World of Sport held their eighth episode this past weekend on ITV. The viewership data is in and it’s not pretty. Episode 8 averaged 300,000 viewers (3.9% share), down a sharp 40% from the previous week’s 500,000 viewers (5% share).
We need to revisit the sentiments from last week’s first show in the new 4:0pm time slot (this week was 4pm). It’s clear that the change from 5pm to 4:30pm played a huge role in the ratings drop from weeks 5, 6 and to 7. With the ITV Evening News changing by 30 minutes the rest of the schedule had to follow suit and this appears to have hurt WoS by a few hundred thousand viewers. Again the number isn’t pretty to look at but a time change affects most programmes across many genres. This isn’t uncommon for WWE either, when special time changes occur for RAW and Smackdown this affects their numbers.
The numbers for WoS WERE steadily increasing, week 5 saw a height of 900 thousand viewers and an overall rating of 700k. Again The live tour for 2019 is an excellent sign of ITV investment in the show, both monetarily and in figurative terms. However this new drop in the 4:00pm time slot is not something to celebrate.
Time Change to 2:30pm Next Week
Once again the time will be changing for the show. This has been extremely detrimental to the show over the past few weeks but does make sense given the commercial impact of Saturday nights in the UK. ITV have a huge ratings war on their hands when it comes to their X Factor show and the BBC 1 Strictly Come Dancing programme (Dancing With the Stars in the United States). Moving the WoS programme to a pre-Premier League timeslot (most games start at 3pm) could be a bonus but again if you’re establishing a new show in it’s first season then multiple time changes are going to hurt.
As we’ve mentioned previously there will likely be a season 2…but it might not be on the mainstay ITV channel. Moving the WoS programme to an ITV2 could be ideal to establishing a more niche genre (to the mainstream) and helping build viewership amongst the younger demographic that ITV2 holds. Still, the numbers are low and the buzz behind the programme is at arguably it’s lowest since the premiere episode. Compare that to the fact that PROGRESS are heading to Wembley in just under two weeks…it’s quite the incredible situation.
Are you still watching WoS? Let us know in the comments