Research Director, Inc. Presents Exclusive September PPM Analysis For Houston, Washington DC, Philadelphia, Atlanta And Boston
October 1, 2013
ALL ACCESS presents SEPTEMBER 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.
Welcome back to round two of the SEPTEMBER survey. As a reminder, this book covered 8/15-9/11 so it really was more about AUGUST. Also, week three of this survey was neatly bisected by the three-day LABOR DAY weekend and that will always have an effect on listening patterns.
The following analysis comes courtesy of The Ratings Experts at RESEARCH DIRECTOR, INC. If you wish to correct, cajole, or otherwise opine about our conclusions or observations, please feel free to reach out to us. Through the magic of the World Wide Web we can be found …
Now, watch as we pull a rabbit out of our hat …
HOUSTON-GALVESTON: The Haves Have It
This is an interesting market in that the top 5 stations overall separate themselves from the rest of the pack. As we sit today, cracking the top 5 will be a somewhat daunting task for any station that is on the outside looking in. As per usual, RADIO ONE Top 40/R KBXX (THE BOX) resided at the top spot. Even though the station was down for the third straight survey (8.0-7.8), it still had a comfortable lead over the #2 station. That would happen to be its cluster mate – RADIO ONE Urban AC KMJQ (MAJIC), which was up for the second straight month (6.5-6.6). This is the closest the stations have been together since FEBRUARY. CCM+E AC KODA (SUNNY) ended a four-book slide (5.9-6.5) to move up a spot to #3 while COX RADIO Country KKBQ (93Q) was flat (5.7-5.7) yet also moved up one space to #4. UNIVISION Regional Mexican KLTN (ESTEREO LATINO) had its lowest number in well over a year (6.1-4.9) to drop two spots to #5. To give you an idea of the separation between the “haves” and “have nots,” when it comes to the top 5, the closest challenger is CCM+E Alternative KTBZ (THE BUZZ). It just ended a three-book slide to move from a tie at #7 to #6 but still trails the pack (4.0-4.1).
The two-month hiatus from the #1 position 25-54 for KBXX came to an end as the station scored its best number since JUNE. Meanwhile, KODA had its best book since being fueled by reindeer to jump three places to #2. KMJQ is riding a two-book surge and just moved up from #4 to #3 while KLTN ended a two-book run at #1 and tumbled three spots to #4 on the strength of its lowest book in over a year. KKBQ was off slightly and fell from #3 to #5. To give you an idea of the gap a station has to surmount to gain entry to the top 5 in this demo, KTBZ – which was #6 for the fourth straight survey – is almost a share and a half out of the top 5.
In 18-34 there is only really one “have” and that is KBXX. The station consistently leads the market by six or seven shares and this time was no different. However, there is a new #2 in town as KKBQ moved up a spot despite a down book. The station was helped in large measure by KLTN, which had its lowest number since APRIL and dropped back a spot to #3. KTBZ had a strong book to remain at #4. CBS RADIO Top 40/M KKHH (HOT) followed its best book of the year with something a bit less forceful and had to be content with remaining at #5.
The players in the top 5 18-49 remained the same with one small alteration in their appearance. Of course, KBXX was #1 by a wide margin – topping double digits for the fifth straight month. KKBQ followed its best book of the year with its second best and was able to step ahead one spot to #2. KLTN had its lowest performance in over a year but only dropped back one spot to #3. KTBZ was up slightly to remain at #4 while KODA bounced back from its lowest book since FEBRUARY to remain at #5.
WASHINGTON, DC: There Is No Debate
Considering that our Nation’s Capital is, depending on your point of view, the center of the known talking-point universe, it should come as no surprise that issues and conversation continue to dominate the ratings. For the third month in a row – and the eleventh time in the last 14 books – AMERICAN UNIVERSITY N/T WAMU was the #1 station inside and outside the Beltway. Though the station did nominate its lowest number in over a year (7.6-7.3), it still held a comfortable lead in the polls over HUBBARD News WTOP. WTOP also reported its lowest share in over a year (7.0-6.6) – and has stuck with its #2 position for seven of the last nine surveys. CCM+E Top 40/M WIHT (HOT) was lodged at #3 for the eighth straight survey (6.3-6.3). HOWARD UNIVERSITY Urban AC WHUR had its best book since SANTA was cruising Constitution Avenue (5.8-5.9) but had to settle for holding on at #4. Who says things never change in WASHINGTON? Two stations actually flip-flopped their positions! CCM+E AC WASH ended a two-book slide (5.1-5.6) to move up a spot to #5, which forced RADIO ONE Urban AC WMMJ (MAJIC) to move down to its fallback position at #6 (5.7-5.5).
This marks the third straight month that WIHT has been the chart topper 25-54 and by adding to its share, the station extended its lead over #2 WHUR – which was flat. WASH was up sufficiently to move up a spot to #4 while WTOP posted its lowest number in over a year to slide out of a tie at #2 to #4. RADIO ONE Urban WKYS (KISS) was flat but that did not prevent the station from moving up to the top 5 from #6. On the other hand, WMMJ had its lowest number since JANUARY to fall from #5 into a tie at #8.
The WIHT 18-34 juggernaut continued its run as the station posted yet another strong double-digit showing and leads #2 WKYS by over two shares. CBS RADIO Top 40/R WPGC had its best book since APRIL to remain in its customary #3 position. CCM+E Alternative WWDC (DC101) was up for the second straight survey to continue its hold on #4 while cluster buddy CCM+E Country WMZQ was up a bit to stay hunkered down at #5.
The top 5 18-49 remained almost exactly as it was. As it has been for all of 2013, WIHT was #1 and WKYS was #2. WASH had its best book since the stockings were hung by the chimney with care to remain at #3. WWDC and WHUR swapped spots with the former posting its best number since MAY to move up to #4 while the latter was flat.
PHILADELPHIA: Another “A” For The “B”
After SANTA left town the last time, WEAZ-FM RADIO AC WBEB (B101) slipped out of the top spot and spent a few months slumming at #2. What looked to be a trend evaporated quickly and the station can now claim the #1 mantle for the sixth straight survey (7.2-7.0). Last survey, there was a three-way logjam at the #2 position. That tie ended as all three stations experienced down books, some more than others. CCM+E Urban AC WDAS had the lowest decrease (5.9-5.8) so it kept its hold on the position. We’ll check in with the other two stations in a moment. GREATER MEDIA Active Rock WMMR was up for the second month in a row (5.5-5.7) to move out of a tie at #5 to become the #3 station in town. The other former resident of the #5 position was its cluster brother GREATER MEDIA Classic Rock WMGK. While it was down slightly (5.5-5.4), it did move up a spot to land in a tie with CBS RADIO Classic Hits WOGL, which dropped out of that #2 tie (5.9-5.4) with its lowest number since JANUARY. The third station sharing the #2 position last month – CBS RADIO News KYW-A – posted its lowest number in over a year (5.9-5.3) to drop to #6.
It is now six months in a row that WMMR has been the #1 station 25-54 – a very solid run. And, for the last couple of books, it has maintained a comfortable lead over WBEB – which just posted the exact same number for the third straight survey. CCM+E Alternative WRFF (RADIO 104.5) ended a small two-book slide to remain at #3. WDAS had its best number since MAY to move out of a tie at #5 and into the #4 position. WMGK had its best book since OCTOBER to remain in a tie at #5 though its new partner is BEASLEY Country WXTU, which had its best book since NOVEMBER to climb up from #7.
Though the station is on a three-book slide, WRFF notched its third consecutive #1 18-34 book and continued to maintain a healthy lead over the rest of the field. CCM+E Urban WUSL (POWER) was sitting at #2 by itself; however, the station has been on a rather dramatic three-book slide that started right after it reached #1 in JUNE. WMMR dropped out of a tie at #2 to land at #3. WDAS landed its best book since JANUARY to rocket up the chart from a tie at #9 into a tie at #4 with WXTU, which was flat. WBEB was off for the second straight month to slip a spot to #6.
Much like we saw in 25-54, WMMR extended its 18-49 winning streak to six books with another solid performance. WBEB moved up a slot to #2 while WRFF posted its lowest number since JANUARY to drop one place to #3. Last month, three stations were knotted at #4 but that tie has been broken. WXTU bounced back from its lowest number since MARCH to claim the position for itself while WDAS had its best book since that same month but slipped to #5. WUSL was down for the third straight month and that slide has seen it fall from #2 to its current residence at #6.
ATLANTA: Another New #1
Breaking news, the “V” is not #1 in ATLANTA. Way back in JUNE the world was shocked to see CBS RADIO Urban AC WVEE (V-103) dropped from the top spot. The station righted itself for two books but it was deposed once again as COX RADIO Talk WSB-A landed its best book since NOVEMBER’s election mania (7.0-8.0) to move up from #2. It wasn’t like WVEE just laid there and let this happen as the station had its best book since APRIL (7.3-7.9) yet still dropped to #2. RADIO ONE Urban AC WAMJ (MAJIC) was off slightly (6.8-6.7) yet remained at #3. It shared that spot last month with COX RADIO Urban AC WALR (KISS) but KISS posted its lowest number since FEBRUARY (6.8-6.3) to drop into a tie at #4. It shared that spot with cluster buddy COX RADIO AC WSB-F (B98.5), which moved up from #5 despite its third straight down book (6.7-6.3).
As we move into the 25-54 arena, we find that WVEE continued its uninterrupted run at #1, posting its best book since APRIL and extending its lead over COX RADIO Classic Hits WSRV (THE RIVER), which is on a three-book slide, to almost three shares. WSB-F was up enough to move up a spot to #3, swapping places with WAMJ, which was down a little. CUMULUS Top 40/M WWWQ (Q100) actually had its lowest number since APRIL yet managed to move up one place to #5. WALR is on a four-book slide and landed its lowest number in over a year to drop from #5 to #7.
Big changes were visited upon the 18-34 demo. For the first time since at least JUNE 2011, WVEE was not #1. That distinction went to RADIO ONE Urban WHTA (HOT), which not only went to #1, but opened a share-plus lead over #2 WVEE. WWWQ trailed the pack at #3 while CCM+E Regional Mexican WBZY (EL PATRON) had its best book since MARCH to move up from #7 to #4. WSB-F scored its biggest number since FEBRUARY to also climb three spots – from #8 to #5. This knocked a couple of stations out of the top 5. CCM+E Alternative WRDA (RADIO 105.7) took a tumble, dropping from #5 to #9. LINCOLN Hot AC WSTR (STAR) also took a hit as it landed its lowest number since FEBRUARY to drop from #4 to #11.
Order was maintained in the 18-49 universe as WVEE bounced back from its lowest book of the year to remain a dominant #1. It has a three-plus share lead over the new #2 – WHTA – which recovered from its lowest book of the year to rocket up the chart from #7. WSB-F was up enough to move out of a tie at #4 to #3. WSRV posted its lowest number since MAY to drop from #2 into a tie at #4 with WWWQ, which slipped from #3. WAMJ has been yo-yo-ing its numbers over the last several months and was walking the dog this time as it slid from a tie at #4 to #6.
BOSTON: Kiss This
For the last two months the radio world has been all agog about the changing of the guard at the top of the leaderboard. Long-time market champion CCM+E Top 40/M WXKS (KISS 108) was forced to play second fiddle to GREATER MEDIA Country WKLB not once, but twice in a row. Well, that trend came to an abrupt – if temporary – halt as the stations reversed positions. KISS moved up despite posting its lowest number in over a year (7.6-7.2) while WKLB slipped back with its smallest total since JUNE (7.8-7.1). CBS RADIO Classic Rock WZLX bounced back nicely from a down book (6.1-6.6) to hang in at #3 for the fifth straight survey. GREATER MEDIA Classic Hits WROR was up for the second straight book (5.5-5.6) and advanced two spaces into a tie at #4 with cluster sister GREATER MEDIA AC WMJX (MAGIC), which was down slightly for the second month in a row (5.7-5.6). CBS RADIO News WBZ-A had its lowest number since sleigh bells rang (5.7-5.4) to drop out of a tie at #4 to #6.
The top three stations 25-54 remained unchanged from the previous month. WXKS had its lowest number since JANUARY but remained at #1 and widened its margin over #2 WKLB, which also had its lowest number since JANUARY. WZLX was up a bit to stand fast at #3. WMJX was up slightly to remain at #4 but is now joined by CBS RADIO Sports WBZ-F (THE SPORTS HUB), which moved up from #7, and had its best book since the BRUINS were battling for the cup. Last month, two stations were tied at #5, and they chose to follow the exact same course to arrive together at #6. CBS RADIO Hot AC WBMX (MIX) scored its lowest number since reindeer was on the menu while GREATER MEDIA Alternative WBOS (RADIO 92.9) reached a depth not seen since JANUARY.
The shocker 18-34 was not that WXKS wasn’t the dominant station but the fact that it dipped into single digits for the first time in over a year. Its lead over #2 CCM+E Top 40/R WJMN (JAM’N) shrank to just over a share – a very unusual occurrence. The newest kid on the block – GREATER MEDIA Rhythmic AC WBQT (HOT) – was down but managed to climb a spot to #3 – its highest ranking since the format flip. WKLB posted its lowest number since MARCH to slip one square to #4. WBOS had its lowest showing since NOVEMBER yet remained at #5, though it is now tied with the hard-chargin’ WBZ-F, which moved up from #6.
Once again, WXKS was #1 18-49 but as has been seen previously, the station scored its lowest number in over a year. It still has a two-share lead over #2 WKLB, which roped its smallest steer since MARCH. Last month, four – count ‘em – four, stations were tied at #4. That did not happen this time. WBZ-F benefitted from the revived Sawx Nation to move up to #3 while cluster brother WZLX remained at #4 with a solid showing. WJMN was up slightly but still fell to #5 while WBQT was flat to drop into a tie at #6. By securing its lowest number since JANUARY, WBOS fell from #3 into a tie at #8.
So ends round two of our saga. Stay tuned to many of these same fine stations for our third – and final – installment as we explore the comings and goings of DETROIT, MIAMI-FT. LAUDERDALE-HOLLYWOOD, SEATTLE, PHOENIX, and MINNEAPOLIS-ST.PAUL.
Until then, this is your announcer speaking …