First quarter 2009 has been a record breaking time for ION Television, with double digit growth in primetime viewership among households as well as in the key adults 25-54 demo. The Network delivered more adults 25-54 than at any other time in its history and ION’s top five most watched episodes ever (HH) all aired during the first three months of this year. ION’s growth is credited upon its strategy to build viewership through its acquisitions of critically acclaimed off-network series in primetime.
Primetime delivery for households was up 26%, while adults 25-54 rose 44%, year over year. Also during this time period, viewership for adults 25-54 exhibited double digit growth across every hour in primetime: The 8:00 PM hour was up 20%, the 9:00 PM hour grew 49% and the 10:00 PM hour rose 62%.
ION’s primetime off network series continue to deliver. NCIS and Boston Legal have both grown significantly since their launch in Q4 2008. In fact, NCIS delivered ION’s top five most watched episodes ever (HH), reinforcing the Network’s mission in attracting more viewers than ever. NCIS averaged over one million total viewers in Q1, up 27% among households and up 31% among adults 25-54. Boston Legal’s first quarter 2009 performance has grown 18% among households and 17% among adults 25-54.
ION’s ratings gains provide the network with considerable momentum as it prepares its programming schedule for the 2009-10 season and beyond. That schedule will feature 12 originally produced movies a year, the new first run series Durham County, The Border and The Guard and the newly acquired off-network hits Ghost Whisperer and Criminal Minds.