Rajar Q4 2010: Magic retains London crown and Kiss leapfrogs Heart
Bauer Media's Magic 105.4 had the highest reach and total hours of any station in London, according to the latest Rajar audience figures.
Neil Fox: breakfast show presenter on London's Magic 105.4
It also had the second-highest reach of any commercial station in the capital at breakfast,
Magic 105.4 achieved an average weekly reach of 2.05 million, up 12.6% year on year, but down 4.6% quarter on quarter, while its breakfast show, presented by Neil Fox, had a weekly reach of 853,000 – up 9.1% year on year and 8.4% quarter on quarter.
The Magic network had an average weekly reach of 3.94 million in the three months to 19 December, up 17.4% year on year, but down 1% period on period. It notched up 26.11 million listening hours a week – up 6.6% year on year, but down 10.1% on the quarter.
Dee Ford, group managing director, radio at Bauer Media, said: "Special congratulations must go to Magic 105.4, which has again been crowned the number-one commercial station in London, gaining more share over Capital and Heart."
Kiss 100 FM, Bauer's younger-focused station, also did well during the quarter, leapfrogging Heart to become the third-most listened-to commercial station at breakfast, with 777,000 listeners, up 16.3% year on year and 16% quarter on quarter.
Across the whole schedule, Kiss 100 FM had a weekly reach of 1.82 million, up 13.5% year on year and 2.8% quarter on quarter. This gave it the third-highest reach of the London commercial stations, also ahead of Heart.
The Kiss network had an average weekly reach of 3.95 million, up 17.4% year on year, but down 2.3% quarter on quarter, and an average of 21.19 listening hours a week, which was up 14.8% year on year, but down 5.3% quarter on quarter.
Dominic Woolfe, investment director at Publicis agency Starcom, said: "Magic and Kiss were the only two major London stations to increase reach and hours, and Magic has beaten Radio 2 in London for the second quarter in a row.
"Magic has a formula that it's used for the last few years and they're winning the London battle. Kiss uses very little above-the-line marketing, but really gets its listeners. Both stations are very focused in programming terms and it pays off."
The Johnny and Lisa breakfast show on 95.8 Capital FM retained its early morning crown in the last three months of 2010, despite dropping reach both period on period and year on year.
The average weekly reach of the 95.8 Capital FM breakfast show was 1.08 million in the three months to 19 December, down 11.9% year on year and 5.7% quarter on quarter.
Global Radio's 95.8 Capital FM also retained its position as the second-biggest commercial station in London by reach at 1.96 million – up 7.3% year on year, but down 7.7% period on period.
Global Radio rolled out the Capital network nationally on 4 January, replacing the Galaxy brand and incorporating four further stations. The first figures for the network will be available next quarter.
Heart London's breakfast show, presented by Jamie and Harriet, dropped from second to fourth place during the quarter, to an average weekly reach of 728,000, down 7.8% year on year and 12.7% quarter on quarter.
The Heart London station was pushed into fourth place in the capital. Heart London had a weekly reach of 1.77 million in the three months to 19 December, down 6.1% year on year and 14.1% quarter on quarter.
A radio specialist from a media agency, who asked not to be named, suggested Global Radio sometimes pushed Capital at the expense of Heart in London, adding: "From an agency perspective, all the talk is focused on Capital."
In June last year, Global Radio announced plans to consolidate 32 Heart stations and two further stations into a 15-station Heart network covering the same geographical areas, and the changes were completed by the first week of September.
The figures for Q4 show the Heart network had dropped total hours and reach since the changes, despite above-the-line marketing. The Heart network had a weekly reach of 7.74 million, down 3% from the third quarter, but up 6.7% year on year.
The Heart network reached total hours of 57.80 million every week in the three months to 19 December, down 6.2% compared with the three months to 19 September, and down 1.6% year on year.
Richard Park, director of broadcasting at Global Radio, attributed Heart and Capital's period-on-period falls to seasonality. Park said: "Capital and Heart listeners are up and about in November and December, shopping and going to parties.
"The TV campaigns helped Heart's awareness levels and any period-on-period changes can be attributed to seasonality. We're pretty pleased with what we've achieved. These figures are just a final school report for 2010 – we're already onto the 2011 agenda."
This article was first published on mediaweek.co.uk
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