Little Mix's victory in 'The X Factor' final helped the show bow out with a peak audience of 15.27 million viewers last night, four million viewers down on 2010.
According to unofficial overnight figures, last night's results show had an average audience of 12.87 million viewers, a 44.3% TV audience share, between 7.30pm and 9.30pm on ITV1 and ITV1 HD. An additional 230,500 watched the show on ITV1 +1.
By comparison, the semi-final results show of the BBC’s celebrity talent series ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ managed an average audience of 10.90 million, a 40% share, between 7pm and 7.30pm on BBC One and BBC One HD.
Last year Matt Cardle’s victory in ‘The X Factor’ final was watched by a record peak audience of 19.4 million viewers, a 60% share, while the two-hour show had an average audience of 17.16 million viewers, a 54.9% share.
‘The X Factor’ is one of the biggest shows for ITV in terms of ad revenue, and the weekend and media agency sources estimated ITV was charging around £200,000 for slots in the final, which could put the weekend’s ad haul at around £18m.
Last week, ITV chief executive Adam Crozier told a Broadcasting Press Guild lunch that advertiser demand for ‘The X Factor’ was as high this year as it was in 2010, when audience figures were larger.
Brands advertising in the ad breaks included luxury cosmetics brands Estée Lauder and Dior, console Microsoft Kinect, telecoms provider Vodafone, camera brand Nikon, Barclays bank, the film ‘The Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes’ and retailer Marks & Spencer.
According to figures from ITV, ‘The X Factor' has averaged 11.0 million viewers across its 17-week run, making it the third-most-successful series in the eight series and ahead of the ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ average of 9.7 million.
On Saturday night, the audience watching ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ peaked at 12.27 million viewers, a 47.5% share, on BBC One, beating ‘The X Factor’ which peaked at 11.74 million, a 43.4% share, on ITV1 and ITV1 HD.
‘Strictly' was watched by an average audience of 10.96 million viewers, a 44.2% share, across BBC One and BBC One HD between 6.30pm and 8.15pm.
‘The X Factor’ had an average audience of 10.60 million, a 40.1% share, between 8pm and 10pm on ITV1 and ITV1 HD. An additional 327,400 viewers watched the show on ITV1 +1.
Last year’s Saturday night 'X Factor' audience peaked at a massive (and record) 15.4 million viewers, a 56% share, and the show’s audience averaged at 14.05 million, a 52.6% share, between 7pm and 9pm.
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