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Investigation Discovery Analysis


A mix of repurposed acquisitions combined with catchy-named originals comprise ID’s schedule.  Premieres run nearly every night of the week, leading to nightly averages with no major fluctuations, a different scheduling strategy from many other networks in the cable landscape.  While theme nights are a little hard to discern (since the theme of the network is basically "investigation mysteries," Friday nights have traditionally featured programs about murders of people in relationships (DEADLY WOMEN, and newcomers PRETTY BAD GIRLS and WIVES WITH KNIVES.) While most programs are hours, ID is open to half-hours, and usually air two episodes back-to-back in the timeslot.


Live + SD Primetime Ratings Comparison / December 2012 vs. December 2011  (% Change)

Source: The Nielsen Company's National Television Audience Sample

As 2012 comes to a close, ID can celebrate a stellar year.  They are slowly starting to expand their brand, but they have successfully managed to grow their audience month after month. Throughout 2012, each month saw positive year-to-year growth, premieres are thriving, and there's no sign of slowing for 2013.

December closed out the year with a 31% growth in overall viewers compared to December 2011. Viewers in the younger demographics are up year-to-year, and both male and female demos saw increases.

December's Monday night primetime lineup featured a rotating lineup of programs in the 9pm slot, followed by I DIDN'T DO IT, then later in the month, DEVIL YOU KNOW and DISAPPEARED.  For the night, only DISAPPEARED hit average. ID FILMS: THE GREAT PRETENDER special also scored below average, but the night overall was up 8% compared to last year.

Tuesday nights in December were up 34% compared to December 2011.  The night was anchored by HOMICIDE HUNTER: LT JOE KENDA and then NIGHTMARE NEXT DOOR, in stacked episodes, later in the month. Premieres of both shows scored above network average for the month.

ID's Wednesday night lineup featured DATELINE, FINAL CUT, and back to back episodes of STALKED: SOMEONE'S WATCHING.  The night was up 29% in overall viewers. Ratings fluctuated a bit for all shows across the board, but STALKED grew its audience throughout the month.

Thursday night's 44% growth can be attributed to strong performances of VERY BAD MEN, which increased in numbers throughout the month.

Friday night's 26% increase was fueled by FACING EVIL, and aptly-named newcomers PRETTY BAD GIRLS, and WIVES WITH KNIVES. These series have the perfect mix of women and crime, and resonate extremely well with the ID audience.  Friday nights were the youngest-skewing of the week for ID in December

More in that genre on Saturday nights, which was the top night for ID in December.  The lineup was comprised of DEADLY WOMEN, MOTIVES & MUDERS, and FATAL VOWS.  The night was up 67% in overall viewers and is the strongest of the week for ID.

Sunday nights were anchored by a slew of ID staples, driving up viewership 17% compared to last year. With rotating episodes of 48 HOURS, FATAL ENCOUNTERS, ON THE CASE WITH PAULA ZAHN, and UNUSUAL SUSPECTS, most series hovered around average.  Top performing was UNUSUAL SUSPECTS in the 10pm slot.

It's clear that ID has tremendous momentum and an influx of new programming to keep viewers compelled and coming back for more.  For producers, it's also one of the few places that will potentially greenlight a paper pitch - just make sure your stories haven't been... "done to death."  In 2013, look for more originals from ID and look for a few more risks for ID to expand their mystery genre.