Oprah Winfrey’s New TV Channel Needs Help!

Filed in Gather Entertainment News Channel by on March 1, 2011 0 Comments

Oprah Winfrey’s new television channel, OWN, is in serious need of viewers. In television’s unreal world, numbers are everything, and Oprah’s channel, since it went on the air in January, has had dismal numbers. Oprah’s TV baby, reports MailOnline, is down ten percent from the viewer following Discovery Health, the channel OWN replaced, enjoyed when it went under. Not good. Oprah has put her heart and soul—not to mention scads of money—into this venture. The figures come from Nielsen, as reported in the New York Times.

Viewership averages 135,000. This sounds like a really big number, but television runs in really huge numbers. Even worse, only about a quarter of those people watching are the demographic OWN wants to attract, that is, women 25 to 45.

Two things can shift the ratings struggle in OprahÂ’s favor. One, she, herself, has been a seldom-seen presence, while her own talk show is still in production. Maybe she should have made the dates simultaneous. After September, she will have more time to devote to getting her dream off the ground.

In addition, OWN has been relying too heavily on reruns and old stuff, when viewers have an insatiable appetite for new, new, new. Old and cozy doesnÂ’t bring the steady viewers in. Lisa Ling and Gayle King havenÂ’t brought in enough, although the list of new shows is steadily growing.

ThereÂ’s Dr. Phil, a show on groceries (doesnÂ’t everyone need groceries?), In the Bedroom with Dr. Laura Bergman, Kidnapped by the Kids, Miracle Detectives, and much, much more. Or, you could watch the best of Trading Spaces.

OWN’s website has shows and schedules. If you fit the demographic, remember—this is your channel, planned and executed with you in mind. And, of course, making money.

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© Cindy Kroiss 2011

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