The Block NZ final smashes viewership records, part three to follow – UPDATED

Alice and Caleb Pearson were crowned the winners of the second edition of The Block NZ, and the husband-and-wife team took home $261,000 for their efforts over the last 10 weeks. And they weren’t the only winners, with TV3 recording its highest primetime share in 25-54 since records began in 2005.

During the finale, viewership peaked at 1,185,300 viewers, and by the end of the two-hour slot it was determined that an average of 683,500 Kiwis (all 5+) enjoyed the spectacle, up 39 percent from season one’s 491,600. In addition, the second season’s 5+ cume reach was 2,948,200 (72 percent), up nearly six percent from last year’s figure of 2,697,600 (66 percent).

Mark Caulton, the director of programming at MediaWorks, said, “I’m really proud that The Block NZ is again TV3’s number one series and New Zealand’s favourite show… Roll on series three.”

According to MediaWorks, an average of 452,200 people tuned in per episode, a 14 percent increase from last year’s numbers. The show has been particularly popular among the network’s target demographic of 25-54, which comprised 56 percent (252,900) of the viewership per episode. In this demographic there has been viewership growth, but, at seven percent, it has been only half that of the national average.

The slower growth rate in this demographic could come down to The Block NZ’s substantial viewership share, leaving limited space for further expansion. During the grand final TV3 recorded a 44 percent share of viewers aged 25 to 54 and the 25-54 audience across the two hours was 346,300, a 30 percent increase on the 267,900 in 2012.

It was popular family viewing as well, with a 47 percent share of the Main Household Shoppers with Children demographic.

It’s clear that Kiwis love The Block NZ—and that the ‘seamless’ integration of sponsors into the show obviously isn’t a huge turn-off (as The Civilian summed up quite accurately in its entertaining style, it’s “an elaborate renovation reality show that cleverly acted as an extended advertisement” for Bunnings). It was also talked about a lot and during the auctioning of Alice and Caleb’s property, the hashtag #theblocknz sat in second place on worldwide Twitter trends. Facebook fans on the The Block NZ page doubled from 30,000 at the end of August to 60,000 on 1 November, and Pete and Andy have also felt the love by accumulating over 54,000 fans.   

In addition to another local series, MediaWorks aims to continue feeding this desire for renovation porn by adding The Block Sky High and The Block All Stars to next year’s programming roster.          

At the end of the two-hour special screened last night, the winning couple was awarded the $181,00 profit made from the auction as well as an additional $80,00 prizewinners’ fee. And in a new addition to this year’s proceedings—and another way to increase the fan engagement—Southern boys Pete and Andy took home the People’s Choice Award and a gleaming new Mazda. 

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