Q: Why has Oprah Winfrey been so successful as a TV talk-show host? Does it make sense for her to end her syndicated talk show in 2011 when she's still dominating the daytime ratings? Can you imagine anyone replicating the following she's been able to build?
Oprah was willing to look into the camera and pretty much bare her soul, which does not always work well on TV -- or in real life for that matter! The average audience prefers to hear things that make people feel good instantly rather than things that require introspection and action.
Oprah has a knack for delivering both: She balances deep things like "I overeat because of emotional issues -- so what's your trigger?" with feel-good things like "Everyone in the audience gets a car!" (Coincidentally, giving away a fleet of new cars to your fans does help cement loyalty.)
All kidding aside, Oprah is successful as a talk-show host because she connects with her studio audience, a connection that transfers to viewers at home, too.
It makes sense that Oprah would leave on a high note. Her ratings have been dwindling for the past decade, and her recent political endorsements may have alienated her core audience of suburban housewives.
But this is not the last we'll hear of her; word has it that she plans to start her OWN cable network ... literally, it's called OWN -- the Oprah Winfrey Network. Next up? Maybe her own planet, Planet O.
Those who aim to duplicate Oprah's success must come across as sincere and willing to talk about their own struggles; the truth is that most people are not willing to be open or transparent enough to put their own stuff out there on the street.
The comments to this entry are closed.