Over recent years the amount of TV we watch has increased; the ability to record TV or access it on-demand via streaming services means that people can watch a show they like when it is convenient to them – rather than missing out. There are plenty of people that have started watching a show because they have seen others talking about it and then binge-watched their way through a season within a day or two. The chance to switch off from the world and be transported elsewhere is something that many people relish. So, how well does UK TV do with an international audience?
UK TV Exports
The UK loves making television and if viewing figures are anything to go by, it’s something that they’re pretty good at! Betway recently looked into UK TV exports and it seems that The USA and France both enjoy UK TV shows, with a spend of over £550million between them. Different types of programmes are popular with an international audience. Long-standing programmes like Doctor Who are massively popular, and even much newer reality shows like Love Island are loved abroad.
The Most Popular UK TV Exports of All Time
There have been lots of UK shows that have worked well internationally that it can be hard to know where to start with deciding the most popular.
If you consider the shows that made the most money to be the most popular then The Great British Bake-off that has been licenced to over 25 international markets has to be up there. However, Top Gear, which generates around £50million a year from the 214 territories it is shown, has to be up there.
However, if you consider most popular to be the one that is most watched then The Office (US) is in the running, which was watched last year on Netflix for 57 billion minutes! One of the biggest reasons for this is that after the first season they adapted the jokes and humour to suit an American market – and it really took off, and there are now seasons of the American version of this popular TV show.
However, there are also game shows that have done really well when adapted for an international audience. Who Wants To Be a Millionaire? has been adapted to over 100 different versions – with the 2020 re-launch of the US version attracting an average of 5.6 million viewers.
UK culture a selling point
We know that lots of the world have a fascination with UK culture and how the English live their lives. That is why it is no surprise that programmes like Downton Abbey and Vera, which are based on historical versions of English life, are so popular.
When you start looking into popular UK exports, the truth is that so much of the TV we create does well internationally – probably we UK TV exports made £1.48billion in 2020 alone – which is a pretty impressive amount of money by anyone’s standards! Let’s see what the next 12 months of UK TV making brings!