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MEDIACOM Marketing Digest 04 February 2004

MEDIACOM Marketing Digest 04 February 2004

04 FEBRUARY 2004

To no-one's surprise, NZ IDOL has made its debut with killer ratings results. More than 1.1 million viewers over five tuned in at some time during Sunday's launch hour, with an average of 885,600 people spread across the timeslot. 31% of TV2's target demographic, All People 18-39, watched the programme, making NZ IDOL one of the highest rating shows ever on TV2.

And what about the poor contestants? Approximately four thousand wannabes filled 500 hours of footage, which post-production teams of 20 people have watched and edited around the clock since auditions started.

Of the 4000 hopefuls, a mere 60 successful applicants will come to Auckland to perform in front of the judges.

Public voting will begin on February 22. Viewers will be able to vote by text message or 0900 phone call. The polls will close at 6pm on Mondays with half-hour results shows every Monday night.

As you can see, it's a show that soaks up a huge chunk of time, talent and resources, so TVNZ will be breathing a massive sigh of relief at the ratings so far. It's a safe bet that the show will continue to rate strongly, peaking with the final countdown.

Thursday, May 6 is the magical date when NBC will be airing the definitely final finale of the series Friends, selling at an astounding rate of US$2 million per 30-second spot.

And, at that price, it's sold out.

Not quite so pricey are 30-seconders being sold in a one-hour Friends clip show that will precede the finale. The price commanded there is is a mere US$1.25 million per unit.

Just those two shows alone will yield the network more than $70 million. The final numbers aren't firm yet, because the exact length of the finale is being determined. It'll be about an hour but could run a little less or a little more.

The price for the finale is more than five times the average price NBC got for the show in fourth quarter 2003, which was about $380,000 per 30 seconds. Best guess of the likely audience - 30-35% of the US population.

The highest-rated US network telecast of all time is the 1983 M*A*S*H finale, which Nielsen reports reached 60% of the US population. No. 2 was the "Who Shot JR?" Dallas episode (1980), which scored with 53%.

We don't yet have any advance warning on when the Friends finale will air in New Zealand, but we comfortably predict that the show will carry Special Event pricing. No, it won't be two million dollars a spot, but the show's local screening will carry very indulgent premium pricing, for an audience likely to be in the 25-30% range. Still, what's a little price-gouging between friends?

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Shock! Horror! Announcing the debut of Reality Check, a new US special interest magazine devoted entirely to the phenomenon known as reality television. 48 pages devoted to the behind-the-scenes drama of reality shows! Featuring exclusive interviews with reality shows' stars and execs, and exposing the scandalous stories left on the cutting room floor!

Reality Check's first cover story is The Real Clay Aiken and includes exclusive interviews! Special Features include: Reality TV's Horror Stories, How To Get on a Reality Show, Reality TV's Biggest Scandals plus a rundown on Reality Stars' latest fashion hits and misses. The issue also includes a special report on How "Real" is Reality TV.

How did we ever live without it?

ABOUT MEDIACOM

MEDIACOM, with offices in 80 countries, is one of the world's largest and most respected media service companies.

We create media solutions that build business for a wide range of local, regional and worldwide clients.

With $10 billion in global billings, a commitment to strategic insight, total communications planning, tactical media brilliance and tough but creative media negotating, MEDIACOM provides unsurpassed value in today's chaotic media marketplace.

The humble letterbox has had something of a bad rep in recent years, perceived as groaning with unaddressed, unwanted mailers, brochures and catalogues. Now PMP come to the rescue, aided and abetted by Roy Morgan Research, to dispel some of the most prevalent myths about the great unaddressed.

Perhaps the most important question - do people actually read these mailers/catalogues? - is quickly answered:

* 14% of the total population looked at all catalogues delivered in the past four weeks
* 39% looked at most of them
* 46% looked at some of them
* only 1% claimed not to look at any of them

Another important question: what action do you take after reading a catalogue?

* 9% "very often" buy something seen in catalogues, while 25% do so "quite often"
* 9% "very often" visit stores/outlets seen in catalogues, with 30% doing so "quite often"

Other facts you should know:

* 86% read catalogues "just to browse and see if anything catches my eye"
* 78% read catalogues to "hunt for bargains"
* 86% start their shopping process with information from catalogues, 60% from TV, 52% from newspapers, 25% from radio (which means that people gather info from more than one source)

These results come from a survey of 1005 Kiwis interrogated by Roy Morgan Research on behalf of PMP. We're surrounded by stacks of data on the merely unaddressed, so for more details feel free to call us.

ACP have been in our minds a lot this past week, for a variety of reasons. Firstly, they've been in touch to show us their version of Air New Zealand Magazine, for which they take over publishing duties from April. They're working to a print run of 60,000 for each monthly issue, through which they "have the opportunity" to reach 750,000 travellers a month - 272,000 of them passengers travelling for business. We've long held the belief that the captive audience would react enthusiastically to useful, meaningful business stories -- but, alas, ACP have opted for the good-looking but ultimately unsatisfying editorial that has characterised the Air New Zealand Magazine in its various incarnations over the years. Oh well.

ACP have also been the bearer of sad tidings, announcing the imminent demise of About Kids. Publishing on dead trees is an expensive endeavour, and magazines come and go as a result. Anyway, ACP still publish Little Treasures under contract, so they still have the chance to influence the young and their proud parents!

And the third reason that ACP have been on our minds -- the incredible shrinking Metro Guide. This what's-on guide in the pages of Metro is reducing its page dimensions to a more economic paper size. Alas, the economies of scale are not being passed on to ye worthy advertisers - rates are staying the same. What was that about unkind cuts?

The world's first ever text message is believed to have been sent from a personal computer (PC) to a mobile phone on the Vodafone UK network in December 1992.

In New Zealand the service was introduced when the first text capable mobile phone (the Nokia 2110) became available in December 1994.

The number of text messages sent every day in NZ has grown from less than 60,000 in November 1999 to more than 1.8 million every day, just five years later.

Some key milestones for texting in New Zealand:

* Christmas Day 2001 over 1.9 million
* New Years Eve 2001 over 1.5 million
* New Years Day 2002 over 1.6 million
* Christmas Day 2002 over 3 million
* New Years Eve 2002 over 2.2 million
* New Years Day 2003 over 2.5 million

The younger people are, the more likely they are to text, according to a recent UK survey by mobile phone insurer CPP. More than eight out of ten people under the age of 25 are more likely to send someone a text message than call.

But, at the other end of the scale, just 14% of those aged over 55 said they preferred to text.

Published by MEDIACOM (NZ) LIMITED, P O Box 3369 Auckland New Zealand, Phone 09 914 4940 Fax 09 914 4903 Editorial Comments or requests: newsletter@mediacom.co.nz To subscribe to this newsletter, please send an email with SUBSCRIBE in the subject line to subscribe@mediacom.co.nz


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