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Good Ratings News for Nickelodeon with "Penguins" and "SpongeBob"

by on April 24, 2009

The Los Angeles Times has taken a look at the ratings success of The Penguins of Madagascar on Nickelodeon (free registration required), which was the most-watched premiere in Nickelodeon history and has held on to a substantial portion of its audience since then. The article contains quotes from Nickelodeon’s president of animation Brown Johnson, discussing what she sees as the reasons for the show’s success.

Nickelodeon has also issued a press release (available in its entirety below) about the winning ratings of the “SpongeBob vs. the Big One” special episode, which guest-starred Johnny Depp. The episode drew in 5.8 million total viewers and also drove record traffic to the SpongeBob.com website.



Special Episode with Johnny Depp Soaks Up Kid Ratings and

Places as Week’s Top Telecast on Broadcast and Basic Cable

NEW YORK-April 21, 2009-Nickelodeon’s latest SpongeBob adventure–“SpongeBob vs. The Big One” (Friday, April 17, 8 p.m., all times ET/PT)–proved to be one of Nick’s biggest draws this year to date, pulling in 5.8 million total viewers, and ranking second only behind USA’s WWE. The special–which guest stars Johnny Depp and marks one of several on-air events to celebrate SpongeBob‘s 10th anniversary this year-also took the top spot as the number-one kids’ program on basic cable for the week (with P2+) and won the week with kids on both broadcast and cable. Posting triple-digit gains with all key demographics, the special averaged a 9.4/3.3 million K2-11 (+135%) and 9.6/2.0 K6-11 (+113%).
Highlights for “SpongeBob vs. the Big One” include:

    • The half-hour SpongeBob special (Friday, April 17, 8 p.m. ET/PT) was basic cable’s number-one kids’ show for the week (4/13/09-4/19/09) with 5.8 million total viewers (+142% in delivery over last year’s like time period).
    • “SpongeBob vs. the Big One” was the number-one telecast on all of broadcast and cable television for the week with K2-11 and K6-11.
    • The special episode garnered triple-digit rating increases with all core kid and tween demos, averaging a 9.4/3.3 million kids 2-11 (up +135%); a 9.6/2.0 million kids 6-11 (up +113%), and a 6.4/1.4 million tweens 9-14 (up +121%).
    • The telecast was broadcast and basic cable’s fifth highest-rated telecast for 2009 with kids 2-11 and the fourth highest-rated show with kids this year on basic cable.
    • The special episode was Nickelodeon’s fifth highest-rated telecast with total viewers in 2009.
    • “SpongeBob vs. the Big One” was the highest-rated SpongeBob telecast in 2009 with all demos.
    • Spongebob.com had its most trafficked week ever (4/13/09-4/19/09) with 2.1 million unique visitors (+38% over last week); 22 million page views (+40%); and 10.4 million total game sessions (+29%).
    • The “SpongeBob vs. the Big One” trailer was the number-one video for the week. Related programming on Nick.com brought in nearly 10 million streams since March 19 (source: Omniture SiteCatalyst).

Additionally, the Penguins of Madagascar was basic cable’s highest-ranking kids’ show this week with total viewers behind top-ranked SpongeBob SquarePants. The latest episode (Saturday, April 18, 10 a.m. ET/PT) drew 4.9 million total viewers (+44%), and averaged an 8.1/2.8 million K2-11 (+47%) and 8.3/1.8 million K6-11 (+57%).
SpongeBob SquarePants has emerged as a pop-culture phenomenon and one of the most popular series in kids’ television history. It has been the number-one animated program with Kids 2-11 for seven consecutive years and its Saturday morning airing ranks as the top-rated program on television among Kids 2-11. With 45 million Adults 18+ monthly viewers, adults represent approximately one-third of the SpongeBob audience (Nielsen Media Research, March 2009).
Nickelodeon, now in its 30th year, is the number-one entertainment brand for kids. It has built a diverse, global business by putting kids first in everything it does. The company includes television programming and production in the United States and around the world, plus consumer products, online, recreation, books, magazines and feature films. Nickelodeon’s U.S. television network is seen in more than 98 million households and has been the number-one-rated basic cable network for 14 consecutive years. For more information or artwork, visithttp:https://www.nickpress.com. Nickelodeon and all related titles, characters and logos are trademarks of Viacom Inc. (NYSE: VIA, VIA.B).

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