Flannery: Huge growth reflects audience confidence in ONE News to deliver

ONE News has had almost unprecedented growth according to independent data released today of television news viewing in March.

An average of 614,000 viewers watched ONE News every night in March, only half that many watched TV3 News every night at 6pm (315,000 viewers aged 5+ nationwide).

In ratings terms – a rating is the measurement used to buy television by advertisers – ONE News has had a whopping increase in its target demographic of 25-54 year olds. ONE News has jumped 3.2 ratings points compared to the same period last year whereas TV3’s flagship bulletin has declined 0.3 overall. 3 News also lost a massive 2.5 ratings points in the important “Auckland Urban” area in March year-on-year

Outside of Auckland Metro, ONE News has also enjoyed staggering growth and seen a ratings increase of almost 4 points.

Its share has increased an enormous 10.7% in March YOY while 3 News’ share dropped almost 3% outside of Auckland.

Share measures the number of people watching television across all channels at any one time. ONE News increased its share from 29% last March to 39% last month in its target demo – or 39% of all 25-54 year olds watching television between 6-7pm each night were on ONE News. TV3’s share was down from 31% to 28%.

“No matter what way you look at these numbers ONE News has had an outstanding period of growth,” says TVNZ Head of News and Current Affairs, Anthony Flannery.

“Our news and current affairs programmes right across the board are attracting very large audiences – we listen to our viewers and are committed to giving them the world class service they deserve.

“Strong viewership is only maintained if you deliver consistently high standards of journalism and I believe our viewers have that confidence in us, they turn on our programmes knowing we’ll deliver.

“Viewers who watch news and current affairs are smart, interested in what affects them and their families, and actively engaged in the world around them.

“They select programmes on merit, not by routine… you can’t sell them a lemon.”


TVNZ’s traffic analysts have estimated the value of a ratings point in the post-recession advertising market (estimate done in August 2010)

3 News – 1 rating point is worth an estimated $3.5 million in advertising revenue

ONE News – 1 rating point is worth an estimated $4.1 million in advertising revenue


TV3 has said today that 900,000 viewers have tuned in to its new morning show, Firstline during the last 3 weeks. To provide context, in just one of those weeks (13-17 March) almost one million viewers tuned in to Breakfast.

This measurement is a cumulative figure called “reach” and measures the total number of people who watched a programme across a designated time period – so 962,000 viewers turned on Breakfast at some stage during the week13-17 March. Reach is rarely quoted because it measures every viewer rather than regular viewers and in advertising a viewer who watches for a few minutes once a week is not considered as important as someone who watches every day for half an hour.

TV3 has suggested today that Breakfast has lost audience since Firstline’s launch on March 7.

Nielsen TAM data shows Breakfast had an average audience during March of 150,600 viewers every morning compared to 154,940 in February – the minor difference in viewership is within the margin of error.

Since launching, Firstline has had an average of 25,000 viewers per morning. Breakfast’s audience is six times its size.

Breakfast’s audience is also up year-on-year. Last March it had an average of 138,000 viewers per morning compared to 150,600 last month where 12,000 more viewers watched each day.

“The sheer volume of Breakfast viewers is clear evidence that the audience likes the new presenting line up, the daily diet of news and business updates, location weather reports and wide variety of content we provide in the morning,” says Flannery.

“Right across the world successful morning TV programmes provide a deliberate mix of light and shade.

“Breakfast is well resourced and therefore able to fully update New Zealanders on everything that’s relevant – what’s happened while they’ve been asleep, what’s happening in the day ahead.

“It’s fresh, engaging and interactive. It was a ground breaker in terms of respecting and responding to its viewers.

“We’re confident we’ve got the mix right on Breakfast”.