If You Were Incharge of the History Channel

Jul 2013
60
Texas
It's all well and good to fantasize about what programming we'd all like to run (they once had a program where they went over battles and gave you multiple choice options, then showed the "right" one that the successful general took; I'd like something like that but for diplomacy—Cuban Missile Crisis, etc...), but you also have to figure out how to make it sell.

Tie-ins to current events can only take you so far to generate interest in your programming. To give you an idea of the disparity you'd need to make up for, I see that according to Reuters Battle 360 (a show I quite liked) had a huge premiere for the History Channel at 1.8 million viewers. Ice Road Truckers got 3.4 million on its premiere, Mountain Men got 3.9 million, and Pawn Stars apparently pulled seven million.

To be honest, I have no idea how I'd overcome these numbers. Mountain Men didn't have an episode under Battle 360's premiere until halfway through its second season, and that was more than a third under the second-lowest episode so far in the season so I'm not expecting the numbers to stay that low.
 

constantine

Ad Honorem
Oct 2012
8,545
Keep the most lucrative 'reality shows' in their prime time spots to maintain commercial viability. Commission a few of the lower cost documentaries about what life was like in different eras (social history), which seem to sell better than political or military history documentaries and are cheaper to produced than Ken Burns style documentaries, which require a lot of production time. Purchase licenses for several documentaries that have already been produced, from a wide variety of subjects, for daytime and weekend programming. Then spend the money on three or four new high quality documentaries every year, preceded by an extended advertising campaign as major events for the channel; hopefully drawing new viewers or drawing back old viewers who have left. Oh, and no more than one alien 'documentary' a week and it has to maintain at least a semi-objective tone (a documentary on the events around Roswell is one thing, a documentary about aliens building pyramids is quite another).
 
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Aug 2011
7,045
Texas
I'd fire everybody involved in it as of now, hire completely new staff of advertisers, writers, producers and ect... with an emphasis on historical subjects. And anyone who so much as mentions or even make a tiny little peep for a reality, ancient aliens, conspiracy shows gets canned post haste! I would be putting the H back into the Channel, D@mm!t :mad::mad::mad:
 

okamido

Forum Staff
Jun 2009
29,885
land of Califia
I'd fire everybody involved in it as of now, hire completely new staff of advertisers, writers, producers and ect... with an emphasis on historical subjects. And anyone who so much as mentions or even make a tiny little peep for a reality, ancient aliens, conspiracy shows gets canned post haste! I would be putting the H back into the Channel, D@mm!t :mad::mad::mad:
And then the channel would be bankrupt within a year. :p
 
Jul 2013
60
Texas
And then the channel would be bankrupt within a year. :p
I'm not sure if it would go bankrupt (as I haven't looked at their finances), but they'd certainly lose immense amounts of revenue (i.e. more than 50% of their ad money). As I already said, the ratings just aren't there for history programming. Not compared to what they're running right now, anyway.
 
Aug 2011
7,045
Texas
I'm not sure if it would go bankrupt (as I haven't looked at their finances), but they'd certainly lose immense amounts of revenue (i.e. more than 50% of their ad money). As I already said, the ratings just aren't there for history programming. Not compared to what they're running right now, anyway.
Ratings!!! Ratings!!! Sometimes my faith in Americans plunges to the depths of the abyss.