Since the OWN cable network debuted in 2011, its popularity has skyrocketed among African-American women, particularly in the last two years.
At a time when many cable networks have been experiencing declines in their viewership, OWN’s average prime-time viewership has grown roughly 30%, climbing to 537,000 in the past two years, as many network have suffered significant declines. According to The Wall Street Journal, the network’s new lineup has resonated strongly with women and black audiences.
Since signing on writer-producer Tyler Perry in 2012, who has four shows on the network now, and adding recent shows like Ava DuVernay’s Queen Sugar and the megachurch drama Greenleaf, OWN has been able to grow its viewership and visibility.
OWN is now the highest-rated cable network among African-American women, and it is also in the top 20 for all women, according to Discovery.
It remains to be seen whether or not OWN can keep up its momentum while at the same time battling the problems of recent economic pressures as well as the rise of Internet-based television.