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ETpro's avatar

Did Network TV Programming Strategy help cable clean their clocks?

Asked by ETpro (34480points) September 18th, 2010

For years while the big three networks were the only game in town, they always tried to match each other line for line with programming. If ABC had a sports event on at a given hour, then CBS and NBC had to have some sporting event of their own. If one had a drama, all three had to have dramas.

When cable came along, I thought they would start differentiating their programming, figuring that if one has sports, the other two should go for the market that doesn’t want to watch sports. But no. Even today, with video tape movies, DVDs, Cable, Satellite and Internet programming, they are still in lockstep with each other and still losing market share. Why?

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5 Answers

Seek's avatar

They do something really, really stupid – they split the crowd.

This is something I’m trying to help a few bar owners I know figure out.

When there’s a local metal show at Bar 1, with several good bands playing, it’s actually a bad idea for Bar 2 to put on the same genre show on the same night. Why? because half the people you’re trying to attract are going to Bar 1! You’ve just cut your night’s profit in half, whereas if you put on the same show the next night, you’re bound to get more of the regular crowd to come to your bar! One would think this was self-evident, but no, Bar 1 and Bar 2 are so worried about not letting each other make a decent profit, they’re cutting their own profit in the process!

ETpro's avatar

@Seek_Kolinahr Exactly. I am mystified why the geniuses in charge of all three networks never realized that.

Seek's avatar

No doubt. If I were in charge I would be all “Oh, Law and Order is on on Thursday. Well, I want the Law and Order people watching CSI, so we’ll put that on on Wednesday night! Suck it, NBC!”

YARNLADY's avatar

No, advertising controls all the commercial channels. They don’t care about “quality” or any other parameter.

ETpro's avatar

@YARNLADY True, but advertising follows eyeballs.

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