Research Director, Inc.: Exclusive May PPM Analysis For Houston, Washington, D.C., Philadelphia, Atlanta And Boston
June 8, 2016 at 2:00 PM (PT)
The merry month of the MAY survey brought with it graduation season, the HALLMARK holiday of MOTHER'S DAY and lots of rain. Of course, the NIELSEN version of that month was only mostly in line with reality as the book covered 4/21 through 5/18. Come with us – and by us we mean the Ratings Experts from RESEARCH DIRECTOR INC. and the math wizards from XTRENDS – as we explore the ratings fates of five more markets. And, we begin with …
HOUSTON-GALVESTON: The Race For Second Place
As has been the case for quite some time, iHEARTMEDIA AC KODA (SUNNY) was the leading station 6+ and led the rest of the field by almost a share (7.7-7.4). The big news was that three stations were crammed into one space at #2. RADIO ONE Urban AC KMJQ (MAJIC) remained in place despite landing its lowest share since NOVEMBER (6.7-6.3). COX RADIO Classic Rock KGLK (EAGLE) moved up a spot (6.1-6.3), while UNIVISION Regional Mexican KLTN advanced four squares with its highest share in over a year (5.4-6.3). COX RADIO Country KKBQ (93Q) slid back to #5 as it ended a two-book surge (5.8-5.5). Meanwhile, KSBJ EDUCATIONAL Christian Contemporary KSBJ took one step back to #6 (5.6-5.1).
The top three stations 25-54 were in the exact same positions as last time. KODA lost some share, but was still #1. KLTN remained at #2 with its best book since DECEMBER, while KGLK had its highest score in over a year, though continuing to languish at #3. iHEARTMEDIA Alternative KTBZ (THE BUZZ) was off slightly, but still moved up to #4, while CUMULUS Top 40/M KRBE advanced three spots to #5 with a slight increase. Four stations were close behind at #6. KSBJ remained in place with a modest decrease while KKBQ dropped from #4 with its lowest total since we were simply having a wonderful time. KMJQ was up a spot despite registering its lowest mark in over a year, and CBS RADIO Spanish Contemporary KLOL (MEGA) jumped seven spaces with its best book in over a year.
Two arch rivals found themselves face-to-face at the top of the 18-34 leaderboard. RADIO ONE Top 40/R KBXX (THE BOX) was off slightly and that allowed iHEARTMEDIA Urban KQBT (THE BEAT) to forge the tie. KKBQ was a solid #3 with its best showing since AUGUST. KODA jumped three places to #4 thanks to its best Frosty-free share since JULY. KTBZ was off slightly to remain at #5 where it was partnered with KLTN, which dropped a spot.
KLTN has been on quite the three-book tear 18-49. Two books ago, it had hit a valley and dropped back to #4. This time the station had its best performance since DECEMBER to return to the top spot for the first time since JANUARY. KODA ended its three-book run at #1 and dropped back to #2 thanks to a small decrease while KKBQ was down but stable at #3. KBXX was down for the third book in a row but managed to inch up to #4. KTBZ ended a two-book run as it slipped back to #5 where it was in league with KQBT, which moved up three places with a small increase.
WASHINGTON, DC: Big News In The Capitol
This just in … if you look at the top two stations 6+ in what is arguably the most powerful city in the world, you’ll see an amazing amount of share dedicated to information programming.
HUBBARD News WTOP was #1 for the fifth book in a row and hit double digits for the second time this year (9.6-10.3). AMERICAN UNIVERSITY N/T WAMU ended a two-book slide (7.8-8.5) to remain a solid, if distant, #2. HOWARD UNIVERSITY Urban AC WHUR had its best showing in over a year (6.3-6.5) to remain at #3 while its in-format competitor – RADIO ONE Urban AC WMMJ (MAJIC) – was flat and steady at #4 (5.5-5.5). A year ago MAJIC was at #16 with a 3.0 share. iHEARTMEDIA Top 40/M WIHT (HOT) bounced back a little from its lowest share in over a year (4.5-4.7) to move up to #5. Its cluster sister – iHEARTMEDIA AC WASH – dropped back to #6 with its lowest total in over a year (5.2-4.4). Not far behind was iHEARTMEDIA Classic Rock WBIG, which moved up to #7 with its best book since NOVEMBER (3.8-4.2).
The content that led the 25-54 demo was the same as above, but the order was slightly different. WAMU was #1 for the second month in a row but had a very large increase, which yielded its best share in over a year. WTOP ended a three-book slide to hold steady at #2 but the gap between the two widened to almost a share. WIHT was up slightly to claim the #3 position for itself. WMMJ has been on quite the three-book run. In FEBRUARY the station was #13, and after posting its biggest number in over a year, it moved up to #4 this time around. WHUR dropped two places to #5 as it ended a three-book run.
Last month, the market was aghast at the fact that WIHT did not hit double digits 18-34. Usually, that only happens when reindeer are playing games. Order was restored to the universe this time as HOT was back in double-digit land. WAMU moved up to a strong yet distant #2 with its best book in over a year. CBS RADIO Top 40/R WPGC moved up a spot to #3 despite a small decrease while RADIO ONE Urban WKYS (KISS) ended a strong two-book surge with a thud as it dropped two places to #4. Last month’s cluster-friendly duo at #5 remained untouched as both stations were flat. They were iHEARTMEDIA Country WMZQ and iHEARTMEDIA Alternative WWDC (DC-101).
It is not often that you see a non-com in a market this size rise to #1 18-49. WAMU again had its best book in over a year to move up into a share of the lead with WIHT, which was up slightly this time. WTOP ended a three-book slide and moved back to #3. The WMMJ story continues to get better. In the last four books, the station has gone from #15 to #14 to #9 and now to #4. Needless to say (but we will), the share has grown each time. WPGC was off a bit but remained in place at #5 while WKYS fell to a tie at #6 with its lowest share in over a year.
PHILADELPHIA: There’s More More There
After falling on what passes for hard times (for them), JERRY LEE RADIO AC WBEB (MORE) bounced back with a strong 6+ performance (7.0-7.8) to extend its winning streak to eleven. CBS RADIO Classic Hits WOGL had its best book since AUGUST (6.6-6.7) but had to be content with being the runner up for the sixth book in a row. GREATER MEDIA Classic Rock WMGK ended a two-book slide (5.0-6.0) to advance three places to #3. Its younger cluster brother – GREATER MEDIA Active Rock WMMR – was off slightly (5.6-5.5) and slid back to #4 where it was tied with last month’s occupant – iHEARTMEDIA Urban AC WDAS (5.2-5.5). Not far behind at #6 was iHEARTMEDIA Alternative WRFF (RADIO 104.5), which was in the five-share range for the third straight survey (5.0-5.2).
For the eighth book in a row, WBEB was #1 25-54. This time the station had its best jingle-free performance in over a year and widened its lead over #2 WMMR to over a share as rocker was off slightly. WRFF remained steady at #3 with its highest mark in exactly one year while WMGK moved up three slots to #4. The station had a “yuge” increase, which led to its best book since SEPTEMBER. WDAS was flat but fell back to #5 while iHEARTMEDIA Top 40/M WIOQ (Q102) slid to #6 despite posting its best number since JULY.
Once again, there was a tie atop the 18-34 chart. However, it was not exactly the same as last month’s. WMMR was off slightly but remained in place. Its new partner was iHEARTMEDIA Urban WUSL (POWER), which moved up from #3 with a modest increase. Last book’s co-leader – WRFF – slid to #3 as it was down for the second month in a row. WBEB recovered from last month’s ratings debacle to move up to #4 with a share that looked more normal. CBS RADIO Country WXTU had its best performance since NOVEMBER but still fell back to #5. WIOQ was off a bit and slid back to #6.
The top seven positions 18-49 remained undisturbed from last month. WBEB was #1 for the eighth book in a row while WRFF came in second again with its highest share in over a year. WMMR was off ever so slightly at #3 while WIOQ remained at #4 with its best book since DECEMBER. WUSL was off a bit at #5 while WXTU suffered the same fate at #6. WDAS was down for the third straight survey at #7.
ATLANTA: And Then There Were Three
For whatever reason, we tend to look at the ratings in each market as a 14-book trend. Maybe that’s because XTRENDS lays it out that way and we’re too lazy to go back farther. Or, maybe what happened over a year ago doesn’t really matter anymore. Either way, three stations are consistently separated from the rest of the 6+ pack and have done so for the last 14 surveys.
Coming in at #1 for the fifth time in a row was COX RADIO Talk WSB-A (8.7-9.0). Repeating at #2 was COX RADIO Urban AC WALR (KISS) (7.6-7.7) and coming in with the bronze medal again – with its lowest total in over a year – was CBS RADIO Urban WVEE (V-103) (7.3-6.5). And then, there was all the rest. SALEM Christian Contemporary WFSH (FISH) flipped five spots to #4 with its best showing since AUGUST (4.3-5.4). Just two books ago the station was #14. RADIO ONE Urban WHTA (HOT) was up three places to #5 as it recovered from last month’s down book (4.4-4.9). iHEARTMEDIA Top 40/M WWPW (POWER) dropped two places to #6 (5.0-4.7) while RADIO ONE Gospel WPZE (PRAISE) fell to #7 (4.9-4.5).
Here’s the thing. WVEE continued to be master of the 25-54 domain. Even with its lowest score in over a year, the station maintained more than a share lead over repeat #2 WALR, which was off a bit. WHTA was flat but moved up to #3 while WSB-A dropped back to #4 with its smallest share since AUGUST. WWPW remained at #5 despite being up for the second book in a row. It was joined with CUMULUS Top 40/M WWWQ (Q100), which advanced from a tie at #10 with its best showing since JANUARY. WFSH had its best book in over a year as it swam upstream to #7 (we had to get some sort of Fish cliché in here somehow).
This was the second straight 18-34 win for WHTA and the station posted a solid increase from last month. WVEE fell further off the pace at #2 as it posted its lowest score in over a year. After hitting double digits in FEBRUARY, the station has seen its shares continue to drop. WWPW remained at #3 but with its smallest share since AUGUST while WWWQ held on at #4 with a small decrease. Coming in out of the blue was CITY OF ATLANTA BOE N/T WABE, which went from #15 to #5. The station has more than doubled its share in the last two books. WALR was up to #6 with its best book in over a year while COX RADIO AC WSB-F (B98.5) dropped four places to a tie at #9 with its lowest result in over a year.
Once again WVEE had its lowest share in over a year. This time it was in 18-49 but that did not prevent the station from remaining at #1. However, the gap narrowed considerably as #2 WHTA had its highest score in over a year. WWPW was up slightly and stable at #3 while WALR was up and just behind at #4. WFSH jumped six places to #5 with its best book in over a year. WSB-A dropped to a tie at #7 with its lowest share since HOLIDAY time (what, no silly music reference?).
BOSTON: Hooked On Classics
For the fifth straight survey, GREATER MEDIA Classic Hits WROR was the leading station 6+ (8.0-7.7). It was a cluster party as GREATER MEDIA AC WMJX (MAGIC) was #2 with its best book not aided by performance-enhancing music since NOVEMBER (7.2-7.3). iHEARTMEDIA Top 40/M WXKS (KISS) remained at #3 as it rebounded from last month’s down book (6.0-6.7). Whether or not the Sawx are for real, one thing is for sure – the team is good for ratings.
Flagship station ENTERCOM Sports WEEI-F was up to #4 (5.2-5.9) while non-Flagship but still talking Sawx CBS RADIO Sports WBZ-F (THE SPORTS HUB) remained at #6 (4.8-4.9). In between was CBS RADIO News WBZ-A, which dropped two places to #5 (6.0-5.6).
Ever since it experienced the expected post-HOLIDAY drop off, WMJX has been growing 25-54. This time the station moved back to #1 with its highest share since the HOLIDAY book (when it was playing some of that funny music). WXKS was up slightly but still slipped back to #2.
WBZ-F had its highest share since JANUARY (something to do with footballs and air) but still stepped back to #3. WROR was down for the third book in a row but remained a fixture at #4. WEEI-F was up to #5 with its highest run total since NOVEMBER while GREATER MEDIA Rhythmic AC WBQT (HOT) slid back to #6 with its first down book since DECEMBER.
In three of the last four surveys, CBS RADIO Top 40/M WODS (AMP) had surpassed the double-digit threshold. Alas, that was not to be this time though the station was #1 for the fifth straight survey. WXKS was up to #2 with a small increase while WBQT dropped back to #3 with its smallest share since JANUARY. iHEARTMEDIA Top 40/R WJMN (JAM’N) ended a rather dramatic two-book slide to move up three places to #4 while WROR was off a bit as it fell back to #5. The two stations tied at #5 last month were neither tied nor at #5 this time. WMJX was up slightly but moved back to #6 while WBZ-F was flat as it fell to #7.
WXKS bounced back from last month’s down book 18-49 and recorded its fifth straight win. WMJX jumped three places to #2 with its highest output since the HOLIDAY book. The three stations sharing the coveted crown of #2 in the previous survey all went their separate ways. WBZ-F was up for the third straight survey but dropped back to #3. WODS was flat and relegated to #4 while WBQT fell to #5 with its first down book since OCTOBER.
This draws to a close another exciting episode of the ratings game as seen in ALL ACCESS.
The Ratings Experts from RESEARCH DIRECTOR INC. vow to return in the foreseeable future with our own unique take on the ratings wobbles experienced by radio stations in DETROIT, MIAMI, SEATTLE, PHOENIX and MINNEAPOLIS. Join us again, won’t you?