Golf Channel states that it wrapped up its best third quarter ever, across viewership, streaming and digital engagement, in a press release dated October 4.
Golf Channel claims it was fueled by Tiger Woods’ return to the top echelon of the game, particularly across NBC Sports’ slate of high-profile third quarter events, including The 147 th Open, the PGA TOUR’s FedExCup Playoffs, and the Ryder Cup.
• Golf Channel said it posted its most-watched third quarter ever (126,000, P2+) across a 24-hour period, up 9% vs. 2017 (116k).
• September was Golf Channel’s most-watched September ever (132k), up 33% vs. 2017, and becomes the third month this year to set a most-watched milestone (January and March).
• Golf Digital’s most-streamed quarter ever with 342 million minutes streamed, up 72% vs. 2017.
• Golf Digital’s record-setting pace in 2018 includes video starts already setting its most-engaged year ever with 53.4 million starts with the full fourth quarter still remaining.
“Golf’s third quarter benefitted from NBCUniversal’s expertise in promoting, producing and partnering with some of golf’s biggest events and the return of the sport’s biggest star. Golf Channel is now on record pace for its best year ever,” said Mike McCarley, president, Golf, NBC Sports. “This momentum continues as we chronicle Tiger Woods’ comeback in a unique situation where he’s competing against a generation of athletes he inspired, across an improved 2019 schedule featuring marquee events from March through August.”
YEAR-TO-DATE HIGHLIGHTS IN 2018
• With nearly 3,450 live hours programmed in 2018, Golf Channel has its most live hours ever programmed, up 107% vs. 2010, the year prior to Golf Channel becoming a part of the NBC Sports Group.
• NBC Sports’ PGA TOUR live coverage has averaged 3.7 million viewers in 2018, up 60% vs. 2017, and making it NBC’s most-watched PGA TOUR season since 2006.
• Golf Channel’s PGA TOUR live coverage has averaged 523k viewers for the 2017-2018 season, up 29% vs. the 2016-2017 season and Golf Channel’s most-watched PGA TOUR season since the wrap-around season began in fall, 2013.
THIRD QUARTER EVENTS DRIVING RECORD VIEWERSHIP
• Ryder Cup: Up vs. 2014:
o NBC Sports’ live television coverage of the Ryder Cup drew nearly 19.3 million unique viewers, up 8% vs. 2014, the last time Europe hosted the event.
o Across Golf Channel and NBC, Total Audience Delivery (TAD) was up all three days vs. 2014.
• PGA TOUR FedExCup Playoffs: Best Ever in Playoff History:
o NBC Sports’ live television coverage of all four FedExCup Playoff events was most-viewed since 2007, drawing 32.6 million unique viewers, up 44% vs. 2017.
o The last three weekends’ TAD Delivery of 3.33 million average viewers on NBC, up 55% vs. 2017, and early round coverage at all four events TAD was 863k average viewers on Golf Channel, up 40% vs. 2017.
• The 147TH Open: Largest Total Audience in Five Years:
o NBC Sports’ live television coverage drew 26 million unique viewers, most for The Open since 2013, and up 19% vs. 2017.
o Across all four days, digital streaming garnered 125 million minutes, up 24% vs. 2017, and making The 147th Open the most-streamed golf event ever for NBC Sports.
o Viewership across The R&A’s three major championships, The Open, Senior Open and Women’s British Open, was the most-watched since 2009 (TNT/ABC), and up 24%, vs. 2017