Disney’s newly branded network, Disney XD launches with record ratings. The one-hour premiere event of Aaron Stone delivered massive triple-digit percent gains over year-ago time period levels in target kid 6-14 demographic.
Toon Disney == Disney XD
Disney XD, is a newly re-branded basic cable channel and multi-platform brand that showcases a compelling mix of live-action and animated programming for kids age 6-14, hyper-targeting boys and their quest for discovery, accomplishment, sports, adventure and humor. Disney XD branded content will span television, online, mobile and VOD platforms. The programming includes series, movies and short-form, as well as sports-themed programming developed with ESPN. In the U.S., Disney XD premiered on a 24-hour, advertiser supported network (formerly known as Toon Disney) that reaches over 72 million households via its basic cable affiliates.
The first original series on the newly branded Disney XD cable network, Aaron Stone, about a teenager enlisted to become the real life version of a legendary, crime fighting online game character, launched to high marks, surpassing all series premieres on the former Toon Disney in Kids 6-14 (303,000), driven by target demo Boys 6-14 (232,000). In a synergistic move, Aaron Stone’s premiere was also featured on Disney Channel, delivering 1.6 million Total Viewers and 892,000 Kids 6-14.
New York Times
The New York Times is reporting that Disney has gone to unprecedented lengths to research and discover exactly what makes these kids, specifically boys aged 6-14, tick as they craft the programming for Disney XD. Even hiring cultural anthropologists who have spent about 18 months researching the behaviors of this age group.
This research has lead the network to shape their programming based around gems of information like boys tend to like characters that try to grow rather than excel and win at anything they attempt.
There was a day when Disney owned the entertainment for this age group. Unfortunately, it was the fifties and Davy Crockett is no longer the hit he once was. In that span other networks have grown up around Disney and the company is committed to regain the lead in children’s entertainment for this group of children.
Constantly on the look to develop a hit of the magnitude of High School Musical has lead the Disney Co. to devote an enormous amount of research to find out what these children would like to watch.
Historically Disney has done this type of research throughout its history; be it studying anatomy for animation or cable TV viewing habits when they started the Disney Channel it has always elevated the Disney offerings available in the marketplace.
Wrapping it Up
So will the research help Disney XD become the TV station for the age group 6-14? There is always room for good programming and as Walt himself said, often, “quality will out.” Television viewers are fickle and children even more so but if anyone can reliably and consistently find what kids like, it is Disney and their new station Disney XD.