The big television ratings review 2021. Part 2: RTL, SAT1, PRO7.

MEDIA REPUBLIK > TV & VIDEO > THE TV REVIEW 2021 – PART 2 – RTL, PROSIEBEN, SAT1 & CO.

Three posts, one review: the 2021 year in German television.

The top ten 2021.

Source: AGF.DE – Download: PNGDATA

RTL

More than the general ranking above that sees RTL as the first among the private stations, it is worth considering its performance among the target audience between 14 and 49 years of age, the most relevant macro-group for commercial broadcasters.

With 10,1%, RTL is ahead of all private competitors.

In this 14-19 years ranking, the followers are:

  • ProSieben = 8.7%
  • Das Erste = 8.1%
  • ZDF = 7.6%
  • Sat.1 = 7.0%
  • Vox = 6.7%
  • Die Dritten = 5.8% *
  • RTLzwei = 4.5%
  • Kabel eins = 4.2%
  • Nitro = 2.1%
  • ZDFinfo = 2.0%

However, RTL’s annual results are still declining year after year:

SOURCE: AGF DOWNLOAD: PNG

A steady decline.

Programming strategy, the competition of Netflix & Co, lack of big titles ad big entertainment names: there are several reasons for the falling RTL ratings.

Looking at the overall audience (i.e. all people above 3 years age), the decline is also visible: with 7.2%, RTL had its lowest ratings since 1988.

SOURCE: AGF DOWNLOAD: PNG, DATA

What about the new investment into news and journalistic talks?

“RTL direkt”, on air since 16 August 2021 at around 22:15, is a strange thing for the typical RTL audience, but interesting: a mix of news of the day, talk and infotainment, hosted by two former big names of ARD: Jan Hofer and Pinar Atalay. It grew week after week, but it is still a “Fremdkörper” (a foreign object) for the channel. It did not bring new audience, it did not retained the existing one.

rtl direkt
rtl direkt

SAT.1

Sat.1 benennt sich um – Das steckt hinter der TV-Aktion - CHIP

2021 was not a good year for Sat.1: the annual average ratings fell at 5.2% among the general audience and 7% among the 14-49 group, the lowest figure for Sat.1 since the 1980s.

SOURCE: AGF DOWNLOAD: PNG

Yes, 2021 in the summer was dominated by the Euro Championship and the Olympics, but a strategy that relies mainly on reality shows, often overshadowed by scandals, is not helping the channel.

Some successful programming pillars deserve more recognition: the morning infotainment magazine show, the “Frühstücksfernsehen”, finished its most successful year since 2016 with an average market share of 17.8 per cent among 14- to 49-year-olds.

SOURCE: AGF DOWNLOAD: PNG

Worth mentioning is also the “Sat.1 investigativ”, an investigative journalism format that showed Sat.1 can do serious programming for a younger audience.

schermata 2022 01 07 alle 16.12.13

PROSIEBEN

Despite a list of very successful formats – “The Masked Singer“, the outstanding comeback of the old format “TV Total“, “Joko & Klaas gegen ProSieben“, “Jenke” and “Schlag den Star” – ProSieben did not manage to catch up RTL, at least not yet, in the commercial segment 14-49 years. The last time ProSieben touched the 10% mark was March 2019.

SOURCE: AGF DOWNLOAD: PNG

The effort to make ProSieben more relevant produced actually high-quality programming, especially the ones covering the Federal elections, but they contributed more to the channel image than to its ratings.

SOURCE: AGF DOWNLOAD: PNG

As a result, in December 2021, ProSieben went under the 9% mark among the 14 to 49-year-olds: first time since the nineties. 2021 is the second year in a row with a significant decline in the commercial audience.

DECEMBER 2021

CHANNEL % AMONG THE 14-49
RTL9,7%
ProSieben8,6%
ARD Das Erste7,8%
SAT.17,3%
ZDF7,0%
VOX*6,8%
ARD-Dritte*6,6%
VOX originär6,3%
Kabel Eins4,2%
AGF TV DATEN
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