Have the Changes at the Judging Table Backfired? ‘American Idol’ Is Losing Value

October 23, 2012  |  

We’re sure this isn’t what the producers of American Idol hoped when they added Nicki Minaj to the judging table… for $12 million. Mariah Carey was also meant to be a big draw, with her reported $18 million salary. Instead of commercial time for the show becoming more valuable, ad prices have actually gone down.

Commercial time on the number one televised talent show was the most expensive around at one point. Not so anymore. According to Forbes, “After five years of owning the most expensive real estate in prime time, Fox‘s American Idol has fallen to No. 2 on Advertising Age’s annual list of shows with the highest ad rates.”

The average cost of a 30-second spot on Idol  has fallen by a full third, to $340,825. Idol lost to NBC’s “Sunday Night Football,” which is now the most expensive place to buy commercial time. Last year “both ‘SNF’ and Idol were charging about $500,000 for an average 30-second spot, this year the NBC show is commanding $545,142,” reports Forbes.

So it appears the cat fights between Mariah Carey and Minaj didn’t boost the value of the show. And to pay those salaries, they can use all the ad dollars they can get. Let’s see if the talent can do the trick.

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