ANALYSIS: MEDIA TRACK - Eyre bullish as schedule reshuffle helps ITV near peak-time share targets...XP.-< Page_09 Graph (omitted)

Last year, ITV’s proposal to move its News at Ten bulletin met with stiff opposition from the public and Government. The network hoped that the move, and other scheduling adjustments, would make peak-time slots more flexible, allow feature films to continue past 10pm - uninterrupted by the news - and so meet the ambitious peak-time share targets set by commercial director, John Hardie.

Last year, ITV’s proposal to move its News at Ten bulletin met with

stiff opposition from the public and Government. The network hoped that

the move, and other scheduling adjustments, would make peak-time slots

more flexible, allow feature films to continue past 10pm - uninterrupted

by the news - and so meet the ambitious peak-time share targets set by

commercial director, John Hardie.



At a recent presentation to agencies and advertisers, Hardie confirmed

that the channel is on course to achieve its peak-time share target of

39 per cent - share is currently running at 38.9 per cent. Indeed, chief

executive Richard Eyre assured advertisers that ITV would remain their

’best route to mass communication by a mile’ in the digital future.



Eyre claims people will want to interact with brands in the new digital

environment, which means strengthening the ITV brand now is crucial. ’I

believe that this relationship is going to underpin ITV’s proposition in

the future and preserve for you the neutron bomb of British advertising

- ITV peak-time - which still delivers a marketing punch out of all

proportion to any and all alternatives,’ he told advertisers and

agencies.



In terms of ratings, however, ITV’s performance for the first eight

months of this year does not look especially strong. Between January and

August, weekday peak-time ratings for adults were lower than 1997

figures for six of the eight months and far from consistently higher

than 1998. In August this year, an average minute of the ITV peak-time

schedule was being watched by 13.0 per cent of the adult TV population;

in August 1998 this was 12.4 per cent, but in 1997 the figure was 13.5

per cent and in August 1996 was higher still at 14.8 per cent.



According to the figures from the Institute of Practitioners in

Advertising, ITV’s peak-time share of viewing for the second quarter of

1999 came in at 37.5 per cent, below the network’s target.



MediaTel’s database is available at www.mediatel.co.uk. For more

information contact 0207-439 7575 or e-mail info@mediatel.co.uk



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Digital marketing executives oversee the online marketing strategy for their organisation. They plan and execute digital (including email) marketing campaigns and design, maintain and supply content for the organisation's website(s).