It has been nearly two months since Parkland survivor David Hogg called for an advertising boycott of Fox News host Laura Ingraham’s 10 PM program following Ingraham’s tweet in which she mocked the high school student for getting rejected by several colleges. While she would apologize for the offending tweet, Hogg persisted in pushing for an ad boycott, leading to several companies pulling their commercials from her show, The Ingraham Angle.
After Hogg pushed for the boycott in late March, Ingraham took a preplanned vacation the following week. Since returning to the air on April 9th, Ingraham has not only maintained her position as the most-watched cable news program at 10 PM, she’s experienced a significant surge in viewers.
During the six-week period before Hogg’s initial March 28th call on advertisers to pull their sponsorship, The Ingraham Angle averaged 2.284 million total viewers and 471,000 in the key 25-54 demographic, per Nielsen. Meanwhile, in the six weeks following her vacation week — The Ingraham Angle was manned by guest hosts that week — the show has drawn a total audience of 2.656 million and 553,000 in the demo.
This represents an uptick of 16 percent in total viewership for The Ingraham Angle over the pre-boycott period and 17 percent in the demographic.
On top of that, Ingraham has expanded her lead over MSNBC’s The Last Word in total audience while topping the demo at 10 PM. In the six weeks before the Hogg boycott, The Last Word averaged 2.252 million viewers overall and 490,000 in the demographic. Following Ingraham’s return to the air, Lawrence O’Donnell’s program has captured 2.244 million total viewers and 461,000 in the demographic.
While Ingraham has enjoyed a noticeable surge in the ratings in the wake of the advertiser boycott, it appears she is still dealing with a reduced number of sponsors. Per The Hollywood Reporter, during the first week of May, The Ingraham Angle averaged about a third of the ads it featured prior to the boycott. According to THR’s data, the show ran 12 ads per night that week, down from 35, and averaged roughly seven minutes of commercials a show, down around 50 percent.
In a statement to THR, Fox News said “advertisers are returning, and we expect things to return to normal.” It should also be noted that in the wake of the boycott, at least one major advertiser has come back to the fold — Ace Hardware.