MSNBC tune-in is up as we settle into the Biden reign

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As MSNBC’s 25th anniversary concludes, we’ve looked into the TV viewership data to understand how tune-in compares this year to last year.

  • 29% of MSNBC viewers spent 45 minutes or more on the network in Q1 ’21. This is a 41% increase from Q1 ’20.
  • Fox News had 31% of viewers tune-in for 45 minutes or more, up by 31% year-over-year.
  • CNN witnessed a similar trend, where 28% of viewers spent 45 minutes or more on the network, displaying a 49% increase compared to last year.

When we move on to Q2 ’21, Cables News viewing is down across all networks. Interestingly, MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow Show holds on to more viewers than Fox News’ Tucker Carlson’s Tonight Show. When compared with Maddow, Carlson saw a significant tune-in decline in 39 out of 50 states in Q2 ’21 (from Q2 ’20).

Although we’ve seen high profile stories around Fox News losing advertisers, daily ad time on Fox News and MSNBC are very close. CNN makes more of its airtime available for monetization than either Fox News or MSNBC.


Despite their differences in where they line up on the political spectrum, cable news networks are more likely to share audiences than not.


When you look at the audience overlap between TV shows and the three Cable News networks, it is clear that the networks share more similarities than differences in terms of audience. The top shows amongst all three Cable News networks include Ancient Aliens, Forged in Fire, Gunsmoke and Lone Star Law, amongst others.


Cable news consistently draws some of the largest audiences on linear TV and the current antagonistic environment continues to drive viewership. Let our analytics, driven by our Video AI, help you uncover more about these audiences than their demographics and apparent political leanings.

Source: LG Ad Solutions Video AI Jan 1-Mar 31, 2020 and Jan 1-Mar 31, 2021

To learn more about audience TV viewing behavior on MSNBC or other TV networks, and how to efficiently target your audiences, contact us at