Thursday, November 28, 2013

Post 2523 - Radio Ratings Musings

The radio ratings are out! The radio ratings are out!

Once again, I was only able to get the overall numbers and not the breakdowns according to demographics. I will do my best to interpret them.

The document I downloaded this evening contains the percentage (the "share") of the audience who tune into each station. They compare the numbers for this book to ones over the last 2 years.

First of all, what is a share? A share, as defined in the BBM book, is "the estimated total hours tuned to that station expressed as a percentage of total  hours tuned to all radio". I interpret that to mean that if a station gets a 15% share that it gets 15% of all the hours the respondents had their radios tuned in to any local station. If a respondent spends 100 hours listening to a variety of radio stations in a given market during a given ratings period, then for about 15% of those hours he was listening to the station being discussed. The respondents' total number of hours will be averaged and that is the overall share for a given station. Keep in mind that respondents can be of any age or demographic group. I discussed the problems with overall numbers in yesterday's post.

CBC 1, 90.5FM in Halifax, is number one again, with about 15% of the audience. These numbers are down over last year, and are trending downward. I wonder if the cutbacks are finally starting to take their toll? And I also wonder why people continue to rag on the CBC so much when they do so well in the ratings? Why won't private radio PD's acknowledge that the CBC does things right and change their programming accordingly?

Radio 96.5, formerly KOOL FM, took a major hit. Their share was 9.6% in the Spring. Since the format change at the end of August, their share tumbled down to 4.5%. KOOL FM had been in a downward spiral anyway, but this fall was nearly precipitous.

Here are the rest of the ratings. The first number is the share as of Spring 2013.  The second is for Fall 2013.

CBH FM(3.5)(2.5)

CJNI is News 95.7.  They're down a smidge, but remember that this ratings period included Jordi Morgan's show and was before all the other cutbacks. I think the Spring 2014 ratings for this station will be very interesting.

CFLT is Lite 92.9. They are up a bit. But, once again, right after the ratings period they fired Jamie Paterson so I wonder what will happen in the Spring.

CKHY FM is Live 105. They are down a bit, but I wonder if that could be chalked up to so many other stations playing music one can find on Live 105. I still listen to them a lot, and many of my chums do as well.  Hello, Jeff. Hello, Floyd.

CHFX is FX 101.9. They are down a little bit as well, but are still a strong number two. Which is funny, because whenever I think of country music I compare it to number two.

CHNSFM is The Wave. Used to be Hal FM, which I don't miss in the least; it was an abomination. The format change to classic hits is paying off for them so far. They more than quadrupled their share. This shows that there is a strong appetite for classic hits music, and I wonder how the folks at Newcap are feeling about their format change away from classic hits to whatever you call Radio 965. Getting Bill Hart and JC Douglas at The Wave can only bring them good. I hope Robert Pace of MBS acknowledges this great success by giving both guys a nice bonus. Like a Rudy's coffee card or something. 

CI00 and CFRQ (Q104) are about equal in the ratings. CIOO, though, is up quite a bit in this book, so I wonder if that can spell a trend. And in what dayparts are they up? They did switch drive home hosts with The Bounce.

CKHZ is Energy 103, an Evanov station. Their mortal enemy is The Bounce, CJCH FM. CKHZ's share is down a bit, while The Bounce is up a titch.

I am just a guy, a boy. I do not have access to the breakdown of the numbers such as demo's and the ratings for individual day parts. I'm unlikely to. Which is fine. But there appears to be some good news here for some stations, middling news for others, and very disappointing news for one or two others (especially the former KOOL FM). 

Program Directors and General Managers will all find things to like in the ratings book, as well as things not to like but to spin in a way that is more palatable to them. Radio 965 is not going away after just one book. If the trend continues with the Spring 2014 book, then you will see some changes. Actually, there is a change in that Morgan Sheppard has been hired to work there, replacing... well, I don't know whom she is replacing. Their website is minimalist in a way that would make the Spartans sit down and take notes. I just know she is gonna be working for them in some capacity.

The Wave so far seems to have knocked it out of the park. In listening to them, I see that they are playing some other classic hits that KOOL FM did not, which makes me happy because I was sick of most of the songs on KOOL. I have to wonder where The Wave will go next.

If I find out anything else about these ratings, or come up with any more thoughts, I will add them. It's not like there are a lot of people writing about Halifax radio, is it? Me and Wayne Harrett and that other guy.

Valley time this weekend. I will keep writing, though. I know you love me.

See you tomorrow.


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