The Pulse on Programming: September 2021 Preview

08.12.2021 Sara Brasfield3 min

Welcome back to our 2021 monthly programming spotlight! We are so glad you stopped by, and we know that as local business owners, it’s imperative for you to reach your target audience now more than ever. That is why we are continuing our monthly programming series that highlights three cable programs that not only are we excited about, but we hope you are, too. We will share when these shows will premiere, and what kind of audience is tuning into these high-value shows, to better prepare you as you start to build your media buy.

From the return of fall TV premieres to seasonal and annual TV events, your business should connect with one of our knowledgeable sellers to see how you can advertise around this popular cable TV programming. Even if inventory for these specific shows are “sold out”, we have a whole host of other shows that will reach your intended audience AND a team dedicated to discovering other opportunities with similar audiences for your business.

Here are three big programming opportunities for September:

1. Fall Harvest – Holiday Event


As one of the most-watched cable TV channels among women over 18 years of age, Hallmark Channel series and seasonal events present a powerful opportunity to target advertising to female viewers. After building success through its characteristic holiday movies produced every year, Hallmark has since expanded to original movies built around other seasonal themes.

Starting September 11, Hallmark will air six new original movies on Saturday nights until mid-October. These movies, loosely built around the theme “Fall Harvest,” are expected to meet or exceed the success of Hallmark’s 2020 slate, which featured five Fall Harvest movies that averaged 2.1 million viewers each for their initial TV release. On a fall day typically dominated by college football, this programming might be a refreshing alternative for advertisers to connect with a largely female viewership.

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2. What We Do In the Shadows – Returning Series

What We Do in the Shadows

Now entering its third season, the mockumentary-style What We Do In the Shadows, which offers a comedic glimpse inside the personal lives of four vampires in Staten Island, has earned rave reviews from critics while attracting a modest but die-hard fan base. The show returns to FX on September 2 for a 10-episode run.

With a steady total audience of around 460,000 per episode over the first two seasons, plus a 0.18 rating in the 18-49 demographic, What We Do In the Shadows can be an effective TV program to advertise around when seeking a young, niche audience that represents your target personas.

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3. MTV Video Music Awards (VMAs) – Award Show

mtv-vmas-logo-2021 (002)

MTV might be past its glory days that stretched from its 1980s origins to the Total Request Live era in the early 2000s, but the network still draws a large and predominantly young audience across its various programming. The VMAs represents one of its highest-drawing TV events of the year, with the 2020 installment 6.4 million viewers.

While its cable TV audience declined from 2019, combined digital and linear viewership actually increased by eight percent, illustrating the award show’s success in reaching an audience across multiple viewing platforms. As one of the first major awards show of a long awards show season—and with its penchant for attracting some of the world’s biggest stars to attend and perform its annual showcase—the VMAs are a prime advertising opportunity that advertisers can target not only through the show itself, but also through pre-show and post-show content. The VMAs air on September 12.

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Ready to plan new media buys that capitalize on upcoming programming opportunities? Contact Cox Media to get started today.

About the Author

Sara Brasfield

Sara is a Marketing Manager on Cox Media’s corporate team in Atlanta, with a passion for writing and delivering relevant insights for advertisers. With more than nine years of experience in B2B marketing, Sara aims to help Cox Media’s current and future clients connect with their customers find new and unique ways to grow their business. Outside of the office, Sara loves spending time running, reading, and supporting her favorite sports teams (Go Braves & Gamecocks!).

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