Two months on from the big ITV schedule change there are two worrying signs for the BBC.
The first – in scheduling terms – is The One Show. It doesn’t appear to have benefited from the lack of direct competition from Emmerdale. On a typical night, it is getting 200-300,000 fewer viewers than the second half of the extended ITV News.
This is despite the strong inheritance from the regional news. It isn’t immediately clear where a significant proportion of the regional news viewers head to at 7pm.
Are they switching to ITV? Other channels? Doing the washing up? Heading out for a walk?
I cannot help but think they are being lost unnecessarily. The One Show at is best can produce hidden gems.
The BBC would be well-advised to do some detailed research as The One Show could certainly rate better. It’s certainly true that it would be no bad thing to look closely at the programme itself.
Matt Baker was always a hard act to follow. But it’s perhaps time to have a main male lead presenter again. A succession of different presenters can damage familiarity – an important element on this kind of programme.
But at its best The One Show still includes lots of good popular journalism and can make difficult subjects accessible.
There are two obvious questions for marketing and presentation.
Does the programme need stronger, consistent marketing? Perhaps consistent trails in the afternoon or at 5.59pm pointing to that day’s content.
Secondly, does the 7pm junction need tightened? Breakfast hands over to the (very successful) Morning Live at 9.15am.
Could the regional programmes simply hand straight over to The One Show? If you don’t like the thought of this in principal, could the junction be kept to a simple 10 second ident?
It’s maybe worth considering the scheduling of Party Political Broadcasts (aka the kiss of death) at 6.55pm too but where else might they go?
Meanwhile there is a much more worrying issue for the BBC which will be much harder to solve. This is the woes of EastEnders – even after catch up viewing, it is still well behind Emmerdale and Coronation Street.
Sorting out EastEnders will not be easy.
But can better marketing and promotion give a quick shot in the arm to The One Show?
PICTURED: The One Show opening titles. COPYRIGHT: BBC.