Pat Kenny moves to Newstalk

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The defection of Pat Kenny to Newstalk was a broadside, to say the least. The full impact of the move will only be felt perhaps in six months when the JNLR begins to pick up the possible defectors.

I will leave the would-be programme directors to speculate as to who will fill the void in the morning and how the new format will look. But, let’s ponder the numerics of the move on a few different levels.  

Firstly the current state of play shows that Pat outstrips its rivals in the morning slot. I’ve added the times of each show so that you can see that they are not all equal in either start time or duration. As they have different durations, their reach may be distorted so to that end the average audience is shown each case.  It’s the programmes average listeners per quarter hour in each programme – it levels the pitch a bit. 

StationSlotReach ‘000
Newstalk 10.00-12.0055

If RTE1 are currently on 24% reach and Pat’s 328,000 listeners contribute to that, his absence is bound to drag down that overall reach. Could that fall to 22% or 21%? Conversely Newstalk have to move to 10% or 11% one would think.

Any Radio84%3023
Any Region/Local/M-City58%2092
Any National45%1631
Home Local Station44%1564
Any RTE Radio34%1221
Any RTE1/2FM/Lyric34%1204
RTE Radio 124%863
Today FM13%468
RTE 2FM11%379
Other Regional/Local Station7%266
RTE Lyric FM3%116

But that depends on the defectors and their listening behaviour. If some of the current cohort switch at 10:00 am to Newstalk then there will also be a knock-on for subsequent programmes on RTE1. Collins may not get the same slingshot he gets currently receives and, one could argue, neither would News at one.

On a purely hypothetically and slightly frivolous note let’s fill in some numbers for the post Pat apocalypse. The rules are: there is a 40% defection from Pats current listeners. This in turn manifests itself in a 20% reduction in Ronan Collins and a 10% fall in News at One. Joe still drags in his current listeners. The numbers are not beyond the realms of possibility if Newstalk and Pat market the show well and the shows following Pat are tarted up too.

Plan B4 1

It’s an interesting scenario to be played out over the next few months


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