Demo growth lifts cabler to another year of ratings gains

While its ratings growth in teen viewers has been well documented, ABC Family will also celebrate 2010 for the gains it has made with adult women.

ABC Family had two of the year’s three most-watched scripted cable series among women 18-34, including the leader, “The Secret Life of the American Teenager,” which averaged more than 1 million viewers in the demo.

“Pretty Little Liars” was close behind with 960,000 viewers in women 18-34. ABC Family also hit new heights in women 18-49, and in December it was No. 1 on cable in both demos.

The boost in adult femme viewers helped lift ABC Family to its seventh consecutive year of overall ratings increases, including a fourth quarter that was record setting for the cabler. The network finishes 2010 as a top 10 cabler in both 18-49 and total viewers.

“Our focus in 2011 will be to continue to build upon these successes and keep the emphasis on the great storytelling that resonates so strongly with our millennial viewers,” ABC Family prexy Michael Riley said.

In the past seven years, ABC Family’s adults 18-34 ratings have more than doubled, increasing at a faster rate than its overall aud. For the year, ABC Family averaged 1.44 million overall viewers in primetime, with its annual “25 Days of Christmas” stunt programming averaging 2.8 million.

To be sure, youth viewership remains a strength of ABC Family. Among so-called millennial females 12-34, no scripted cable series had more viewers than “American Teenager” or “Liars.”

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