The Bachelor tied with Country Calendar in target demographic
The Bachelor's target audience can't choose between Zac Franich's love life and Country Calendar, according to Nielsen ratings.
The two shows, which screen at the same time on Sunday night, achieved equal rating numbers among viewers aged 25 to 54.
March 19's episode of Hyundai Country Calendar was watched by 131,700 people in the 25 to 54 age bracket – the same number as the viewer average for The Bachelor's first two episodes on March 19 and 20.
The 25-to-54 age bracket is traditionally a lucrative one for TV networks because it's the demographic advertisers are most interested in. A Mediaworks spokesperson said it was The Bachelor's "key" demographic.
If Country Calendar is compared to The Bachelor in all viewers aged five and over, the farming documentary show is the clear winner with 598,400 viewers.
The Bachelor's results are a drop of more than 20 per cent from last year's season opener, when 165,000 viewers in the 25-to-54 age category tuned in to watch Jordan Mauger meet the bachelorettes.
However, a MediaWorks spokesperson said the drop was just a result of changing viewer habits.
The Bachelor had seen a 50 per cent increase in online viewers from last year's premiere.
The reality show, which sees competitive kayaker Zac Franich choose a potential partner from a host of women, had also maintained its audience share from last year, the spokesperson said. The drop just meant less people were watching scheduled television.
The spokesperson said The Bachelor won its time slot in the 18-to-49 and 18-to-39 demographics.
The Bachelor was not Three's most popular reality romance show in its first week. Australian show Married at First Sight took that particular gong, with 153,400 viewers aged 25 to 54.
TVNZ moved the long-running Country Calendar series back to its traditional Sunday night slot this year, after it had been screening on Saturdays for the best part of the past two decades.