Netflix 2024: What You Need To Know Now!

Documentary Business

Peter Hamilton Consultants, Inc

Jeremy Clarkson’s “Grand Tour” Scores Big for Amazon in Parrot Analytics’ New Measure of Cross-platform Demand For Content

How do you measure the performance of unscripted and documentary programs online and in social media?

  • It’s a big question because Amazon, Netflix and other online platforms don’t share their data on the performance of their programs.
  • And that’s a problem for the unscripted / documentary eco-system, which has enjoyed at least some access to network audience metrics such as Nielsen (U.S.) and BARB (UK).
  • After all, program developers and schedulers, and their funders, are shooting in the dark if they lack reliable data about the performance of comparable programs on the booming online and social media platforms.

Parrot Analytics

  • At MIPTV, I was therefore pleased to meet up with Parrot Analytics.
  • Parrot is a technology and data science company that measures global demand for television content.
  • Parrot recognizes that consumers express their demand for content through various “demand expression platforms” including:
    • Video Streaming Platforms
    • Social Media Platforms
    • Photo Sharing Platforms
    • Blogging & Microblogging Platforms
    • Fan & Critic Rating Platforms
    • Wikis & Informational Sites
    • Peer-to-Peer Protocols
    • File-Sharing Platforms

Global Standard: Demand Expressions®

  • Parrot developed Demand Expressions®, a metric that captures cross-platform audience demand for content around the world.
  • It measures the desire, engagement and viewership of content across multiple sources.
  • Demand Expressions is weighted by importance: a stream or a download is a higher expression of demand than a passive impression or a comment.
  • It measures the total audience demand being expressed for a title, within a market, and from a multitude of sources.

The Grand Tour Rocks!

  • Amazon’s premiere original unscripted series was the big budget “The Grand Tour”.
  • I expected that Jeremy Clarkson’s autohead series would fall down Parrot’s Demand Expressions rating, and well below the big, buzzy scripted series like “Stranger Things” and “The Man In The High Castle”.
  • Parrot’s findings for 1Q 2017 were therefore a surprise.
  • Here is the topline U.S. report, where “Tour” ranked a close #3 behind “Stranger Things” and “The OA”:

  • And Clarkson blew them away in the UK:

  • In other territories, TGT‘s rankings were highly competitive with scripted:
    • Germany (#1)
    • Sweden (#1)
    • Japan (#1)
    • Russia (#2)
    • France (#5)
    • Mexico (#5)
    • And Brazil (#10).



  • Parrot’s methodology, based on the Demand Expressions® global metric, is a very welcome addition to the audience analytics toolshed.
  • I’m very excited about publishing in my newsletter regular reports from Parrot that focus on factual specials, documentaries and unscripted series.


  • The performance of “The Grand Tour” carries big implications for the unscripted sector.
  • Clarkson’s series was budgeted at an unusually high level that is comparable to a high-profile scripted series.
  • Its performance opens the window wide for the unscripted genre to pitch and deliver content that competes head-to-toe with scripted, and at an affordable cost.
  • Watch this space for more coverage!

More Information



Here are my masterclass and moderation opportunities at Sunny Side of the Doc, La Rochelle, June 19-22

  • Master Class:
    • “The Beatles: Eight Days a Week – The Touring Years” Jonathan Clyde, Executive Producer, Apple Corps, UK; Matthew White, Executive Director, ACSIL, USA. Tuesday, June 20 4:00p.
      The master class will demonstrate the value of rare and surprising archives footage in successful historical programming. How does unearthing memories and visuals hidden from view attract audiences? What is the real role of an archive hunter in scrutinizing the material and securing its way to the film?
      Read my detailed “The Beatles / Fab 4 Archive Case Study” here.
  • Meet the Executives: 
    • Leningrad Symphony” Marc Brasse, Commissioning Editor, History, ARD/NDR, Germany, and Reinhardt Beetz, Producer, Gebrueder Beetz, Germany , Monday June 19, 415p
    • Stephen Segaller, ‎VP Programming, WNET, USA. Tuesday, June 20 5:00p
    • David Royle, EVP, Programming & Production, Smithsonian Networks, USA. Wednesday, June 21 5:00p
    • Ricarda Schlossan, Commissioning Editor, Terra X, ZDF, Germany. Thursday, June 22 10:00a

Peter’s Recommendation

  • Don’t miss Sunny Side!
  • I highly recommend attending, for new and established producers.
  • It’s a very compatible market, in a beautiful location, and with great seafood.
  • Enjoy relaxed access to decision-makers and fellow producers.
  • The panels are very informative, too.

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