Audience Results - Television
While funding results in this annual report illustrate activities in the 2016-2017 fiscal year, audience results reflect the most recently completed broadcast year, specifically, 2015-2016.
Overall English-language Viewing Trends
Canadian vs. foreign programs
Domestically-produced programs accounted for 39% of full-day viewing in English-language television, no change from the previous year. During peak-viewing hours, 37% of English-language television viewing was devoted to Canadian programming, up 1 share point from the previous year. This is the second highest share for Canadian programming in 5 years, although the fluctuations year-over-year have been relatively minor (hovering between 34% and 38% since 2011-2012).
CMF-funded genres vs. other genres
Overall viewing to English-language programs, both domestic and foreign produced, in the four CMF-supported genres (Children’s & Youth, Documentary, Drama and Variety & Performing Arts) dropped two share points to 39% for full day, with shifts totaling approximately two share points towards amateur and professional sports programming (Rio Olympics aired in August 2016). The peak hour share to CMF-supported genres’ dropped two points to 42% compared to the previous year, another five-year low. Viewing in peak hours shifted one point towards professional sports (perhaps a reflection of strong teams including Blue Jays and Raptors playoff runs), and one point towards news (partly as a result of a news-heavy year including the 2015 Fall Canadian federal election and the contentious 2016 American electoral campaign).
CMF-funded programs vs. non-funded Canadian programs
When examining full-day viewership to Canadian programs in only the CMF-supported genres, share to CMF-funded programs dropped one point from the previous year to 51%, equaling a 5-year low from 2011-2012. In peak-viewing hours, CMF-funded programs dropped six points to a 53% share from a year ago, also a 5-year low. Lower performing programs particularly in drama and documentary are largely responsible for this drop.
Overall Viewing of English-language programs in CMF-supported Genres
In 2015-2016, CMF-financed English-language content dipped to 5-year lows in total hours tuned. CMF share of viewing during peak periods also dipped to 5 year lows. There has been a slight decline in overall consumption to linear television, down approximately 2.6% from last year, as additional platforms for viewing content are now starting to take hold in the Canadian market. However, there has also been a marked softening of audiences to CMF-financed content this year, especially in peak hour drama and documentary programming. Of note, total scheduled hours to all CMF content rose by almost 9% from the previous year yet total hours tuned still declined by over 10%.
In Children’s & Youth, the share of full-day viewing to CMF-funded programs rose by seven share points to 43%, highest in 10 years, while viewing to non-CMF Canadian programs decreased by three share points to 9%. In peak viewing hours, viewing to CMF-funded programs rose by five share points to 51%. These share gains notwithstanding, CMF-funded hours tuned has decreased by over 25% since 2012-2013. This genre is one of the most susceptible to changing consumption patterns due to new technologies, with children’s content readily accessible on alternate platforms including tablets and OTT services that are favoured by younger consumers.
In Documentary, the share of full-day viewing to CMF-funded content fell by two share points to 20%, while viewing to foreign content rose by two share points to 48%. In peak-viewing hours, viewing levels to CMF-funded content dropped by two share points to 20% while non-CMF-funded Canadian content increased by three points to 30%. Consumption in peak hours was significantly lower for the top CMF documentary content this year versus last, with the top 10 projects some 22% lower in hours tuned despite a 9% increase in number of episodes aired.
In Drama, the full-day share of viewing to CMF-funded content remained stable at 8%, while shares to viewing in peak hours dipped by one share point to 8%, lowest in 5 years. Hours tuned for CMF-funded content in peak periods was 21% lower while hours scheduled posted a 12% decrease this year versus last. Additionally, when examining Canadian-produced content only there was a large 7-point shift in peak hours share from CMF-funded to non-CMF-funded Canadian content. An analysis of titles suggests that an increase in number of non-CMF-eligible service productions or those with less than 10/10 CAVCO points (including movies-of-the-week) aired by broadcasters is contributing to this shift. Furthermore, the availability of certain high performing CMF titles on OTT services may also be shifting viewing away from traditional linear channels.
In Variety & Performing Arts, the share of full-day viewing to CMF-funded content dropped by two share points to 25%, while viewing to non-CMF Canadian projects rose by two points to 4%. During peak hours, viewing to CMF-funded programs dropped one share point to 15%, while viewing to non-CMF Canadian programs grew three points to 4% and the share of hours tuned to foreign programs slid two points to 80%. There is relatively little content in this genre compared to Children’s & Youth, Drama and Documentary and therefore shifts in this genre do not typically affect the overall aggregate share of viewing to CMF content.
Top Performing CMF-funded English-Language Programs
The following is a list of the Top 10 English-language programs funded by the CMF which aired during the 2015-2016 broadcast year.
Seven CMF-funded programs airing in the 2015-2016 broadcast year achieved average audiences of over 1 million viewers. Seven of the top ten programs were from the Drama genre, achieving audiences that ranged from just 836,000 to 1.4 million viewers. Three Variety & Performing Arts programs ranging in audience from 850,000 to 1.2 million viewers made the Top Ten list.
The top performing CMF-funded English-language program, Murdoch Mysteries, averaged 1.4 million viewers followed by Saving Hope at 1.3 million. The top domestic programs overall were The Tragically Hip (Final Concert) at 4.3 million viewers, followed by the CFL Grey Cup at 4.1 million viewers, Rio 2016 Olympic Games on CBC at 2.3 million and The Amazing Race Canada at 2.1 million.
By way of comparison, the top performing foreign series in a CMF-supported genre, The Big Bang Theory, attracted an average audience of 3.7 million viewers during the regular season, while five other drama series (The X-Files, NCIS, NCIS: New Orleans, Criminal Minds, Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders) delivered over 2 million viewers on average. For added context, the program with the largest audience overall in 2015-2016 was the NFL Super Bowl at 7.3 million viewers.
|Rank||Broadcaster||Program Title||Day||Time||CMF Genre||# Telecasts||Viewers Age 2+ Average Minute Audience (000)|
|1||CBC||Murdoch Mysteries||Mon||8:00pm - 9:00pm||Drama||20||1,437|
|2||CTV||Saving Hope||Thu||9:00pm - 10:00pm||Drama||18||1,263|
|3||CBC||Air Farce New Year's Eve||Thu||8:00pm - 9:00pm||Variety & Performing Arts||1||1,247|
|4||CBC||Ron James Fast Forward||Thu||9:00pm - 10:00pm||Variety & Performing Arts||1||1,158|
|5||CBC||Heartland||Sun||7:00pm - 8:00 pm||Drama||18||1,058|
|6||Global||Private Eyes||Thu||9:00pm - 10:00pm / 10:00pm - 11:00pm||Drama||10||1,057|
|7||CTV||Motive||Tue||10:00pm - 11:00pm||Drama||11||1,031|
|8||CBC||Rick Mercer Report||Tue||8:00pm - 8:30pm||Drama||19||954|
|9||CBC||Canadian Country Music Awards 2015||Sun||8:00pm - 10:00pm||Variety & Performing Arts||1||850|
|10||CBC||Schitt's Creek||Tue||9:00pm - 9:30pm||Drama||13||836|
Source: CMF Research (Numeris) 2015-2016 Broadcast Year, Original Airings Only
Overall French-language Viewing Trends
Canadian vs. foreign programs
Canadian programs continued to account for the majority of viewing in the French-language market with a 58% share of full-day viewing, down one percentage point from the previous year and a 5-year low. This is also the lowest share of viewing to Canadian content observed since the CMF began tracking this data dating back to 2005-2006. In peak hours, the share of viewing to Canadian programs in 2015-2016 dropped one percentage points to 60%, another all-time record low.
Year-over-year tuning to foreign reality, theatrical and versioned content continues to grow as French-language broadcasters incrementally increase hours scheduled in these project types. The French viewing market has however, unlike the English market, been less susceptible to the advent of new non-linear viewing platforms. Overall total hours tuned to French television declined by only 1% over the past 5 years, whereas English television viewing has posted close to a 9% decline since 2011-2012.
CMF-funded genres vs. other genres
Share of viewing to CMF-supported genres in the French-language market was at 44% for both full-day and peak hour viewing in 2015-2016, no change from the previous year. There was a small one point decline in viewing to drama in peak periods, while shares to VAPA content increased by one-point. Shares to all other CMF genres in peak periods and all CMF genres during the full day remained unchanged from the previous year.
CMF-funded programs vs. non-funded Canadian programs only
When examining viewership exclusively to Canadian content in CMF-supported genres, CMF funded content captured a 49% share of full-day viewing, steady for the past 4 years. In peak hours, CMF-funded content captured a 69% share, an increase of one percentage point from last year and a record high since the CMF began tracking this data in 2005-2006. Changes in the definition of eligible CMF projects to include in-house programming, the broadening of the VAPA genre definition as well as several marquee drama and VAPA projects continuing to attract record number of viewers have contributed to these significant gains in audience share over the years.
Overall Viewing of French-language programs in CMF-supported Genres
For French-language content in the CMF-supported genres, there was no change in full day share of viewing to CMF-funded content compared to last year. During peak hours there was also no change in share to CMF-funded content but there was a one point increase in share of viewing to foreign content, driven in part by a slight increase in hours tuned for foreign drama.
In Children’s & Youth, the share of full-day viewing to CMF-funded content increased by two points to 50% from the previous year while viewing to non-CMF Canadian programs dropped by three points. In peak viewing hours, the share of CMF-funded programs dropped by one point to 59%, which continues a trend of ongoing decline in CMF share over the past six years.
In Documentary, full-day share viewing to CMF-funded content grew two points from the previous year to 13%, while peak hour viewing to CMF-funded content increased by three share points to 19% both generally at the expense of non-CMF-supported Canadian programs. Overall, CMF-financed Documentaries scheduled during peak hours attracted 13% more tuning but with a 22% increase in hours scheduled compared to the previous year, suggesting that share growth is being driven by an increase in the amount of content aired.
In Drama, full-day viewing to CMF-funded programs dropped by one share point to 24%. In peak hours, share viewing to CMF-funded programs dropped by two points to 39%. Viewing to foreign produced dramas increased by one and two share points during full day and peak hours respectively. There was a marked decline in both hours tuned to CMF-financed drama during peak periods (down 7.7%) and hours scheduled (down 3.5%), while hours of foreign dramas scheduled in peak hours grew by 6.5% from last year.
In Variety & Performing Arts, full-day viewing to CMF-funded programs dropped two share points to 84%. In peak hours, viewing to CMF-funded programs also dropped two points to 87%. Strong performance to the unfunded series Gala Comediha drove CMF shares down slightly, although this series is CMF funded for the upcoming 2016-2017 broadcast year. CMF’s otherwise near dominance in this genre continues to be driven by the broadening of the definition of CMF-eligible Variety & Performing Arts, allowing for marquee projects such as La Voix to be counted as a CMF-funded.
Top Performing CMF-funded French-Language Programs
The following is a list of the Top 10 French-language programs funded by the CMF which aired during the 2015-2016 broadcast year.
All titles on the Top 10 list achieved audiences of more than 1 million viewers, a further eight titles have also met this criterion, bringing the number of CMF programs with over one million viewers to eighteen in total. The top two CMF-financed projects (Bye Bye 2015, La Voix) were also the top projects overall, in any genre, foreign or domestic, in 2015-2016.
Four of the Top 10 programs were from the Variety & Performing Arts genre, achieving audiences that ranged from 1.8 to 4.1 million viewers. Six programs on the Top 10 list were Drama projects, with audiences that ranged from 1.5 to 2.1 million viewers. No programs from either Documentary or Children’s & Youth genres made the Top 10 list.
The top performing CMF-funded French-language project, Bye Bye 2015 was watched by close to 4.1 million viewers, while the top performing series, La Voix, was watched by close to 2.7 million viewers. By way of comparison, the top performing foreign series in a CMF-supported genre, Le Dôme (aka Under The Dome), attained on average of 745,000 viewers, almost 250,000 viewers lower than the previous year. Five other foreign series (Downton Abbey, Vengeance, Du talent à revendre, Chicago Fire: Caserne 51, M. Selfridge) posted audiences of at least 500,000 viewers on average, up from four the year before.
|Rank||Broadcaster||Program Title||Day||Time||CMF Genre||# Telecasts||Viewers Age 2+
|1||SRC||Bye Bye 2015||Thu||11:00pm - 12:15am||Variety & Performing Arts||1||4,094|
|2||TVA||La Voix||Sun||5:30pm - 9:35pm||Variety & Performing Arts||13||2,672|
|3||SRC||Unité 9||Tue||8:00pm - 9:00pm||Drama||24||2,132|
|4||SRC||Infoman (Special)||Thu||10:00pm - 11:00pm||Variety & Performing Arts||1||2,062|
|5||TVA||Les Beaux Malaises||Wed||9:00pm - 9:30pm||Drama||11||1,909|
|6||TVA||Gala Artis 2016||Sun||8:00pm - 10:48pm||Variety & Performing Arts||1||1,845|
|7||SRC||Les Pays d'en haut||Mon||9:00pm - 10:00pm||Drama||10||1,686|
|8||TVA||Pour Sarah||Mon||9:00pm - 10:00pm||Drama||10||1,557|
|9||TVA||Boomerang||Mon||7:30pm - 8:00pm||Drama||12||1,537|
|10||TVA||Yamaska||Mon||8:00pm - 9:00pm||Drama||24||1,488|