More people are watching television, according to the Institute of Practitioners in Advertising, with commercial TV’s share rising from 58.1 per cent in the third quarter 1997 to 59.5 this quarter.
The steady rise in commercial viewing – for the second quarter in a row – has come from all commercial television stations except ITV. The long-suffering channel’s all-time share has continued to decline, with 30.6 per cent of viewers watching ITV in the third quarter 1998, compared with 32.3 in the same period last year.
With a third quarter peak time share of 37.1, ITV will have to achieve a 38.9 per cent share in the fourth quarter if it is to bring this year’s average up to its published target of 38 per cent.
IPA figures also show that both BBC2 and Channel 4 have increased their shares this quarter, reducing those of ITV and BBC1 in the process, while Channel 5 continues to grow. For the second consecutive quarter, BBC1’s all-time share is below 30 per cent – falling to 28.6 per cent, compared with 30.2 per cent less than a year ago.