The ability to invest in high-quality TV drama will mark the battle
ground for TV audiences over the next few years, as ITV struggles to
keep pace with the BBC in financing top-notch drama series, according to
a report from the Billett Consultancy.
The report, from the BBC’s former head of broadcast research services,
Sue Stoessl, claims the BBC has reined in its costs and now has the
money to make more drama and comedy shows - key drivers of audience.
According to Stoessl, if ITV revenue continues to fall in relative
terms, its drama output will decline and this will conspire to drive
down ITV audiences. She said: ’I cannot be optimistic for ITV. It has
started the downward spiral which will continue, made worse by the
Channel 4 formula coming to an end.’
She also believes News at Ten is a weak point in the ITV schedule as
long as it stays at 10pm. However, Stoessl said that even moving the
slot elsewhere ’would mean a loss of high AB ratings on ITV’.