This is a class blog run by Dr. Carolina Acosta-Alzuru and her students in the course "Telenovelas, Culture and Society" at the University of Georgia during Spring 2011

Friday, April 8, 2011

Univison trumps NBC

I want to expand on an interesting article that I read earlier today (thanks to a tweet from Dr. A). Last week, Univision jumped in front of NBC in prime time ratings. This is the second time in the past month that this has happened! It's crazy to me that a channel airing in a secondary language in the U.S. could outperform a heavy-hitter like NBC. This shows us two things: the increasing influence of the Hispanic population, and the pervasive consumption of telenovelas within this fast-growing demographic.

The article attributes Univision's killer ratings to the premiere of "Teresa" -- a remake of the telenovela that originally starred Salma Hayek (tough shoes to fill!). Not only did Univision beat NBC in primetime viewers, but it also rose above ABC in the 18-49 demographic. This trend isn't just occurring with Univision -- Telemundo has also experienced an increase in primetime ratings.

As a public relations major, this makes me wonder how PR practitioners can utilize telenovelas to reach the Hispanic population in the U.S. I interned at The Coca-Cola Company this past summer, and worked a little bit on the Coca-Cola Telenovela Club, a sweepstakes program that offered consumers the chance to meet their favorite telenovela stars. I think this is a trend that could really take off as organizations realize the influence of telenovelas within the Hispanic community.


  1. What Univision and Telemundo have both done is something that I believe will keep on occurring. The Spanish speaking population is steadily increasing in the U.S. so Spanish language networks have such a large audience. I totally agree that PR professionals should start utilizing Spanish language shows to reach consumers.

  2. There is no coincidence that the ratings would be that high. The week that Business Insider was referring to was the finale week aired in America (the last episode was aired on March 30th, and this article was published eight days after).

    Univision is becoming quite the competitor for our American networks, and Nielsen's data can support this claim! I am curious to see how our Big Four will react when one day more and more Hispanics, and possibly even non-Hispanics some of our class, will be distracted and consume more and more Univision and Telemundo prime time television.