Mercurio’s Menu the Kenya speacial aired yesterday around Australia and had a total of 294 000 viewers. When I say around Australia I mean that it went to air in all the major cities at the time of 4.30pm with the exception of Brisbane which aired at 4.00pm. We have never played around Australia at the same time before. Now I dont know if it won it’s time slot or if it won its first quarter losing the 2nd two quarters to come back and win the last – perhaps perhaps not. If it did win it’s time slot – and lets face it the time slot sucks so it should have won it – then we can all be glad for it’s success.

However – The show has been airing in Sydney over the last few weeks and last week in Sydney alone it had an audience of 137 000, this is for a 5.30 pm Sunday time slot. The Sydney audience for the Kenya speacial at 4.30pm Sat was 84 000.

The ratings week of the 9th May Mercurios menu played in Sydney and Adelaide to a total audience of 193 000 – 100 000 for Sydney and 93 000 for Adelaide. The Adelaide figures for the Kenya speacial were – 29 000

For the ratings week of 2nd May Mercurios Menu had 180 000 viewers for the Sydney show at 5.30 sunday and for the April 25 ratings week Mercurio’s Menu rated 124 000 viewers in Sydney alone.

Series one of Mercurio’s Menu averaged over 700 000 viewers and series two over 800 000 viewers and on occassion we had shows that rated over 1 000 000 viewers.

So I must admit to being disappointed in these figures because it is a much better show than the figures tell us. And I think you can see from the Sydney examples having a later time lot and a consistant time slot means we can consistently get the viewers the show deserves.

I am disappointed for Lipton who put a lot of effort into promoting the show via radio spots but at the same time I am immensely proud and grateful for the support and commitment Lipton have shown and put in to the show.

Ultimately the sad truth is that the show was buried by the network who chose to put it on at a ridiculous time slot knowing full well that we would be lucky to get the ratings we did. On top of that they gave it absolutely no advanced publicity not even a one liner in the paper!

The strange thing is it could have been a winner for the network. Maybe they will give it another go who knows?? I wont be holding my breath though!

10 Responses to “Buried!!!”

  1. Paulina says:

    I agree that the program was aired in a very bad time slot, we enjoy your show and only caught the end of it as we had been out. I was very impressed with the schools for the Lipton workers children and I am sure that many other people would have watched if it was shown at a better time.

  2. Paul says:

    Okay so here is an update – I got the ratings figures above from a website that publishes them and a lot of people in the industry use as a guide. This morning I recieved ratings from the production company that have a better more accurate source

    so the new total is 401 000 viewers broken down to
    Sydney – 120 000
    Melbourne 129 000
    Brisbane 63 000
    Perth 44 000
    Adelaide – 45 000

    This puts as coming in at position 16 in the rankings of the days most whatched shows. The most watched show was the the channel 7 news with 1 185 000 and the tenth most watched show was a lifestyle programme that has been on the Tv for the last ten years or so with 528 000 viewers.

    Do I feel better about the ratings? – Yes I do. Considering the time slot the figures are pretty good but I am still frustrated by the fact that given a better time slot our ratings figure would at least double and put us in the top five and that is where the show deserve to be.

  3. Lou says:

    Congrats on the ratings and hoping for a better time slot. Your show is not in the replay/catch up videos (Plus 7) so those who cannot see it at the current time slot can catch up on video on their own time. Why is your show not in the catch up video on Channel 7’s Plus 7? Also your Lipton web site link has been very busy with viewers–but these don’t get counted in the ratings?

  4. Becky says:

    Well done Paul. I am so proud of you. The show is great. I just love watching you cook so many great meals and meet so many great people who share your passion for food. There are so many other people who enjoy food as well, I mean just look at the rattings you get. I think that here in Australia we love our food and to see someone who is a s talented as you have so much passion and pride in what they do is something to be proud of.

    On behalf of all ausies,thank you for sharing your passion for food with us and may you continue to share that passion well into the future.

    Keep smiling

  5. Kelly Haggard says:

    ok, lets stop complaining about the time it is airing, shall we. AT LEAST YOU GOT TO SEE IT!!!
    I feel better. In the states we can watch tv in any country we want EXCEPT Australia which confuses me since we have so many people over hear from Australia that make a good living here. Nicole Kidman, Russel Crowe, Hugh Jackman, Baz Lurhman, heath Ledger did, Naomi Watts, Kieth Urban…. so on snd so on. We even had an Australian series paying here last year. A western about some sisters, or was it brothers. Mcmillian sisters maybe something. They lived on a ranch, there were horses. Whatever. Point is I don’t know why we cant get Aussie tv if want to pay extra for it. Now we even have alot of our links blocked for not being in the right region. NOT FAIR. I know I watched the clips of the Lipton thing on you tube but its not the same.

    Those were impressinve numbers I think for any time slot. Especially since they didnt advertise. Yu should be very proud of yourself Paul. The audiance loves you and will tune in for you. This can be great for the future.

    All my love.
    Kelly 🙂

  6. Evelyn says:

    let’s hope those making decisions come to their senses. I just don’t get some people and how they make decisions ….

    Congrats on great numbers in tough time slots!


  7. Maria says:

    It is disappointing that Paul Mercurio required an overseas sponsour like Liptons to promote a cooking program. Maybe if he did his specials here in Australia he might have had more viewiers. Why does one have to go to Kenya to cook up?

    We have great tea plantations here in Australia that I’m sure would love the promotion that Liptons (an overseas company) is getting out of his programs – not to mention the regular adds with him promoting Liptons we see all the time these days on TV. I see the Liptons adds regularly and think ‘What about our tea plantations here! – the ones like Nerada on the Atherton Tablelands in Qld that have been affected by adverse conditions regularly, especially recently with Cylone Yasi’.

    Why isn’t he doing adds for them? I thought he was there to support our Australian companies, especially with the adverse conditions they have been going through lately being a supporting Australian as he claims? They need more people of his stature to get out there and give them their name – not overseas well developed companies like Liptons – they don’t need it like our companies here in Australia do.

    If it means negotiating at a lower cost to get his name behind them, isn’t that what it is about to support ‘Buy Australian Owned and Australian packaged and distributed’. Paul, please help our Australian companies first.

  8. Kim says:

    I love your show… Paul you’re great, not just at cooking and bringing a variety to the show, but you have a wonderful personality and the humour is great to watch.

    Thank you for making cooking very humorous!!! One day I hope to see you live when you are next on the Gold Coast.

    Kim – Gold Coast

  9. Paul says:

    Thanks for your passionate and well meant words Maria. I felt the need to respond so you have a more informed understanding of the process of making my TV show.

    Firstly it costs money to make the show and to be honest without the support of Lipton we may not have had the opportunity to shoot our fourth series. This series comprises of one episode in Kenya, 2 in New Zealand and 10 in Australia – so thanks to Lipton we were able to do 10 episodes featuring Australian stories and produce. Although Lipton is not an Australian company it does employ many Australians and therefore forms an important part of our economy not to mention the various work and support it does in the community.

    Lastly and most importantly Lipton shares my ethos of quality. I have been approached by other organizations from time to time to use their product or to lend my face to promote their product. I have on occasions declined the offer (and therefore the money and exposure) because I personally didn’t believe in the product. I only feature people and produce on the show that I believe in and that is in line with our ideals of quality. Lipton is a perfect fit in this for us – they are a high quality company with a high quality product and also a real moral care and interest in their workers and the environment.
    Just for your information we featured the Nerada Tea plantation in series one and also featured Madura Tea plantation is series two. I have not done any adds for them as they have never approached me to do so. This year we featured flood affected areas in episodes 1, 2 and 3 and we – all of us that make the show – are very proud to be able to help these areas and the farmers and growers by having them on the show. That said we cannot target an area just because it needs some TV coverage etc because we do not have the budget to do so. We will often go to an area because tourism is putting up the funding for us to go there or we have a local sponsor – this is the reality of making TV. I am lucky that we are able to make the show in the way we want without fear or favour from sponsors – they generally leave us to do our thing. But without them there would be no show.

    We are currently looking for sponsors for series 5 so fingers crossed.

    I am very much into Australian owned and grown and this is the bulk of what we do on the show. That said I would love to do some more international programs just to add colour to the series but also because there is some amazing produce and food styles all over the world that I would like to experience and share with our viewers. So far out of 52 shows we have been to Kenya once and New Zealand for four shows – so 48 shows are all Australian.

    Lastly I am open to all offers but as I have a family and a mortgage etc I need to get paid for what I do. I do what charity work I can for free which is how it should be.

    Hope that gives you a better idea of what when where and how.

  10. marion nugent says:

    I just love Pauls cooking show, it is so nice to sit down on the weekend with a glass of nice red wine and relax and watch Pauls all Australian show, we can see he loves what he is doing and so do we. It is also nice to have something like this to watch rather than sport, also to see the Australian country side. This leave Master Chef for dead this show is so stressful to watch. Please keep Pauls show on TV. Kind Regards, Marion Nugent.

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