New Launches Drive Gospel Music Channel Past 22 Million Subs
GMC Adds 14 Million Cable HHs This Year, Making it Cable's Fastest Growing Network of 2007
Contact: Jim Weiss, Gospel Music Channel, 770-692-4579, firstname.lastname@example.org
ATLANTA, Dec. 10 /Christian Newswire/ -- Recent distribution agreements and launches across multiple MSOs have driven Gospel Music Channel (GMC) past the 22 million household mark, the network announced today. GMC has added more than 14 million cable subscribers in 2007, exceeding its projections and making the nation's only 24/7 Gospel/Christian music television channel the fastest growing (non-launch) network of the year.
GMC's latest distribution gains include launches by: Bresnan Communications (MSO-wide throughout Colorado, Montana and Wyoming); Charter Communications (Central and West Divisions); Comcast Digital Cable (New Jersey Region); Cox Communications (Pensacola Region, FL.); and Time Warner Cable (Northeast Ohio Division, Cleveland/Akron; Austin/Waco/Killeen, TX.)
"We were very ambitious in our projections for the channel's cable growth this year. To exceed those goals by nearly double reflects both the strong desire of the cable operators to provide their customers with positive, family-friendly and inspiring music television programming, as well as a tremendous effort by our talented team," said Charles Humbard, founder and president, GMC. "We are grateful to our partners in the cable industry for their strong support this year and look forward to new heights in 2008."
Previously announced 2007 launches include systems run by Comcast Digital Cable (Philadelphia, Miami, Boston, San Francisco, Minneapolis, Denver, Houston, Pittsburgh, Sacramento Knoxville, Houston, Paducah); Cox Communications (Hampton Roads and Roanoke, Va., Omaha, Oklahoma City and Tulsa); Charter Communications (Charter Midwest and Fort Worth, Texas); and Knology (Huntsville, Ala., Augusta & Columbus, Ga., and Charleston, S.C.); Time Warner Cable (New York City, Los Angeles, Dallas, Kansas City, San Diego, Northeast and Southwest Ohio, Charlotte, Raleigh and other markets); and Bright House Networks (Bakersfield, Calif. and Tampa.) GMC also launched on Sky Angel satellite network in 2007. With its 2007 distribution agreements, GMC is now seen in each of the top ten markets (DMAs), 23 of the top 25 and 46 of the top 50.
GMC has affiliation agreements with all four of cable's largest MSOs: Comcast Cable, Time Warner Cable, Cox Communications and Charter Communications. The recent annual Beta Research Cable Operator Study revealed that Gospel Music Channel ranks as the #1 network to add among cable providers (200K+ and 100K+ subscribers). The channel also ranked #1 in "audience attentiveness to advertising," and #1 in "feeling comfortable viewing with family" in a recent major advertising industry research report. Another new research study found that GMC viewers are 43 percent more likely to be highly influential in the community and have a 57 percent larger social circle than the viewers of other cable networks.
A key catalyst for the network's growth has been its ongoing commitment to producing original programming. Gospel Music Channel has become the largest producer of original Gospel/Christian music television in the world, producing more than 200 hours of concerts, series, specials and video, producing all new content in High Definition. Most recently, GMC premiered a new weekly series, The Kitchen Sink, an hour-long music performance, news, entertainment and variety program; the only national show of its kind featuring Christian and gospel music. The show is a combination of live in-studio performances by top artists, lively interviews, world premiere videos, the latest entertainment news and previews, undiscovered new talent, inspiring feature stories and more.
The channel's growth also can be attributed in part to an aggressive grassroots marketing effort. This outreach is led by GMC's Ministry Partnerships team, expanded this fall to help broaden and strengthen the channel's local community relationships, as well as its database and viewership. Operating within GMC's marketing department, the Ministry Partnerships unit already has made significant strides in engaging with churches and affinity groups. Thus far, more than 2,700 churches in New York, Los Angeles, Houston, Tampa, Seattle and St. Louis have been engaged on multiple levels. In 2008, the initiative will expand to the top 25 markets, in addition to new-launch markets outside the top 25.
On the ad sales front, GMC welcomed Wal-Mart and P&G as new advertisers to the channel in 2007, with Wal-Mart signing on as the first sponsor of The Kitchen Sink, with program integration. GMC's extensive lineup of special holiday programming includes as sponsors Lionsgate, Unilever, Hallmark, Walgreens and Salvation Army, among others.
Gospel Music Channel is the first and only 24-hour, advertiser-supported, all music entertainment network devoted to the uplifting, inspiring, and diverse music that is gospel.