Labor Day Ratings Spike for Spike TV

As far as Spike TV was concerned, it was fine for people to kick off their shoes and park themselves in front of the small screen on Labor Day.

MTV Networks’ male-targeted service notched its best-ever total-day programming ratings Sept. 6 with a CSI: Crime Scene Investigation marathon. Spike was continuing that programming strategy throughout the bulk of this week as a prelude to moving the syndicated version of TV’s highest-rated show into a new time slot.

Under terms of the “shared-network-window” deal predecessor The New TNN inked with fellow Viacom Inc. company King World Productions for $1.6 million per episode, Spike had initially aired CSI Monday nights following WWE Raw at 11:05 p.m. and Fridays at 11 p.m. over the past six months.

Beginning Sept. 13, though, Spike will strip the forensics series weeknights at 7 p.m. and 8 p.m.

Running CSI installments from 9 a.m. Labor Day to 3 a.m. the following morning -- save for WWE Raw from 9 p.m.-11:05 p.m. Sept. 6 -- Spike averaged a 1.9 household rating and 2.29 million viewers over the span, according to Nielsen Media Research data. Network officials said that was 44% higher than the 1.32 household mark the network (then known as The Nashville Network) racked up with a combination of Star Trek films and Raw on Labor Day 2001.

The CSI marathon also merited note among Spike’s target audience of males 18-49, drawing 690,000 of those viewers, up 9% versus the same day in 2001. For the aforementioned time span, Spike ranked first with that demo among all basic-cable networks. The average male audience for the day was some 1.2 million, according to the company.

Among adults 18-49, Spike dug up a 29% gain versus Labor Day 2001 as the CSI stunt attracted 1.3 million of those viewers to finish first that day in cable -- a feat it matched among persons 18-34.

On Labor Day, the series ranked first in its upcoming 7 p.m. and 8 p.m. time slots among adults 18-49 and males 18-49 for all of basic cable.