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Shark Week Attracts a Younger, Diverse Audience. Now, Discovery is Aggressively Trying to Keep Them

Author: Michael Schneider
Publication: Variety

Not even the COVID-19 pandemic could stop Shark Week. The annual Discovery Channel franchise, now in its 32nd edition, remains a juggernaut for the company — which this year is using Shark Week to launch five new series while giving the network (and cable in general) a needed boost.

“I’ve worked at Discovery as a broad company for a long time, and Shark Week was always the biggest week of the year across the entire company,” says Nancy Daniels, the chief brand officer of Discovery & Factual. “Everybody loves Shark Week. Everybody loves talking about Shark Week.”

Shark Week has been called “Discovery’s Super Bowl,” and that’s not just hyperbole. “Shark Week brings in a different audience, a more expansive audience, than we get most other weeks of the year,” Daniels says. “We get a lot more A/B county people watching. We get just a lot more eyeballs than we’re used to getting.”

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