"The Emmy's" were just the other night and saw record-low viewership. Only 10.2 million viewers tuned in to the 70th show, down 11% from last year. "The Emmy's" have, for years, been a major television program, ranking in millions and millions of viewers, but are starting to see the numbers decline.
Their major target audience is people between 18-49, and the show only managed to pull a 2.4 viewership of that demographic. While this is their target demographic, they're going to have a hard time raking in large numbers of the younger end of that demographic. 47% of millennials don't even watch live tv. Most consume television content on streaming services like Netflix and Hulu or on providers' own websites.
"The Emmy's" weren't live streamed on any of the popular streaming platforms like YouTube or even Facebook. Instead, you could stream in on NBC's website, but only if you have a network provider login. As most younger people don't have a television provider, most were cut off from the awards show.
Also, as someone who is online almost 24/7 watching videos on YouTube and just generally scrolling through the internet, I haven't even seen one ad about "The Emmy's." If they are only runnings ads on live television, they're limiting their viewership even more. Chances are if I had known that "The Emmy's" were going to be on, I probably would have actually watched live tv for once.
Viewers have also given the show a lower rating than in the past. Awards shows are plentiful now and most tend to recycle the same couple jokes. It's 4 hours of watching rich people in fancy outfits sit and talk, a lot of badly delivered scripted jokes and a couple of awards.
These award shows tend to either too repetitive or praise shows and movies no one's ever heard of. "Game of Thrones" won (again) and no one was surprised. Seeing the same show win over and over again can get annoying especially when it's up against fan-favorites like "Stranger Things" and "The Crown."
That's another problem with modern awards shows. Streaming services like Netflix and Hulu are producing and releasing their own shows exclusively on their platforms, which can lead some people out of the loop when it comes to "The Emmy's." Some people are die-hard Netflix users and don't understand why shows like "The Marvelous Mrs. Masiel" (an Amazon Prime original) are winning.
For those who don't have the time (or patience) to sit through 4 hours of "The Emmy's," YouTube is great. All of the major points and winners are up on YouTube by the end of the night, so all you're missing is some pans of rich people sitting down.
"The Emmy's" weren't going up against any major premieres or any major games, so there really isn't a major reason why "The Emmy's" ratings would be so low other than people are just starting to lose interest.