RAJAR Q1 2009: Commercial radio regains share from BBC
Commercial radio regained audience share from the BBC in Q1 2009, with its overall share rising 0.5 per cent year on year in the period to 41.6%, following a slight dip in Q4 2008, according to the latest Rajar figures.
In Q4 2008, commercial radio's audience share fell by 0.2 percentage points year on year to 42.2%, after posting year on year audience share increases in the previous two quarters.
However, according to the latest set of Rajars, for Q1 2009, overall, including national and local radio, commercial radio's share of total audience was up slightly on the year to 41.6% driven by a 1% share increase for local commercial radio.
Commercial radio totaled a weekly reach - defined as the number of people aged 15+ who listen each week - of 31.5 million, up from 31 million a year earlier.
All radio listening, commercial and BBC, via digital platforms again increased in Q1. Radio listening via any digital platform increased by 12% year on year and 11% quarter on quarter. Rajar data for Q1 2009 reveals that 20.1% of all radio listening was via a digital platform, up from 17.8% in Q1 2008.
Once again listening via DAB leads the increase with a 12.7% share of all listening, up from 10.8% a year earlier, followed by digital TV with a 3.4% share.
Listening to radio via a digital platform in terms of weekly reach rose by 8% year on year to a level where, for the first time, one third of the population (33.8% in Q1 2009 against 31.4% in Q1 2008) now tunes in to radio via a digitally enabled set each week.
The Rajar figures also show that DAB set ownership has increased by 19% year on year, with 32.1% of adults in Q1 2009 claiming to live in a household which has a DAB receiver, up from 27.3% in Q1 2008.
Andrew Harrison, chief executive of RadioCentre, the industry body for commercial radio, said the figures were "very encouraging" although he called for the government to set a date for digital radio switchoverto accelerate growth.
This article was first published on mediaweek.co.uk
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