Discovery and NBC trumpet record ratings for PyeongChang
Discovery, the media giant that owns Eurosport, the pan-European sports broadcaster, has reported that its channels attracted a combined free-to-air and pay TV audience of 186 million for the opening weekend of the PyeongChang 2018 winter Olympic Games.
An additional 26 million users also watched through digital and social platforms, Discovery said, resulting in 212 million users viewing the games across all platforms.
Discovery described the figures as “a game-changing start to the company’s inaugural Olympic Winter Games as Home of the Olympics in Europe, with strong linear and digital engagement on its own platforms and those of its partners.”
Discovery said that 373 million hours of PyeongChang 2018 video was watched across Europe, according to its new ‘Total Video’ measurement, which aims to capture viewing across all screens and platforms. Meanwhile, there was a total of 1.1 million engagements (likes, shares and comments) across Discovery’s social media platforms.
Almost 88 million users watched the opening ceremony last Friday across free-to-air, pay-TV, online and social platforms, Discovery said, with Jean-Briac Perrette, president and chief executive of Discovery Networks International, adding: “From the beginning, Discovery set an ambitious vision to bring the Olympic Games to more people across more screens in Europe than ever before. This new approach required a new way of capturing a more accurate picture of fan engagement and we are excited to announce our first set of Total Video – the new ‘TV’ -- metrics.”
Discovery channels also claimed record shares in Norway, Sweden and Germany, the broadcaster said, adding: “Discovery’s Kanal 5 in Sweden achieved its highest ever audience share of 73 per cent on Saturday with the first medal of PyeongChang 2018 going to Charlotte Kalla in women’s skiathlon.
“Thanks to an impressive start in the medal race from Norway, achieving nine Olympic Medals in the initial days of competition, Eurosport and Discovery’s Olympic content was consumed by over 3 Million Norwegians on Sunday Feb 11th, and Discovery’s TVNorge achieved a highest-ever 90-per-cent audience share for the Men’s 10km Sprint Biathlon Final.
“In Germany, Andreas Wellinger’s superb display to win the Men’s Ski Jump Final on Saturday Feb 10th helped contribute to Discovery Germany achieving its own all-time high, delivering nearly 2 million unique users on owned and operated, digital and social media properties in the first few days of the Games.”
Discovery retained exclusive rights to the PyeongChang games in both Norway and Sweden, but struck a sub-licensing deal in Germany with ARD and ZDF, the public-service broadcasters.
Meanwhile, NBC, the US Olympic broadcaster, said that half of all US television households have already watched the games on the networks of NBCUniversal, with a total of 110 million TV viewers tuning in.
That means that more than one-third of the country’s population have watched the games on NBC networks, according to data provided by Nielsen.
Last night’s NBC and NBCSN viewership peaked at nearly 27 million viewers during US star Chloe Kim’s final run as she won the halfpipe gold medal.
NBC Sports Digital’s presentation has been accessed by 6.6 million unique devices – placing it ahead of the 2016 Rio Olympics (6 million at the comparable date) and more than tripling the 2014 Sochi Olympics (1.8 million at this point).
NBC’s coverage of the first five days has exceeded the guarantees given to advertisers, with Mark Lazarus, chairman of NBC Sports, saying of viewers: “What we have seen here is people are coming for the Olympics and they are staying at relatively even levels throughout the evening.”
The performance has meant that NBC can go back to the market to sell advertising spots that it had held back to compensate advertisers, if the guarantees had not been met. Lazarus said: “The advertisers are already letting us know that they’re seeing results, they’re feeling very positive about their investment in the Olympics. Our ratings success has increased our capacity [in ways] that we weren’t expecting.”Sportcal