Report: Majority of TV Programs Fail to Resonate With Diverse Audiences

A majority of TV shows are not relevant to diverse segments of consumers and are, in fact, mostly inclusive and considerate of white, non-Hispanic viewers, according to a new study, the Cultural Insights Impact Measure from the Association of National Advertisers’ Alliance for Inclusive and Multicultural Marketing (AIMM).  The study coincides with television’s annual upfront marketplace.

The report evaluated 146 broadcast, streaming and digital shows and networks across various segments including white non-Hispanic, Hispanic (by acculturation), Black, Asian English, LGBTQ+ and people with disabilities.

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The study found that 51% of shows ranked in the bottom quartile among African-Americans and English-speaking Hispanics. Another 44% of shows ranked in the bottom quartile among Asians. In contrast, white non-Hispanics ranked those same shows in the top quartile, showcasing the fact that programming today does not have the cultural insights needed to connect with other segments, according to the study.

Streaming platforms delivered the majority of effective individual shows. Although, major endemic networks, such as Univision, OWN and BET led the way when all content was considered. The highest rated general market network was NBC.

Top shows in the study included:

  • White non-Hispanic: “When Calls the Heart” (Hallmark)
  • African-American: “Sunday Best” (BET) and “Greenleaf” (OWN)
  • Hispanic English: “House of Flowers” (Netflix)
  • Hispanic bilingual: “Mira Quien Baila” (Univision)
  • Hispanic Spanish: “Pequeños Gigantes” (Univision)
  • Asian: “Killing Eve” (Hulu)
  • People with disabilities: “Special” (Netflix)
  • MC&I: “House of Flowers” and “Blood and Water” (Netflix)
  • LGBTQ: “The Fosters” (ABC Family/Hulu)

“We’re shifting the way in which the entire industry approaches inclusivity and understands its impact on business and society,” AIMM co-founder Carlos Santiago said in a statement. “Not only is this the ethical way forward, but it makes great business sense. As network upfronts approach, this analysis provides advertisers with crucial insights needed to maximize the impact of their efforts, while offering networks the opportunity to tailor their content to reach specific viewers and create more valuable advertising space for brands.”

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