You know, those weekly top 20 Nielsen rankings are all well and good, but they never tell the whole story. Those ratings are not what advertisers really care about. Yes, the top shows in the Nielsens get a ton of advertising and the staggering amount of viewers that, say, Grey's Anatomy receives cannot be underscored. However, there are myriad shows that you won't find on the generic Nielsen's that are big hits, and that is because they key on target demographics.
America's Next Top Model is one of these shows. Although, being on The CW has hurt its overall exposure, Top Model has become one of the biggest hits in a key demographic: 18-34 females. That's a pretty formidable age group, especially in the eyes of an advertiser. Last week, America's Next Top Model ranked #8 out of all shows in that demographic and in the process bolstered the CW's line-up.
Also, America's Next Top Model ranked #20 in 18-34 adults. Not bad for a show about aspiring models. It seems there are more dudes watching Top Model than one would think. Frankly, The CW needs a couple more of shows on the level of Top Model. They need to gain credibility if they want to one day become one of the big networks. Top Model could be the start, the network's flagship show, like what Beverly Hills 90210 was to FOX.
But, I'm not holding my breath. They need another one or two shows to hit the stratosphere before they can hang with the big boys. Tyra Banks and company may not have too many years left. Although the big reality shows have shown impressive longevity, Top Model is already in its eight cycle and you have to wonder how long Tyra wants to keep going. Nonetheless, The CW will continue to bank on the success of America's Next Top Model for the foreseeable future.
-Oscar Dahl, BuddyTV Senior Writer
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