At 3Stage Media, we track everything. Data and results matter to us, so when I began to see the promos for the Meghan and Harry interview on CBS with Oprah, I knew this would be big.
Yes, America loves a good story about the Royals and the American actress who became the Duchess of Sussex. The news that a true son of a future King decided to leave his official royal duties because of his immediate family is so tempting, it’s hard to look away!
We all know the Queen of the American TV interview is Oprah. I once worked as an intern with Oprah back in the day and she is just as advertised – a brilliant interviewer, a dynamic personality and an exceptionally good listener. Now when I knew her, she was hosting a morning television program and not quite as famous as today, but everyone who was around her knew she was on a journey to bigger things ahead.
The most telling part about all of this is where we all first saw the interview; it was on broadcast television and it was something amazing as far as viewership. More than 17 million people watched the Sunday night interview with Meghan and Harry. Oprah says some three hours of conversation had to be edited down to 90 minutes of prime-time television. The lead-in to the interview was another prime-time juggernaut, CBS’s “60 Minutes.”
Following the first airing in America, we know that with DVRs and social and digital outlets, the viewership of this one interview has risen to over 50 million viewers.
The idea that we can’t still create a Superbowl-size audience with broadcast television is simply a myth. Yes, CBS paid well for the rights to air this interview, but the first time America saw it was on broadcast network television, followed by a lot of digital and social exposure.
Let Queen Oprah be a lesson to us all – broadcast television is still the place Americans go for the big events. And just like Oprah, the initial buzz you create using television can expand to social media, but it does take a strategy.