James Corden’s CBS ‘Late Late Show’ First 30 Days: By the Numbers

“We’ve always had pieces in late night that you’d want to share with your friends, this just made it more possible,” CBS Late Night VP Nick Bernstein says of YouTube

Last Updated: April 29, 2015 @ 11:04 AM

James Corden is singing and rapping himself to relevancy in late night TV, but do the initial numbers back-up the obvious talent?

TheWrap looked at the British comedian’s social media statistics, ratings and other quantitative data to help readers analyze the new “Late Late Show’s” first 30 days as a success, failure, or too early to call. We also spoke with CBS VP of Late Night Nick Bernstein, who summed up the transitional show’s first four weeks simply by saying, “we’re in a good place.”

Here’s the initial breakdown: Per Nielsen’s social media measurements, Corden’s late-night program is the most-social talk show in its time period, meaning he tops NBC’s “Late Night With Seth Meyers” for the 12:30 a.m. fan engagement crown.

Season-to-date, Corden is the third most social series in late night, trailing Jimmy Fallon and Kimmel. Essentially, that means he tops lead-in David Letterman on social media — no real shock there, despite the less plum timeslot.

On Twitter, Corden personally has more than five million followers (“The Late Late Show” has far fewer itself) currently — nearly twice that of direct competitor Meyers. On Facebook, the song-and-dance man has more than two million Likes. He’s not particularly active on Instagram, and while Corden is on Snapchat, there is no way to count followers on the medium.

Anyone who is paying attention to late night’s viral video Jimmy Fallon effect knows that the landscape is changing — and Bernstein’s newest property is trying to find its place on the small screen — and on second screens.

“Late night, in general, is a place that if you can’t experiment and try things … than I don’t know if there’s anywhere on television that you can,” Bernstein told TheWrap. “And I think that you treat social media the same way.”

“If you can find that way in, and it feels like it’s working — you keep going back there,” he said of specific mediums.

One is the highly important YouTube, where Corden’s “Late Late Show” has more than 206,000 subscribers as of Monday — up triple-digit percentage points since the show’s premiere. That’s just a few thousand south of Meyers’ 210,000 subscribers, with far less time in production. Corden had north of 51.3 million views on the platform at the time of this writing; Meyers boasts about 20 million more.

“We’ve always had pieces in late night that you’d want to share with your friends, this just made it more possible,” the day part veteran told TheWrap of the buzzy video trend that came about while Bernstein was still with NBC.

And then there’s the show’s website itself. “The Late Late Show” section on CBS.com is up by over 300 percent for both unique visitors and total visits versus the same period last year. Across CBS and its CBS Audience Network, “The Late Late Show’s” total video streams are up by more than quadruple digit percentage points versus the same period last year. Fifty-eight percent of Corden’s total streams came from mobile devices.

Here’s Corden’s most viral individual videos from his first 30 days:
1. “Every Tom Hanks Movie in 7 Minutes“: 12.5 million views
2. Mariah Carey Carpool Karaoke: 5.4 million views
3. Katie Couric Pranks James Corden: 5 million views
4. David Beckham and James Corden’s New Underwear Line: 4.9 million views
5. Jennifer Hudson Carpool Karaoke: 2.6 million views
6. Brooklyn Beckham’s Dad Drives a Hard Bargain: 2.2 million views
7. James Corden’s Journey to “The Late Late Show”: 1.5 million views

On the ratings front, the new “Late Late Show” has averaged 1.37 million total viewers in its first four weeks. Corden has tied “Late Night” over the past four weeks in both the 18-49 and 25-54 demographics, with a 0.4 and 0.5, respectively. Meyers has the edge in overall eyeballs with 1.47 million over the measured time period.

Against the comparable four weeks in 2014, when the show was still hosted by predecessor Craig Ferguson, Corden is down seven percent overall (from 1.48 million), flat in both aforementioned demos.

Corden’s version has seen a higher retention rate versus Ferguson’s version from David Letterman’s “Late Show” in both demos, but flat in total viewers. That said, Letterman’s ratings are down year-over-year.

“We’re in a great discovery period right now,” Bernstein said of his show’s early ratings. Time will tell if the sample viewing pays off in the end.