Grand Forks

Viewers: Thank You For Giving Valley News Live A Win In the May Nielsen News Ratings!

Viewers: Thank You For Giving Valley News Live A Win In the May Nielsen News Ratings!

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By: Jim Wareham, President and General Manager, Valley News Live

I wanted to give our viewers a look inside the May Nielsen Television ratings that just came out covering a 4 week period from April 24, 2013 to May 22, 2013.  Usually we don't publish this because to most people this is inside information, as they say "inside baseball" that most folks don't care about.  But in the past, as each rating book was released, the Forum newspaper, in an effort to make their sister TV stations, WDAY-TV and WDAZ-TV look favorable, have resorted to twisting and contorting the ratings to fit whatever the scenario they wished.  We sense they will do the same again, so we offer our analysis, but we hope in the most straight up and forward manner.  To have a good understanding of the charts below, it is important to understand 3 things, what is a rating, why are demographics important, and how the stations are combined at times and why they are.

What is a rating?  A rating point represents 1% of that total demographic, whether they are watching TV, working, sleeping, eating, driving, whatever.  If we are talking about the demographic of Women 18-49 years of age, then out of that total number of that demographic available in our entire viewing area, whether they are watching television or not, whether they are working, sleeping, eating, etc, out of that entire group, a 1 rating represents 1% of that population.  Think of the demographic as a large pie, a 10 rating equals 10% of that pie, a 5 rating equals 5% of that total pie. 

Why use demographics?   We use demographics because that is what the overwhelming percentage of our advertisers buy from us.  Most advertisers are targeting their message at a particular group of potential customers.  Example:  The most coveted demographic is Women from ages of 25 to 54.  Why is that demographic popular?  Because research shows that a woman, 25 to 54, makes the decision or influences the decision on nearly every purchase made in a household.  Groceries, restaurant, fast food, medical, furniture, auto and a myriad of other products and services are influenced by this demographic.  Some advertisers seek women 18 to 49.  Some advertisers look for couples, Adults 18 to 49 or Adults 25-54 as their target for advertising.  Why do we focus on these demographics?  Because simply that is where the advertising dollars are and advertising revenue is how we pay our employees and bills. 

Why don't viewers over 55 count with advertisers?  Most, but not all advertisers focus in on the key demographics under 55 because they believe that us older folks are already set in our ways and are not open to trying new products or services.  Being part of this group, I kind of resent that, because I do try new things, but that is the way Madison Avenue thinks and it has always been that way.  To be successful as a Television station you have to serve the demographics that the advertisers want.

Nielsen reports the stations straight forward, but there is a wrinkle in the Fargo market.  WDAY is the Forum Communications station, Channel 6 that serves the southern end of the valley with a tower near Amenia, about 20 miles west of Fargo.  WDAZ-TV, Channel 8, serves Grand Forks and the northern valley from a tower near Petersburg, North Dakota.   When WDAY/WDAZ  produces a newscast, they produce 2 completely separate newscasts, but combine their total viewers into a single audience total.  Nielsen refers to this as WDAY+ in the ratings book to signify that the broadcast is on both stations and the audience figures (ratings) are combined.  If it says WDAY, then the audience figures (ratings) reflect only the audience of WDAY.  The Valley News Live Stations, KXJB, and KVLY are located about 40 miles northwest of Fargo in Galesburg and Blanchard respectively.  Our stations only have one tower each, but they are very high, over 2000 feet high, and cover the entire television market.  However, we do broadcast our morning news, 5am to 7am, and our 10 pm news, 10 to 10:35pm as simulcast on both stations at the same time.  When we refer to KVLY/KXJB simulcast, then we are referring to the combined audience figures (ratings) of both stations.  If we refer to just KVLY, then the audience figures refer to just KVLY.  Remember the Fargo-Moorhead television markets is one of the largest, in terms of land, in the United States, covering some 35 counties in both North Dakota and Minnesota.  That is why we have such large towers to cover the entire coverage area, and WDAY and WDAZ choose to cover the area with two towers.  Also the ratings are garnered not only from over the air signals, but also from cable and satellite homes.

5-6am Adults 18-49 Adults 25-54 Women 18-49 Women 25-54 Adults 55+
KVLY/KXJB Simulcast 1.7 2.6 1.5 2.8 3.4
WDAY/WDAZ Simulcast 0.2 0.6 0.4 0.5 1.4
KVLY/KXJB Simulcast 4.1 5.7 5.3 7 7.7
WDAY/WDAZ Simulcast 1.2 1.9 1.2 2.2 4.9
KVLY 2.6 3.2 4 4.5 6.4
WDAY 0.7 1.3 0.6 1.3 8.7
WDAY+WDAZ 1.4 2.2 1.4 2.3 12.4
KVLY 5.6 6.6 6.7 7.7 9.6
WDAY 1.3 2 1.2 2.7 16.4
WDAY+WDAZ 2.8 4.3 2.9 5 22.1
KVLY/KXJB Simulcast 8.4 9.6 9.1 10.3 11
WDAY+WDAZ 6.2 9.3 6.8 10.2 19.6

We thank you, our viewer for your support of Valley News Live.  We won't let this success go to our head.  We get up every day with a drive and desire to be the very best at what we do.  Television news is a very competitive business and can humble one very quickly.  We understand.  We savor the moment and then we are back to work!

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