Research Director, Inc. Presents Exclusive August PPM Analysis For New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco And Dallas
September 3, 2013
ALL ACCESS presents AUGUST PPM market highlights, compiled by the ratings experts at RESEARCH DIRECTOR, INC. and powered by XTRENDS, radio's #1 PPM and diary analysis tool. All numbers reflect subscriber only data.
Once again, the big wheel keeps on turning. No sooner do we digest the results of one but the ARBITRON waiter serves us up another course. This time we focus on AUGUST which, ironically enough, only included about half of its namesake month. This particular analysis focuses on JULY 18th through AUGUST 14th – a time when listening patterns can be thrown completely out of whack due to those pesky lifestyle changes like vacations.
As always, the observations contained within are based on the analysis performed by The Ratings Experts at RESEARCH DIRECTOR, INC. If you have any questions or comments on what you read here, feel free to contact us in a variety of ways:
Now, on with the show …
NEW YORK: Alert The Media!
Wait, we are the media. Remember where you were this day. It was the moment Hell froze over, pigs were in a holding pattern over JFK and CCM+E AC WLTW (LITE) was NOT the #1 station in the BIG APPLE. While there have been a couple of near misses in the last year, this was the first time that LITE actually found itself looking at someone else’s license plates. Your new market leader is none other than CBS RADIO Classic Hits WCBS-F, which took the giant leap forward from #2 (6.3-6.2). WLTW is on a five-book slide and posted its lowest number in over a year (6.6-6.1). Meanwhile, YMF MEDIA Urban AC WBLS remained the model of consistency (6.0-5.9) to claim the #3 position for the fourth straight survey. However, the station is hearing footsteps from CCM+E Top 40/M WHTZ (Z100) (5.5-5.8), which is enjoying its third straight run at the #4 position. SBS Tropical WSKQ (MEGA) experienced its first down book since MARCH (5.1-4.8), but held steady at #5. So, what the heck was going on in the N.Y. sports world during this survey? The A-ROD controversy? Whatever the reason, CBS RADIO Sports WFAN-F (THE FAN) had its best book since JANUARY (2.9-3.7) to jump from a tie at #14 to #10. This was the seventh full month in format for CUMULUS Country WNSH (NASH FM) and for the second month in a row, the station was down (2.0-1.9) to fall from #18 to the fringes of our radar at #20.
As we saw in the 6+ arena, WLTW also surrendered its #1 25-54 crown. However, this time the new market leader is not from across the street, but from down the hall. WHTZ leapfrogged from #3 to #1. It actually swapped positions with its cluster buddy as LITE fell to #3 with its lowest number in over a year – a full share, ahem, lighter than last AUGUST. Stuck in the middle of this sibling rivalry was WSKQ. Even though the station was down slightly, it still had its second straight strong book and stayed put at #2. WBLS ended a small two-book slide to move up from #5 to #4, trading places with WCBS-F. THE FAN also had a solid book here as it moved from #13 to #9 while WNSH slipped from #17 into a tie at #18.
Another demo, another change at the top, 18-34. However, this one is not quite as dramatic as the previous two. WHTZ has been there before – 10 times in the last 14 books – as it moved up from #2. WSKQ dropped back a slot to #2 but is still over two shares stronger than it was a year ago. EMMIS Top 40/R WQHT (HOT) remained firmly entrenched as the #3 station while WLTW held on at #4 despite posting its lowest number since NOVEMBER. A couple of other stations changed positions, as well. UNIVISION Spanish Contemporary WXNY went from #6 to #5 while CCM+E Urban WWPR (POWER) did exactly the opposite. WNSH bounced back from its lowest in-demo book to date to move from a tie at #18 into a tie at #15.
Might as well make it a four-for-four book. WHTZ returned to #1 18-49 by posting its best number since APRIL. WSKQ’s stay at #1 was brief but it is still in a very strong position at #2. WLTW dipped a bit but held firm at #3 while cluster brother CCM+E Top 40/M WKTU was flat and happy at #4. WBLS broke out of a tie at #6 to reclaim the #5 position, which bumped WQHT from that spot to #6. WNSH moved from #17 into a tie at #17 – the fifth straight month the station has owned or shared that spot.
LOS ANGELES: Another Big Performance
This marks the fifth consecutive month that CCM+E Hot AC KBIG (MY FM) has topped the market charts. One could certainly call this a trend. This time, the station posted its biggest number in over a year (5.4-5.9) to open up a full half-share lead over cluster-mate CCM+E Top 40/M KIIS (KISS FM), which remained at #2 (5.3-5.4). These two stations continue to separate themselves from the rest of the market. CBS RADIO Top 40/M KAMP (AMP) was #3 for the third straight book (4.6-4.5) while CCM+E AC KOST held down #4 once again (4.5-4.4). The order and make-up of the top 5 remained completely unchanged from last month as EMMIS Top 40/R KPWR (POWER) stayed true to form at #5 (4.4-4.0).
The trend continued 25-54 as KBIG captured the flag for the eighth straight survey. Basically, 2013 has belonged to KBIG and this time the station posted its biggest number of the year. KIIS assumed its customary position as the #2 station – something it has also done for the entire year. Surging out of the pack was SBS Regional Mexican KLAX (LA RAZA), which jumped from a tie at #6 into a tie at #3. As recently as MARCH the station was sitting in a tie at #12. CBS RADIO Alternative KROQ dipped slightly but held on to a share of the #3 position. Last month, there were two stations sitting in a tie at #4. This month, these same two stations are still tied but are now sitting in a tie at #5. Those stations would be KAMP and UNIVISION Regional Mexican KSCA – which lost its PIOLIN PAR LA MAÑANA morning show just after the start of the book.
Last survey, KPWR ended KIIS’ eight-month run atop the 18-34 charts. Well, a new run has begun as the stations swapped positions again. However, the margin of difference is as small as it mathematically can be so this battle is far from over. KBIG is threatening to add this demo to its list of conquests as the station had a very strong book to not only move from #4 to #3, but to put itself in a position to challenge the leaders. KAMP was flat and fell a spot to #4 while its cluster buddy KROQ had its lowest number in over a year yet held on at #5.
The top 5 18-49 was basically unchanged – with one minor exception. Last survey, KBIG and KIIS were the perfect examples of cluster synergy as they graciously shared the #1 spot. This time no one was singing Kumbaya as KBIG took over undisputed control of the demo, relegating KISS to #2. For the entirety of 2013, KPWR has been #3 here and that trend continued. CBS RADIO controlled the remainder of the top 5 as KAMP and KROQ held on at #4 and #5, respectively.
CHICAGO: ‘GCI Shoots And Scores
The only time in the last 14 surveys when CCM+E Urban AC WVAZ (V103) was not #1 was when SANTA was doing the reindeer thing. Once again, the station led the market by a comfortable margin, despite posting its lowest number since MARCH (7.4-6.7). HUBBARD Hot AC WTMX (MIX) was down for the third straight survey (5.3-5.0) but managed to remain at #2 for the fifth consecutive month. CBS RADIO News WBBM-A was completely flat (4.9-4.9) in both share and ranking as it remained at #3. Breaking out of the pack, with easily its best book in over a year, was CCM+E Urban WGCI, which jumped from a tie at #6 to #4 (4.1-4.7). A year ago at this precise moment, the station was sitting at #12 with a 3.6 share. In its last full book under its old talent lineup, TRIBUNE N/T WGN-A remained at #5 (4.6-4.6). In its second full survey under its new format alignment, CCM+E Hot AC WLIT (MY FM) moved up slightly from a tie at #15 into a tie at #14 (2.6-2.9). One casualty from the top 5 was CBS RADIO Country WUSN (US99.5), which followed its best book of 2013 with its second best book of 2013 (4.9-4.5) to slide from a tie at #3 to #6.
So far, 2013 has been the year of THE MIX in 25-54 and, for the eighth straight month, WTMX is #1. Though the station still has a substantial lead over everyone else, it was down for the third straight survey and posted its lowest number since MARCH. For the tenth book in a row, WVAZ was #2 while WGCI continued its hot streak by posting its best number in over a year to jump from #5 to a much closer #3. CCM+E Top 40/M WKSC (KISS) ended a two-book surge to slip from #3 into a tie at #4 with WUSN which, as we noted previously, followed its best book of the year with its second best one. WLIT showed a bit of movement at it climbed from #16 to #14.
While WGCI made some bold moves last month, it really had nowhere to go but down 18-34. Alas, ‘twas not to be. Not only did the station remain #1 for the third month in a row, it posted an absolute monster number – easily its best in over a year. It now has an almost three-share lead over the market’s new #2 station – CCM+E Regional Mexican WNUA (EL PATRON), which is on a two-book tear that has taken it from #10 to where it stands today. WTMX posted its lowest number since JANUARY to remain at #3 though it is now tied with WKSC, which slipped from #2. CBS RADIO Top 40/M WBBM-F (B96) was off slightly from last survey and slipped from #4 to #5 while CRAWFORD Urban WPWX (POWER) also dipped enough to drop from #5 to #6. WLIT dropped from #16 to #17.
For the first time in over a year, WGCI was #1 18-49. Exactly one year ago it was #4 but the kicker is, the station has added two full shares of audience since then. WTMX’s nice seven-month run at the top of the leaderboard came to an end as the station scored its lowest number since the SANTA season to slip to #2 for the first time all year. Last month WVAZ and WKSC were tied at #3. This month both stations experienced the exact same ratings drop and remained tied at #3. WBBM-F’s departure from the top 5 was only temporary as it moved up from #6. On paper, WUSN’s drop from #5 to #8 may seem huge but because of market compression in this range, its actual loss was less dramatic.
SAN FRANCISCO: News And Sports Together On The Ones
This has always been a great market for not only information-based programming but AM signals. This month, there are two stations sharing the top spot, and they are both based on the spoken word and emanate from a platform that many consider, shall we say, no longer cool. For the second straight survey, CBS RADIO News KCBS-A laid claim to #1 (5.2-5.2). This time it shared that position with CUMULUS Sports KNBR-A which, despite the struggles of the home town nine, inched up from #2 (5.1-5.2). We are unaware of any other market where this has happened. ENTERCOM AC KOIT bounced back from its lowest book of the year (4.5-4.9) to move up from #5 to #3. This likely caused a bit of grumbling in the halls at CBS RADIO Top 40/M KMVQ (NOW) as the station slipped from #3 to #4 (4.9-4.6). CCM+E Top 40/R KMEL scored its lowest number since JANUARY (4.6-4.1) to slide a spot to #5.
In each of the last four books a different station laid claim to the #1 spot 25-54. That trend came to a screeching halt as KMVQ kept its hold on the crown for the second straight month. KOIT is one of that #1 quartet, and this time it jumped from a tie at #4 to #2. KNBR-A was #1 a mere three months ago and after some down time, it just jumped from #7 to #3. KQED INC N/T KQED, which was #1 as recently as APRIL, posted its lowest number in over a year to drop from #3 into a tie at #4 with CCM+E Top 40/R KYLD (WILD), which saw its three-book surge come to an end. KMEL had its lowest share since JANUARY to plummet from #2 to a tie at #7 with CUMULUS Classic Rock KSAN (THE BONE). Keep an eye on KSAN. Over the last three books, the station has moved from #13 to #11 to its current position.
As is always the case, KMEL was #1 18-34. However, the usual scenario has KMEL with a multiple-share lead over perennial #2 KYLD. Now, after KMEL scored its lowest book since DECEMBER and KYLD its highest since OCTOBER – the gap has narrowed to its closest point all year. KMVQ was off slightly to remain a distant #3 while KNBR-A was up slightly to remain an even more distant #4. The market is so compressed beyond this point that minimal changes in shares can yield large movements in ranking. Cases in point: CBS RADIO Alternative KITS (LIVE 105) was up the least amount you can be, yet rose from #8 to #5. Meanwhile, KSAN was down the minimum and fell from a tie at #5 to #6. CCM+E Hot AC KIOI (STAR) was off a bit more than the minimum to also fall from a tie at #5 into a tie at #8.
The order and make-up of the top 5 18-49 was completely unchanged this survey. KMEL was still #1 but after posting its lowest number of the year, it fell back to the pack and saw its lead over #2 KMVQ shrink to its lowest point over any competitor this year. KYLD is in the second, pardon us, wild-card position at #3 while KOIT is kind of out of the play-off picture at #4. KIOI rounded out the top 5.
DALLAS-FT. WORTH: Kidd’s Last Stand
It is still difficult to grasp that it has now been a month since the untimely and tragic passing of KIDD KRADDICK. The echoes of his presence in both our industry and to the people – especially the children – of DALLAS will continue to reverberate for a very long time. This particular survey represents his last time on the radio and also reflects the immediate aftermath and response. As one would expect, CCM+E Top 40/M KHKS (KISS) was again #1 after posting its best number since APRIL (6.8-8.0). The race continued to be for second place. Last month was the first time all year that SALEM Christian Contemporary KLTY was not #2. This month, the station ended a three-book slide (4.3-5.1) to climb from #5 back to more familiar turf. CUMULUS Country KPLX (THE WOLF) was off slightly (4.8-4.7) yet managed to elevate its ranking one spot to #3. CCM+E Hot AC KDMX (NOW) could not duplicate its best book of the year from last month (4.9-4.4) and slipped a slot to #4. Cluster brother CCM+E Classic Rock KZPS (LONE STAR) ended a two-book slide (4.1-4.3) to move from a tie at #6 to #5. UNIVISION Regional Mexican KLNO (LA QUE BUENA) scored its lowest number since FEBRUARY (5.1-4.1) to plunge from #2 to #7.
What a difference a month makes. In JULY, KHKS and KLNO shared the top spot 25-54. In AUGUST, that dynamic took a dramatic turn. KISS had its best book in over a year to claim sole possession of first place while KLNO had its lowest share since NOVEMBER to fall into a tie at #2 – a full three shares behind the leader. KLTY ended a three-book slide to move from #5 into a share of second place. KDMX ended a two-book mini-surge by posting its lowest number since FEBRUARY to slip from #3 to #4. There were three stations in a wrasslin’ match at #5. KPLX slipped from #4, KZPS inched up from #6 and CCM+E Alternative KDGE (THE EDGE) jumped into the fray from #8.
Last month, KHKS had its lowest 18-34 share of the year. Yes, the station was #1, but not in its usually uber-dominant fashion. Numbers returned to normal this time as KISS is a healthy three shares ahead of SERVICE Urban KKDA (K104), which moved up a slot to #2. In mornings, KHKS had its best number since APRIL. Meanwhile, KLTY had its best book in over a year to leap from a tie at #10 all the way to #3. KLNO had its lowest number since FEBRUARY to drop from #2 to #4. KPLX remained at #5 though it is now tied with CUMULUS Country KSCS, which had its best book since FEBRUARY to move up from #8. KDGE saw its rather substantial two-book surge grind to a halt as it slipped from #4 to #7.
KHKS bounced back from an unusually low JULY 18-49 and is back to crushing the competition. Its lead over #2 KLNO went from the slimmest possible margin to over three shares. KISS reversed a three-book morning slide and remained a dominant #1. KLTY had recovered from an early summer slump as it jumped from a tie at #9 to #3 – exactly where it was a year ago. KDMX had its lowest book of the year to slip from #3 to #4 while KKDA was up slightly to remain at #5. KDGE ended its two-book surge and slipped from #4 into a tie at #6 with KPLX.
Coming up, our next round of markets – HOUSTON-GALVESTON, WASHINGTON, D.C., PHILADELPHIA, ATLANTA and BOSTON. But first, a word from our sponsors …