In 1980, more than 90% of the viewing audience were tuned to the big three networks at the time, CBS, NBC, and ABC. In 1993, it was around 53%. By 2005, that number fell to 32%. Somehow though, ad revenue for the broadcast networks kept growing. Total TV ad revenue was roughly in 1999 $25 billion and $30 billion in 2003 where it held steady through 2008. So far ad revenue is almost 22% down during the first three quarters of 2009. How did far less viewers fetch more ad revenue for broadcast networks? Easy, by networks changing the rules.
This series needs to be read. These are big, broad lessons here for many businesses.