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THE MEDIA April

drive time radio Traffic a major driver in powering drive time radio The latest BRC Radio Audience Measurement (RAM) numbers, which were for the first full year of research, continue to reflect longer listening times and a listening curve that no longer has sharp peaks that stand out during the drive time periods. But this does not mean that drive time radio is any less important. MICHAEL BRATT turns the dial. The Breakfast Xpress team is now the afternoon Xpress Drive crew WWhile peaks stil remain at drive time periods for most radio stations, the listening curve has begun to flatten out, particularly when afternoon drive time is compared to the rest of the day. Independent media consultant, Britta Reid, gives her take on this trend. “The overall weekday radio listenership curve shown by the BRC RAM data (June – Dec 2016) affirms the importance of traditional morning drive time, with listening peaking at 07h00. With the new data showing us longer and loyal listeners, there is a less pronounced difference between listenership through the rest of the day and the traditional afternoon drive time figures,” she says. This could also be attributed to the fact that the BRC RAM research includes both crossdevice and cross-location listening rather than only traditional radio. “The BRC RAM data has revealed that approximately a third of radio listening takes place in vehicles,” says Reid. “Of course, this invehicle listenership varies significantly by radio station, and is linked to factors such as living in metropolitan areas and employment. For some stations in-vehicle listenership is particularly high: 69% in the case of 947, 59% in the case of Classic FM and 5FM, 58% in the case of Jacaranda FM and 57% in the case of 702.” Reid adds, “Statistics such as these raise the question of whether we need to reconsider our notions of drive time, because we will be realistically reaching a significant proportion of these listenerships in their cars throughout the weekday, and, indeed, over weekends. Arguably, we should begin to consider broadcast time in terms of consumer mindset and requirements. What we have defined as morning drive time is more about starting the day: Waking up, getting out of bed, getting breakfast and getting toward, while afternoon derivative is about navigating the traffic, planning the evening and beginning to unwind.” To page 18 16 | themedia www.wagthedog.co.za


THE MEDIA April
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