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Documentary Business

Peter Hamilton Consultants, Inc

U.S. Distribution. More Cord-cutting: What Does it Mean for Programmers?

The cable/satellite program distribution model is mature and under increasing fire from ‘over the top’ delivery options.

Today: U.S. network distribution data for June 2011 versus June 2010:

  • Who were the gainers and losers?
  • And what does it mean?

U.S. TVHH’s (‘000)

20112010ChangeCategory
TBS101,138100,6080.5%Entertainment
CNN100,988100,3700.6%News
WEATHER100,986100,0540.9%News
DISCOVERY100,814100,1010.7%Factual/Reality
NICK-AT-NITE100,594100,0640.5%Entertainment
NICKELODEON100,594100,0640.5%Kids
FOOD100,53399,9340.6%Lifestyle
USA100,34599,5410.8%Entertainment
CNN100,31199,6400.7%News
TNN100,28899,6300.7%Entertainment
CNN HEADLINE NEWS100,21799,5790.6%News
A&E100,13399,3030.8%Entertt / Reality
ESPN100,05299,6120.4%Sports
LIFETIME99,98899,3360.7%Entertt / Reality
ESPN299,92899,5270.4%Sports
SPIKE TV99,81898,8161.0%Reality
DISNEY99,80199,0980.7%Kids
HOME & GARDEN99,75799,1050.7%Lifestyle / Reality
TLC99,67799,0410.6%Reality
ADULT SWIM99,65498,8360.8%Entertainment
CARTOON99,65498,8360.8%Kids
HISTORY99,64798,7410.9%Reality / Factual
MTV99,62098,9540.7%Reality
COMEDY99,37998,5370.9%Comedy
FX99,32898,4310.9%Entertainment
SYFY99,25297,4701.8%Entertt / Reality
VH199,16898,4310.7%Entertt / Reality
FOX NEWS99,04398,3930.7%News
ABC FAMILY98,84798,3810.5%Entertainment
E! ENTERTERTAINMENT98,52797,5401.0%News / Entertt
CNBC98,47197,9090.6%News
TV LAND97,71897,7130.0%Entertainment
ANIMAL PLANET97,37896,8510.5%Factual / Reality
AMC96,95796,0111.0%Entertainment
TRAVEL95,87095,8820.0%Reality / Factual
MSNBC95,61194,2011.5%News
BRAVO95,11793,7171.5%Reality
CMT92,54691,1541.5%Music / Entertt
TRU TV92,47392,531-0.1%Reality
BLACK ENTERTT91,77290,1961.7%Entertt / Reality
HALLMARK87,58889,700-2.4%Entertainment
GOLF83,75983,4690.3%Sports
LIFETIME MOVIE82,18677,7565.7%Movies
TV GUIDE81,74480,3801.7%Entertainment
MTV278,79678,4720.4%Entertainment
DISNEY XD78,66177,1222.0%Kids
SPEED78,47675,7133.6%Reality / Entertt
OWN: OPRAH77,73375,9232.4%Reality / Entertt
WETV77,30176,6510.8%Reality
OXYGEN77,03576,4180.8%Reality
ID: INVESTIGATION DISC76,56158,71330.4%Factual / Reality
VERSUS76,18374,0912.8%Sports
SOAPNET74,75075,255-0.7%Entertainment
WGN74,50172,5332.7%Entertainment
ESPN NEWS74,15673,1011.4%Sports
GSN73,71471,5863.0%Entertainment
NICK JR73,67073,2790.5%Entertainment
ESPNU73,15970,8023.3%Sports
NAT GEO CHANNEL71,15870,6390.7%Factual / Reality
BBC-AMERICA68,28767,5281.1%News / Entertainment
SCIENCE68,14166,6172.3%Factual / Reality
STYLE67,34164,6784.1%Lifestyle / Reality
BIO64,73259,5248.7%Factual
HISTORY INTERNATL63,66658,2749.3%Factual
INDEP FILM62,154NAEntertainment
GALAVISION61,67757,2767.7%Entertainment
GREAT AMER COUNTRY60,19858,7132.5%Entertainment
G459,89769,514-13.8%Entertainment
CURRENT TV58,288NAEntertainment
FOX BUSINESS57,981NANews
REELZ57,778NAEntertainment
VH1 CLASSIC57,70556,9821.3%Music / Entertt
MILITARY57,70057,5640.2%Factual / Docs
FUSE57,67367,993-15.2%Music
COOKING57,66757,3280.6%Lifestyle
NFL56,84656,3160.9%Sports
PLANET GREEN56,347NAFactual
MLB BASEBALL56,23155,3231.6%Sports
DIY54,06553,7340.6%Lifestyle
NAT GEO WILD53,55735,80549.6%Factual
TV ONE53,25350,3545.8%Entertainment
SPROUT49,793NAKids
DISCOVERY FIT & HEALTH48,723NALifestyle
LOGO47,80845,6294.8%Lifestyle / Factual
GMC (formerly GOSPEL)46,36147,376-2.1%Entertainment
CENTRIC45,794NAEntertainment
OVATION43,211NAMusic / Arts
HALLMARK MOVIE41,63034,70719.9%Entertainment
CHILLER40,991NAEntertainment
SUNDANCE40,000NALifestyle / Reality
Premium / PayTV LeadersEntertainment + Docs
HBO30,176Entertainment
SHOWTIME24,860
TOTAL U.S. TV Homes115,900

Takeaways

  • Many channels are shedding subs
    • Hallmark lost 112,000!
  • Dark, cord-cutting forces at work include price resistance, Netflix, and the rejection of cable TV by young trend-setters
  • For the fully-distributed channels at the top of the table, the only way to grow is to eat the enemy. That means out-programming them!
  • It is the Reality category that is leading the charge
  • Mature businesses everywhere rely on cost-cutting to sustain their margins, and in the cable TV business that’s good news for non-scripted producers
    • Factual costs less than scripted
    • The broadcast networks are dumping scripted series and hiring Reality specialists
    • That means an expanded commissioning pipeline for non-scripted producers
  • The bad news for non-scripted producers is that mature businesses everywhere rely on cost-cutting …
    • Channels are forever trimming production budget line items
    • And pushing the cost of development to producers
  • A handful of mid-table Factual channels showed remarkable year-to-year subscriber gains. Swimming against the tide were:
    • Nat Geo Wild (+50%)
    • ID: Investigation Discovery (+30%)
    • History International (+9%)
    • Bio (+9%)

The Data

  • Not all channels are reported
  • And year-to-year comparisons are lacking for many networks.

—————————————

Singapore Workshop
Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Trends & Opportunities in Unscripted Television
Presented by Media Development Authority, Singapore
Workshop leader: Peter Hamilton

Key Questions

  • What’s driving the U.S. and international market for Factual Entertainment?
  • And how can Singapore producers get some of this work?

Agenda

  • What is the scale of the international, especially U.S., factual television industry?
  • Who are the leading commissioning networks? And the minor players?
  • How big is their audience?
  • How much do they spend each year on new commissions?
  • What are the categories of spending?

What Do Broadcasters Want?

  • What is the demand for individual documentaries and limited series
  • What are the filters?
  • Docs: HBO, PBS, OWN, ESPN, PBS and others
  • Lifestyle channels: Food, Cooking, Travel, Style
  • Case Study: ‘The Rise and Rise of the #1 Hit Pawn Stars’

Art of Pitching

  • How to develop a strong pitch
  • Do’s and Don’ts
  • Case studies

Access

  • Who gets the work?
  • Is the U.S. market open to international partners?
  • What are the deal terms?
  • And how can Singapore producers establish themselves as U.S. suppliers?

Q&A