“Ping” was right. And, yes, that’s news. As WKMG sports anchor David Pingalore first reported Tuesday, former Florida Gators coach Urban Meyer accepted the head coaching job at The Ohio State University on Monday. While Ping said Meyer agreed to a 7-year, $40-million contract, USA Today says. “Meyer agreed to a six-year contract worth $4 million annually with retention bonuses for 2014, 2016 and 2018.” Local 6 was crowing about Ping’s scoop on Monday. Still waiting for this Ping scoop to happen. …
Following a 60 Minutes report on Sunday about homeless children in Central Florida, WKMG held a telethon on Monday. The station raised more than $19,000 and had additional offers of food and clothing. Nice job, Local 6. Read the full story here …
WKMG and WFTV weren’t able to agree on who won the demo crown for most viewers at 11 p.m. during the November sweeps — until now. Sentinel TV Guy Hal Boedeker reported Monday that in the fight for viewers in the 25-to-54 age group, Channel 9’s Eyewitness News averaged 29,000 viewers and WKMG’s Local 6 News had 28,300 — a difference of just 700 viewers. WFTV easily won in the household count in all newscasts. More November ratings results here. …
Former WKMG reporter Tarik Minor, now at WJXT-Channel 4 in Jacksonville, and wife Melanie Lawson are expecting a baby. Why is this news? Lawson, a morning anchor at the Jacksonville station, announced their happy news during a newscast on Friday. Click here for the video. …
An eagle-eyed Orlando TV news viewer sent us an email noting that WKMG did its Saturday night newscast “at a table in the newsroom.” Not sure what was up, but the Sixers were back at their regular anchor desk on Sunday night.
The folks at WFTV are missing Oprah right now. In the just completed July ratings, WESH 2 News finished ahead of Channel 9’s Eyewitness News at 5 p.m. in the 25-54 demo.
For years, WFTV’s 5 o’clock news benefited from following the Oprah Winfrey Show. But Oprah’s show is over — and so is the Casey Anthony trial — creating a new early news race for viewers. According to the Orlando Sentinel, WESH averaged 27,600 viewers at 5 p.m. to WFTV’s 27,200 in the 25-54 demographic. WOFL’s Fox 35 News averaged 15,300 while WKMG’s Local 6 News had 8,200.
WESH also finished No. 1 in the demo at 11 p.m. Still, when using total viewers, WFTV won all newscasts.
But anytime WFTV doesn’t win a news time period, it is news. And if you think not finishing No. 1 in the demo isn’t important to Channel 9, think again. Did you see the last-minute push WFTV rolled out — using a cash stunt to get viewers to watch the last 5 minutes of Oprah (which, leads into Eyewitness News)? If WESH remains strong at 5 p.m., look for more cash giveaways from Central Florida’s News Leader.
WFTV is reaching into its past to try to secure a ratings win in the November sweep.
Today and tomorrow — the last days of the sweep — Channel 9 is offering $5,000 to lucky morning news viewers. The reason?
“WFTV is the longtime leader in the 6 a.m. time slot and will win most news time slots in the November ratings period,” Orlando Sentinel TV Guy Hal Boedeker reports. “But WESH has been growing in the morning and enjoys a slight lead at 6 a.m. in the 25-to-54 age group measured through Friday. WESH has a 2.14 rating to WFTV’s 2.03. The 25-to-54 category is most important to news advertisers.”
WFTV wants to keep the morning news crown, so it’s putting up the cash to try to turn the ratings race in its favor. To longtime Orlando TV viewers, this should sound familiar.
It’s the same stunt WFTV has used before — to hold off WESH.
In February 2000, WFTV’s Eyewitness News trailed WESH’s “NewsChannel 2” newscast at 11 p.m. — until putting up a $5,000 “Watch and Win” promotion. Money talks.
“We were in first place at 11 until the last week, when Channel 9 did an instant cash giveaway and beat us,” then-WESH GM Bill Bauman said. “I would say that I am disappointed. I think we have a good news product and I’m proud of it.”
And if you have to pay people to watch your news, just how good is it?
WFTV-Channel 9’s Eyewitness News has been so dominate for so long, it’s news whenever it doesn’t finish No. 1 in a time period.
And that happened, sorta. During October, WESH 2’s Sunrise morning news — which is simulcast on sister station WKCF-CW18 — had more combined viewers in the 25-54 demo than WFTV’s Eyewitness News Daybreak. According to the Orlando Sentinel, the WESH-WKCF combo had 32,100 households from 6 to 7 a.m. while WFTV had 31,800.
If you break it down, WESH had 26,700 homes and WKCF had 5,400 — so head-to-head, WFTV still comes out on top. But that may be it when it comes to good news for WFTV.
Almost all of the area newscasts lost viewers in the demo year-over-year, but Channel 9 saw the most significant drop.
At 6 p.m., WFTV lost 13,400 viewers from 2009. At 5 p.m., it lost 14,900 from last year — while WESH actually grew by 5,000.
WFTV still dominates in all news periods when counting total viewers. Still, the question has to be asked: Could the October numbers protend a change in the longtime viewing patterns of Central Florida news watchers? Perhaps we’ll see when all the numbers are counted after the November sweep, which began last week.
Just as predictable as afternoon thunderstorms in the summer: WFTV and CBS were the big winners in Orlando in the just-completed May sweeps.
The juggernaut that is Channel 9’s Eyewitness News showed no signs of weakness. WFTV’s newscasts won in all time periods — morning, noon, evening and night.
According to results in the Orlando Sentinel, WFTV’s 6 p.m. newscast had more viewers (128,500 homes) than the combined audiences of WESH 2 News (68,300), WKMG’s Local 6 News (27,400) and WOFL’s Fox 35 News (23,900). The results were the same in the 25-to-54 demo: WFTV (40,100), WESH (15,700), WKMG (11,300) and WOFL (10,800).
Despite CBS’ popular prime-time lineup on WKMG finishing No. 1. locally, WFTV’s 11 p.m. news was tops — pulling 42,200 homes in the demo compared with 27,900 for WKMG, 21,200 for WESH and 15,500 for WOFL.
The only dent in WFTV’s armor? It’s 10 p.m. newscast on sister station WRDQ-TV 27 finished behind WOFL’s Fox 35 News at 10. Those 10 p.m. demo numbers: Fox 35 (27,000), WRDQ (16,500) and WESH’s news on WKCF (8,700).
April’s ratings are over. The May sweeps have begun. And Orlando TV stations are searching (and researching) for viewers.
First, back to April. WFTV-Channel 9’s Eyewitness News was once again the king of the hill in the morning, at noon, in the evening and at night. WESH 2 News was No. 2 most of the time. WKMG-Local 6 and WOFL-Fox 35 battled it out at the bottom in most news time periods.
The Orlando Sentinel reports that in the advertiser-coveted 25-54 age group, WFTV was tops at 11 p.m. Monday-Friday with 39,400 viewers. WKMG’s 26,000 edged out WESH with 25,500, and WOFL was the choice of 14,400. WESH and WKMG swapped positions in the Monday-Sunday tally.
Meanwhile, a tipster reports that one O-Town station is apparently conducting telephone research, focusing a lot on their morning show competition. In addition to asking about viewer tastes when it comes to news, researchers wanted participants to rate all of the morning talent on Channels 2, 6 and 9. Interesting.