‘Batwoman’: CW Drama Tops New Fall Shows in Two TV Awareness Studies (EXCLUSIVE)

If awareness of a new show were directly correlated to viewership, then The CW”s “Batwoman” would be the biggest hit of the new fall TV season. According to two new studies, both exclusively obtained by Variety, “Batwoman” leads this fall’s crop of freshman broadcast series in terms of both viewers “aware” of a show, and the “demand” for a show.

Other shows earning early recognition and potential interest are the CW’s “Nancy Drew,” ABC’s “Stumptown” and “Emergence,” NBC’s “Bluff City Law” and CBS’ “Evil.”

According to Ipsos’ latest TV Dailies report, organized by lead product manager Thomas Kelley and exclusively shared with Variety, “Batwoman” leads all new series garnering a “definite interest in viewing” among thousands of people between the ages of 13 and 64 who were surveyed between Aug. 26 and Sept. 15.

Meanwhile, Variety also asked Parrot Analytics to create a study using its proprietary “Demand Expressions” metric focusing on the new fall broadcast TV shows, and it too found that “Batwoman” overindexed the most compared to the overall average for all television series.

The early awareness and interest in “Batwoman” and “Nancy Drew” are easy to explain: Both are based on well-known franchises, which give them a leg up with consumer recognition in a cluttered marketplace. Similarly, ABC’s “Mixed-ish,” which did well with Parrot Analytics’ chart, is the spinoff of hit comedy “Black-ish,” and ABC’s “Stumptown” is based on a graphic novel with a cult following.

“For ‘Batwoman,’ its demand is more than three times the market average title in the U.S. already,” said Parrot marketing vice president Samuel Stadler. “This says to us that this is a very strong contender, a release that should go very well… there are so many drama titles out there, if you have a hook against existing IP or audiences are already aware of the universe you’re about to explore, it’s much more likely that series will resonate.”

With the new TV season officially kicking off on Monday, per Nielsen, the broadcasters are playing for stability this fall — launching just 17 series among five networks over the next month, and saving some of their big swings for midseason. That’s allowed their marketing departments to be more targeted in their launch campaigns.

And that’s where fall awareness studies can help — giving execs some sense of which messages are resonating, and which shows might need a little extra oomph. The networks conduct their own internal awareness study, which they don’t share with the public or the press, but over the years it’s become apparent that there are limits to predicting a hit vs. a flop. That’s particularly true in an age where audiences consume television differently, and on their own timetable.

Ipsos TV Dailies’ “Top Box intent to view” is defined as audience members who said they would definitely watch the program. That means they were aware of the title, correctly linked it to the network it would be airing on and selected that it is an upcoming show that they would watch.

In this chart, for example, 32% of respondents, or just under 1 in 3 people age 13 to 64 who were aware of “Batwoman,” and knew it was airing on The CW, said they would definitely watch.

Here’s the list of new shows receiving 20% or higher “intent to view” marks from the Ipsos TV Dailies survey:

10/6/2019 Batwoman (The CW) 32%
9/24/2019 Emergence (ABC) 28%
9/26/2918 Evil (CBS) 26%
9/23/2019 Prodigal Son (Fox) 25%
9/25/2019 Stumptown (ABC) 24%
9/26/2019 Carol’s Second Act (CBS) 24%
10/9/2019 Nancy Drew (The CW) 22%
9/23/2019 Bluff City Law (NBC) 22%
9/29/2019 Bless the Harts (Fox) 21%
9/23/2019 Bob Hearts Abishola (CBS) 20%
10/6/2019 Kids Say the Darndest Things (ABC) 20%
source: Ipsos tv dailies; Average Top Box INTENT TO VIEW (August 26th – Sept 15th, 2019)

Meanwhile, Parrot Analytics’ “Demand Expressions” measurement combines streaming, peer-to-peer downloads, social media, comments, blogs and other sources.

Because the new shows haven’t aired yet, much of the metric currently focuses on how people are interacting online with the titles. In the case of “Batwoman” and “Mixed-ish,” for example, people are researching those shows on sites like Wikipedia.

“We track demand irrespective of whether or not a show is on air,” Stadler said. “Obviously the demand will increase once we get some trailers into market and once it airs. The value of this is, our partners work out where to deploy their marketing budgets. Because if we can give them a view on which particular show is resonating well with audiences, and how that is different relative to other shows, that allows them to make better decisions in terms of prioritization of effort.”

Stadler said he was surprised to see so many new titles already outperforming the U.S. market average of shows — a good sign, perhaps for new shows that are showing evidence of anticipation. Coincidentally or not, several TV critics have been writing recently that this is a much more highly-anticipated fall than usual for the broadcast networks, with more new series earning encouraging early marks.

Here’s how the new fall broadcast shows are indexing on Parrot Analytics’ “Demand Expressions” chart, compared to the market average:

Title (NETWORK) market average comparison
Batwoman (The CW) 3.22
Mixed-ish (ABC) 2.58
Nancy Drew (The CW) 1.94
Stumptown (ABC) 1.85
Bluff City Law (NBC) 1.64
Emergence (ABC) 1.44
The Unicorn (CBS) 1.15
All Rise (CBS) 1.03
Perfect Harmony (NBC) 1.00
Prodigal Son (Fox) 0.98
Evil (CBS) 0.93
Almost Family (Fox) 0.73
Carol’s Second Act (CBS) 0.52
Kids Say the Darndest Things (ABC) 0.39
Bob Hearts Abishola (CBS) 0.39
Bless the Harts (Fox) 0.36
Sunnyside (NBC) 0.33
source: pARROT ANALYTICS; table comparing the demand for each NEW BROADCAST shows to demand for the average US title across all platforms over the same time period (Aug 11-Sep 9, 2019).

More TV

  • Blood Oath

    MBC Studios to Launch Arabic TV Series 'Blood Oath,' Written by Britain's Tony Jordan

    MBC Studios, the Saudi-owned production unit of top Middle Eastern free-to-air satellite network MBC Group is set to launch “Blood Oath,” an Arabic crime series written by Britain’s Tony Jordan (“EastEnders,” “Life on Mars”). The announcement comes as Dubai-based MBC Studios, set up in 2018 and headed by former president of NBCUniversal International Peter Smith, is [...]

  • Tony Hall BBC Director General

    BBC Director-General Tony Hall to Step Down

    Tony Hall will step down as the Director-General this summer. “Tony Hall is an inspirational creative leader, within the UK and around the globe, and the BBC has been lucky to have him as our Director-General for the last seven years,” the Chairman of the BBC, Sir David Clementi, said in a statement. “Tony has [...]

  • Beartown - Björnstad

    HBO’s 'Beartown' Among 50 Nordic Sneak Peeks at Göteborg’s TV Drama Vision

    For the first time ever, a record number of 13 talent scouts -including U.S. reps from Wiip, CAA, Gersh- will set foot at Göteborg’s sold-out Nordic TV Drama Vision (Jan.29-30), where around 50 series in progress and in development will play to 420 industry delegates. “This is the first time ever we have such a [...]

  • BBC ITV BritBox Streaming

    BritBox U.K. Taps Will Harrison as Managing Director

    Streamer BritBox has appointed Will Harrison as managing director for the U.K. Harrison comes to the service from media investment group Ingenious Media, where he was managing director. An industry veteran, he has had previous stints at Warner Bros., HBO, Disney, A+E Television and Turner Broadcasting. His duties will include profit and loss responsibility, staff [...]

  • "La casa de papel" "Money Heist"

    U.S., Mexico Are Top Destinations for Spanish TV Dramas

    Having conquered the global SVOD market with large hits such as “La casa de papel” (“Money Heist”) and “Elite,” Spanish dramas continued gaining ground in 2019. The international presence of Spanish fiction was driven by period dramas and thrillers, as its most demanded TV genres. By territories, Mexico and the U.S. were the top destinies [...]

  • Two Rivers Media Buys Out Parent

    Two Rivers Media Buys Out Parent Kew Media Group's Stake In Business

    Two Rivers Media has bought out parent group Kew Media Group’s minority stake in the business. Formed by former STV Productions head Alan Clements in January 2019, the production outfit behind Channel 5’s recent “Susan Hill’s Ghost Story” launched with the backing of Kew, Noble Grossart Investments and Channel 4’s Indie Growth Fund. Noble Grossart [...]

  • The New York Times Building NYC

    The New York Times' Made-for-TV Endorsement Missed the Mark (Column)

    At some point during the New York Times’s special endorsement episode of its branded series “The Weekly,” the paper’s editorial board muses on the manner in which Donald Trump has changed how we envision what a potential president could look like. After the brief and energetic snippet we’re shown of a visit from candidate Andrew [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content