You still have channel surfers but they’re now surfing between F2A multi channels and streaming services but they’re nowhere near the numbers that existed even just 15 years ago. There’s now a major post news shed. Viewers are becoming more selective in what they watch and how, so that also applies to sports as well. But there’s still multigame NRL and AFL viewers.
Thinking of it like cinemas. There are thousands of movies available now at a single click. There are movies you’ll pay to go see at the Deluxe Lounge because you want the full experience. There are movies you’ll see in a crappy cinema seat. Then there are a huge amount that you won’t bother with. But there are some people who still go to the cinema every two or three weeks. Weekly sports league viewers have very similar dynamics.
Seem to be bucking the trend this year, let`s hope it`s the sign of a turn-around.
Thu/Fri NRL ratings:
Nine Metro 2022
1.842 @ 307k ave
Nine Metro 2023
2.175m @ 363k ave (+18%)
That`s certainly a statistically significant jump, well outside of any natural variation you might see in those numbers.
As I said earlier 9`s coverage can be painful, but it is not totally unbearable, we must also consider 9 are still bedding down the post-Ray Warren era as well.
Hopefully the professionalism and intelligence of Slater, the likeability and decency of Freddy *, and the popularity of John`s proves to be a winning formula that can grow the audience back.
* Freddy made a comment last night that perfectly encapsulated his likeability and relatability for me, when the commentators threw to him to comment on an obviously exhausted Cam Murray leaving the field Freddy said in his typically non-hyperbolic manner, " every time I see that bloke, he makes me wonder if I`m trying hard enough in life". Nice.