JNLR 2014 Q1 National Listenership

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The National picture shows mixed fortunes. Overall radio slipped 54,000 on the twelve months, or 2%. But is only back marginally on the previous book and it’s showing no difference in the percentage reach at 83% on that book.   

In terms of individual stations, the national broadcaster dropped 18,000 (2%) to 845,000 and maintained its 24%.2FM was back 3,000 year on year after having made some gains in the latter surveys. But these gains seem to have been largely eroded as they are down 18,000 book on book pointing to more recent listener defections, perhaps after the re-shuffle.

Today FM dropped 26,000 listeners or 6% on the previous twelve months and all this charge in the national picture can only be pointing to the fairly meteoric rise of Newstalk, who, in the finest traditions of puns, can pat themselves on the back – but more on that particular issue at the bottom of the article. 

A 16% rise in listenership and adding 47,000 on to the reach of the station is some achievement. The station recently said in an interview that their aim was for 350,000 at the year end and this looks very achievable from here (8,000 more listeners would have tipped the scale and they would have moved to 10% reach!)

Another winner was Lyric FM gaining 12,000 listeners or 10%. The home local stations again had a bad few months losing 5% or 73,000 in total.

Station14_1  13_1  +/-+/- 
Any Radio83%2969 84%3023 -1%-54-2%
Any National45%1618 45%1631 0%-13-1%
Any RTE Radio34%1217 34%1221 0%-40%
Any RTE1/2FM/Lyric33%1199 34%1204 -1%-50%
RTE Radio 124%845 24%863 0%-18-2%
RTE 2FM10%376 11%379 -1%-3-1%
RTE Lyric FM4%128 3%116 1%1210%
Today FM12%442 13%468 -1%-26-6%
Newstalk9%334 8%287 1%4716%
Region/Local/M-City57%2034 58%2092 -1%-58-3%
Home Local Station42%1491 44%1564 -2%-73-5%
Other Regional/Local Station7%261 7%266 0%-5-2%


Below you can cycle through the various stations and how they have managed over time which is probably the better measure of where they are heading than the static ‘reach’ figure in a given survey. 


 Market Shares

The Market shares stayed relatively static and, again, are worth looking at from the long term perspective to see what’s really happening. This survey shows that the home locals are losing ground and have been drifting slowly south for a couple of surveys and as a single station Today FM lost the most with a 0.6% decline year on year. RTE1 managed to pick up half a point and Newstalk was on the right side of zero as well. 

Home Local Station39.00%40.30%-1.30%
Today FM7.10%7.20%-0.60%
RTE 2FM1.70%1.70%-0.40%
Regional/Local Station4.60%4.70%-0.10%
RTE Lyric FM5.60%4.50%0.00%
Any RTE Radio32.50%32.40%0.10%
RTE Radio 123.10%23.00%0.50%


Market shares

For illustrative purposes and to show what’s going on underneath the main figures it’s interesting to look at this hour by hour. RTE1 fairly dominates the day up until the late evening when there’s nobody about anyway.  It looks like Today FM need something in the lunch/early afternoon slot to try and capitalise more on good morning audiences.


Now, let’s look again at the Pat Kenny slot. Far from trying to be contentious, I’m simply plugging a few “known” figures to see where the programme might be. In the last quarter I forwarded a ‘model’ to gauge his current listenership – you can go through the figures and a better explanation here.

Here’s what’s in the theory/formula: Tom Dunne with five months at 57k. The four months to December are the figures for that last quarter (follow the link above if you haven’t seen it) that the model spat out – which was 174,000. And finally the average audience as revealed in this survey of 114,000. Put them all into their appropriate slots and you get an estimated listenership in the last quarter of 129,000 for Pat.

Even taking out the modelling from the last quarter of ’14 and leaving it as a straight turkey shoot with Tom Dunne still staying at 57,000 for the first five months of the survey five months, then Pat’s listenership is still a healthy 155,000. I think the ‘truth’ lies somewhere in the middle.


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