Ratings Boost for ‘Meet the Press,’ Leads Among Viewers Under 50

AP Photo/Charles Dharapak
AP Photo/Charles Dharapak

After years of failing ratings with former host David Gregory, NBC’s “Meet the Press” is gaining ratings with Chuck Todd in the driver’s seat. It is even hitting its stride among the Sunday political shows with viewers under 50 years of age.

Along with former host David Gregory’s personality clashes with NBC’s management, Gregory’s ratings were not great. By August of 2014, Gregory was out and Chuck Todd was in. But for months, Todd’s ratings were actually worse than Gregory’s, causing many an industry tongue to wag that Todd was a poor choice to replace Gregory.

But recently, Todd has been bringing viewers back to “Meet The Press” and has experienced a ratings surge. And while “Meet” is still in third place among the big three networks, it has picked up considerably and even gained a steady viewership with the younger Sunday morning audience.

As Variety reports this week, Todd has posted the top NBC May sweeps averages in three years. “Meet” has seen “nice year-over-year ratings gains for the May sweep. According to Nielsen ‘live plus same-day’ estimates, it shot up 31% in adults 25-54 (to 826,000) and 11% in total viewers (to 2.61 million).”

While the overall ratings still kept the show in third place, it has come in with competitive numbers instead of lagging far behind as it has for years.

As to that most-favored target demographic of viewers aged 25 to 50, “Meet the Press” has “averaged 623,000 adults under 50, followed by 584,000 for ‘This Week’ and 563,000 for the first half-hour of ‘Face the Nation,'” Variety said.

“Meet” also topped the ratings with the audience in Washington D.C., an important audience for the Sunday politics talk shows.

Still, it’s not all good news, and Chuck Todd still has some ground to make up if he is to be called a winner. ABC’s “This Week with George Stephanopoulos,” for instance realized a back-to-back May sweep victory over “Meet the Press” and was up 15 percent in the target demo.

Further, CBS’s “Face The Nation” still finished as the most watched Sunday show.

Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston, or email the author at igcolonel@hotmail.com.


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