Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Criminal Minds Ratings Averages For Season 7

Criminal Minds ratings for Season 7 were excellent despite the great competitors scheduled against it, and the fact that usually older shows do worse as they tend to lost viewers as the seasons go by.

Season 7 averages, and how they compare to those of Season 6, are as follow:
  • Live + Same Day DVR viewing (excluding repeats):
    • A18-49[1]: S7 → 3.38; S6 → 3.45 (a 0.07 difference is statistically completely irrelevant)
    • Total viewers[2]: S7 → 12.6 million; S6 → 13.5 million (around 900,000 viewers less on Wednesdays)
  • Live + 7 Days worth of DVR viewing (excluding repeats):
    • A18-49: S7 → 4.7; S6 → 4.5 (a difference of around 4.25% is statistically relevant)
    • Total viewers: S7 → 15.8 million; S6 → 16.3 million (around 500,000 viewers less )
                 [1]: Every rating point represents 1% of the US population between 18 and 49 years.
                       It's rounded from 4 decimal points to only 2 before being made public.
                 [2]: The number isn't accurate, but rounded by Nielsen before being made public.

To read accurately those numbers, and understand why we are saying they are excellent, several things must be explained:
  • Of the 2 measurements detailed, in the US the important one is the A18-49 rating. For a show to be successful from its network point of view, it must generate benefits thus earning enough money from the commercials aired during the breaks. US Advertisers opted decades ago to give relevance to viewers between the ages of 18 and 49, paying premium rates to reach those viewers, so the higher demo a show gets, the safer and most valuable it becomes.
  • The fact that Criminal Minds has lost total viewers, but has gotten the same or higher demo numbers, means that the average age of its viewers has become younger. Losing viewers is expected; losing viewers over 49 but gaining younger ones is a phenomenon rarely seen, as usually viewers age at the same rate than the shows themselves, specially if we're talking of shows with so many season on air as Criminal Minds
  • Translating the demo number for L + 7 days DVR we get that last season 2.62 million people did DVR Criminal Minds; this season 3.14 million people did DVR it. This is in line with the increase in the DVR usage in general; more people are recording shows to watch them at their convenience. This is true for all broadcast shows as seen here: 2010-2011 DVR L + 7 days viewing, compared to here: 2011-2012 DVR L + 7 days viewing.
  • On CBS, Criminal Minds ranks as #2 drama in the demo and #5 drama in total viewers. 
  • Last, but not least, Criminal Minds is the only show on CBS facing the #1 show on TV, American Idol, Wednesday edition, and #1 comedy on TV, Modern Family. Despite that Criminal Minds finished as #2 drama on CBS in the rating measurement that really matters (CM 3.38 against NCIS 3.77)!
So, when it comes to ratings, Criminal Minds is doing very well despite the competition dished out by  ABC and FOX's big guns. And CBS recognized this through his Executive Vice President, Program Planning & Scheduling of CBS Television Twitter account, answering to the questions of several concerned fans, saying: "i'll pay #CriminalMinds the ultimate compliment, it always delivers and you never, ever need to worry about it."

Congratulations to the cast, producers, writers and crew for another successful year!


  1. Yo America is SUPER SWEET on CM.
    What about Canada???.
    I VCR it> what about all those who chose this option?
    What about all those who watched on the Internet @ whatever times?
    & different time zones
    How can they tell who is watching & how many bodies per TV?

    GO CM GO !!!!

  2. DVR or VCR, doesn't matter which one is used are measured the exact same way than live viewing.

    Some 25,000 US households, representative of the whole US population, have connected to their TVs, DVRs, VCRs, and any other gadget able to get a TV signal, a Nielsen Box that's able to record with accuracy what is being watched and by whom, as each member of those families has assigned a number in the remote of said box that they must press every several minutes so Nielsen is sure they're paying attention to the show, and commercials!!, currently on their screens.

    About watching through the Internet, the measurement is done too and it's even more accurate, as it doesn't depend on statistics, so the networks get exact numbers. It's not included in the above article due to the fact that shows streamed on the web hold different commercials, in different numbers & are billed at different rates; all of it doesn't amount to enough profit to be of importance to make a big impact in a show final numbers.

    Canada's ratings, or any other country's, don't really matter as the decision to schedule or cancel a show depends on the original US network to be able to make a profit out of it, and the bulk of that comes from the commercials aired during the show scheduled hour. Only if the network is too the producer of any given show, syndication deals inside the US or international sales can make a small impact on a show future.

    Hope this helps!

  3. Numbers and ratings nerd alert! *points to self*

    Soooooooooooooooooooo good to read this in one place and specially to find averages that don't include repeats! :D

    I agree wholeheartedly, those ratings are beyond good for any show, specially for a CBS show and even more for a 7 years old CBS show!

    CONGRATULATIONS to all involved in making CRIMINAL MINDS from me too!

    pssst... concerned, my Knight? I'm one of those fans our esteemed CBS scheduler answered to, and believe me, that's to put it VERY mildly! LOL!! We badgered the poor guy left and right until he caved and confessed! ;-))


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