In a recent report by The Hollywood Reporter, Viacom and Nielsen are both investigating an unusual occurrence at the children’s cable network that is home to the likes of Spongebob Squarepants and The Penguins of Madagascar. Both Hollywood trades state that Nickelodeon’s ratings have dropped 15 to 20 percent since mid September.
Viacom CEO Phiippe Dauman states that the two firms aim to get to the bottom of the problem, since the massive drop in ratings came without precedent or any logical explanation. The Media Rating Council has also been notified of the issue, and will be expected to provide assistance in rectifying the situation.
The timing of the ratings decline could not have come at a worse time, since we are currently in the period (right before the holiday season) where toy, media and advertising companies start to step up their marketing efforts. Nickelodeon suffering a sharp decline in ratings could put the network in a very difficult situation.
Nick’s CEO points out that the network has been the number one cable network for 66 quarters running, and over the next twelve months will only improve, as fresh shows like Kung Fu Panda: Tales of Awesomeness, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and Spongebob Squarepants will give the channel a total of 500 original episodes.