CBS took a gamble on Jeopardy 30 years ago. It has had to stay fresh by doubling the question values and adding video clues via The Clue Crew in 2001. And then a stroke of luck and good decision making came by way of lifting the five-game limit in 2003 and making it the first syndicated show to air in high-definition in 2006. But the accomplishments and achievements are mind boggling:
1992- Jerome Vered wins $34,000 to become the shows highest single-day winner which stood for more than 10 years.
1993- 11 foreign countries are producing their own version of Jeopardy.
2000- 30 countries.
2001- The dollar values double and Trebek shaves his mustache.
2002- Brad Rutter becomes the first Jeopardy! million-plus winner.
2003- Jeopardy! lifts its five game restriction.
2004- Ken Jennings begins his record setting run, ultimately winning 74 consecutive games and earning $2,520,700.
2006- Jeopardy introduces online testing to easily find contestants from around the world.
2008- Larissa Kelly becomes the winningest female champion in Jeopardy! history, earning $222,597.
2011- IBM’s Watson computer wins the Jeopardy!IBM challenge by beating Jennings and Rutter.
2012- Jeopardy! wins its first Peabody Award as well as its second Emmy as outstanding game/audience participation show bringing its total Emmy haul to 30.
The accomplishments are staggering, but what about the media that surrounds this show. Wheel of Fortune has always been switching places for years with Jeopardy! and Judge Judy. They are the leaders and have been for years. It’s impossible to understand the cost to produce this show since Sony has rolled the cost into their operating budget. But with the demographics on the rise with the 55+ crowd, this show has wonderful staying power. If your product is geared towards the 55+ market, these are the shows you should center your media buy around locally. It’s powerful placement when you have the right audience watching your message. The product placement alone in Jeopardy! pays for the show itself. But here is an interesting fact:
The Simpsons repeats are NOT counted in a weekly syndicated ratings because The Simpsons does not sell any national advertising in syndication.
I’m amazed the lasting power of Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy! But the I also don’t see a stop anywhere soon for both franchises. What will replace it?