Channel 5 overtakes ITV in race to lure young viewers

Channel 5 is beating ITV in the race to attract a younger AB1 audience.

Channel 5 is beating ITV in the race to attract a younger AB1


According to the latest Barb report, Channel 5 has fared better than ITV

in luring both the prized 16- to 24-year-old audience group, and male


The channel said the newcomers were attracted by its evening schedules

of movies such as The Rock and Braveheart, and the youth-friendly

programming it introduced in January.

Tanya O’Sullivan, business manager at Channel 5, confirmed that new

programmes such as Sex and Shopping, Driving Mum Crazy, Family

Confidences and Wild Wet and Windy had led to a host of advertisers

significantly increasing their adspend for the spring.

Clients like Red Bull, Universal Records, Nike and PlayStation are all

spending more with the channel compared with last year.

The latest figures taken from an audience profile report dated from the

start of the year recorded an 11 per cent increase in 16- to

24-year-olds viewers. This compares with a 9 per cent viewing increase

of 16- to 24-year-old viewers among ITV audiences for the same


A spokesperson for Channel 5 said the results are a clear indication

that the television channel is performing well in the sought-after AB

arena, despite the widely held opinion that its programming attracts a

more downmarket audience.

The ITV network contin-ues to dominate the over-55 sector.