It was exactly a year ago, the President of MTV Chris McCarthy unveiled his strategy to breathe new life into the struggling network with a combination of direct and improvised show. While he is confident the ambitious plan at the time, McCarthy now acknowledges that he was not sure that it will work.
As shown in the network rolled out last spring and summer, “I had a lump in your throat,” he admitted. “We will actually be able to pull it off?” The answer came in June, which was the “turning point”, as his new show began to gain momentum, and MTV has canceled its five-year ratings decline. “Then it’s a reassuring feeling—the world is changing and it gets harder, but great content still works, thank God!”
Now, as McCarthy, who also oversees VH1 and logo, head in advance—making it help customers in the framework of the Agency for advance dinner at viacom this month—he has a lot to celebrate. MTV just finished its third consecutive quarter of yoy Prime time growth among 18 – to 34-year-old for the first time in seven years. His ratings are up “triple digits” on various digital and social platforms, according to McCarthy.
And ratings on a new slate of original McCarthy show MTV has grown by almost 30 percent over the yield of last year, led by new Jersey family vacation, which debuted earlier this month. This show is the reunion of the Jersey shore gang as they celebrated the 30th anniversary of Snooki in Miami was the highest rated series premiere in the history of MTV live-plus-3 and has already been renewed for another season.
Last year, McCarthy has also launched a new line hits like the Floribama coast and Siesta key. Recently, ex on the beach, oral show hosted by Romeo, in which contestants on a Dating show to meet face-to-face with his former, was the highest rating on MTV non-Jersey shore debut new unscripted series in more than four years.
“A year ago we said we were going to revive our culture, to lift our content, and really bust absolutely beyond just one platform,” said McCarthy. “We did exactly what we wanted to do.”
In the coming year, MTV will air 1000 episodes of new Content. That includes new tricks series too dumb to die—it means “in the spirit of jackass,” said McCarthy, will debut in June—and true life crime, where each episode will take on a different true crime story that went viral.
MTV develops its programming strategy is to target viewers in their most likely platforms, whether linear or digital. “We really begin to see the separation of the ages on the platform. We focused on how we capture the most viewers in the platform, where are they?” McCarthy said. “We’re going heavier than lounging in  age 12-17 in digital/social. More shows will be created specifically for there.” These shows can be run on a linear network, and then switch to digital, he added.
That’s what happened with the Promposal, which debuted on the network last year and “good teenagers, but 18-34 year olds are not so interesting. So we moved to digital and doing new episodes,” said McCarthy.
The most notorious example of this new strategy is its approach to VDI, which MTV restarts in October. Linear ratings struggled, but McCarthy said he saw grip on digital and mobile. “When the numbers are in and one good and the other not doing so well as you can, for most of us, the knee, you either panic or worry. And that’s where we’re excited. All right, there’s really something here,” he said. “Let’s just maintain. If he got momentum, it’s worth it to [move]”.
So it was converted TRL in trio programs, airing in three separate dayparts. This morning, MTV took a Common request AM“, which will be more pure music playback, where do the traditional count, as people are waking up and ready,” said McCarthy. “That is, in fact, when people either put the news show, or put music on. So if we made the hour-playlist with a very limited [advertising], which gives you the same thing, that people will listen to the morning radio show”.
Today, LTI returns the block, but mostly on digital platforms, with short-form linear Content. McCarthy said he realized that, although it can reach Teens in digital and social after school, “we are not going to change the General habits of viewers a day, which is where she suffers the most.”
Instead, he saw opportunity, at the end of the night, where in February he launched a Common request late in the evening, Version to be played on MTV to watch what happens live on Mondays and Tuesdays. It will begin broadcast three times a week in summer and four nights this year.
Like many other network company viacom, MTV will expand the festival space to lure fans and brands. Next year the network will return their spring break event for the first time in ten years and plans yo! MTV RAPS party— yo! MTV RAPS: a 30 years experience in Brooklyn on June 1, in anticipation of the revival of the show daily digital edition.
“Where we probably all went wrong when we let go of those events in the United States,” said McCarthy, to return to the live space events. “It’s great to be back.”
McCarthy moves opens new opportunities for brands on MTV. Six years ago, “the number of customers who may not want to work in new Jersey. But now that these guys are in a different stage of their life [on the Jersey shore family vacation], we had many customers who are willing to come in, so it’s a fresh, new opportunity for us,” McCarthy said. He outlined a number of on Thursday evening, mainly in response to feedback from film studios who wanted something more shows that they can use to advertise your new releases for this weekend.
As he looks forward and is on MTV years, “we just started,” McCarthy said. “I’m one of the few who still thinks there’s plenty of room for growth in the ratings”. One way to do this will be to increase hours of new programming and expansion of nights of original programming to seven nights a week (currently MTV broadcasts as many as five nights of new programs per week).
In addition to the rotations on MTV, McCarthy is also seeing continued success on the channel VH1, who just finished his 11th consecutive quarter of yoy growth. Network has six of the top 10 new unscripted series at the cable channel which shows how race iron, next Top model of America, Martha & Snoop and love & Hip Hop franchise.
“In many ways, according to VH1 was the Road map, as we did MTV and all sensibility and speed in which the team works,” he said.