Netflix to Get the Nielsen Treatment?

One of the biggest indicators of how successful a cable television show is, is its ratings. For decades, the Nielsen Family ratings system has been used as a tool by advertisers to decide whether or not a show had enough eyeballs on it to warrant a pricey 30 second ad spot.

Low ratings have served as a death knell for thousands of television shows.

As Netflix’s popularity has grown, particularly with the introduction of exclusive content, the streaming giant has held its viewership numbers close to the chest. Netflix has stated in the past that everything in their catalog contributes to the success of the company. So much so, that they have decided to spend $7 billion in content next year.

Now, Nielsen is looking to put some numbers on Netflix’s viewership. Netflix streams many popular networks’ most valued television shows. In hopes to get a better understanding as to what people are watching, Nielsen has reached out to those networks about creating a partnership.

Nielsen will track performances of on-demand viewership of popular companies such as:

  • A&E Networks
  • Disney/ABC
  • Lionsgate
  • NBCUniversal
  • Warner Brothers


Senior Vice President of Product Leadership at Nielsen, Brian Fuhrer, spoke about this latest endeavor stating,

“We feel Netflix is a really important part of the ecosystem, particularly as we see some of these numbers and rankers.”

With this new partnership, Nielsen will be able to better track what content really interests viewers, giving a leg up to the NBCUniversals and ABC/Disneys of the world who are wondering which sort of content is landing with consumers.

Much to Netflix’s delight, Nielsen will not release these numbers publicly at first. We will continue to follow this story as it unfolds.


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