Go figure. In the midst of the recently completed July TV sweeps period KMBC was off Time Warner Cable—the largest cable provider in the area with reportedly 35-40% of its station’s viewers— due to a contract dispute with the ABC affiliate’s parent Hearst TV.
Despite being off TWC for 10 days, KMBC still managed to hold on to its ratings crown at every news period in the day, which it has now done for years. If its competitors couldn’t knock them off in this ratings period there is scant hope they will ever do it in the foreseeable future.
“Very honestly,” said one local media expert, “it was simply remarkable that KMBC could still win.”
KMBC was the #1 choice for news at 4:30 a.m. (1.9 HH rating/11HH share), 5:00 a.m. (2.1/11), 5:30 a.m. (2.8/14), 6:00 a.m. (4.0/16), 5:00 p.m. (5.4/11), 6:00 p.m. (6.2/12) and 10:00 p.m. (6.4/12). The station led in the morning segments with and without TWC the entire ratings period.
KMBC’s news director feels the station’s intense coverage of the drought was the key.
“I’m very proud of our team and what we accomplished in July,” said Sherrie Brown, KMBC 9 News Director in a news release heralding the victory. “The drought continues to be the big story affecting everyone in the Kansas City area.
“It’s a story we decided early on to dedicate all our resources to cover,” she added. “The heat emergency impacts our viewers on every level…their health, their budget, the safety of their family and personal possessions. It’s news coverage we excel at…connecting people with issues that really matter to them.”
At one point rival KSHB led the ratings for the 5 and 6 p.m. hour, but it could not hold the lead once KMBC was back on TWC.
According to the station, those early evening newscasts were most impacted by the blackout. While both newscasts led their time periods prior to the service interruption on July 10, viewership waned during the outage.
However, following the return of KMBC 9 News to Time Warner Cable on July 19, the newscasts returned to first place in just three days.
Bottom Line Communications will be posting the final ratings later today.
Source: Nielsen Media Research, 6/28/12-7/25/12 (L+SD)