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P1 Stations Continue To Dominate...

 

Monday, May 16, 2022
 
P1s, the most popular, highest rated radio stations, obviously lead the pack and that was never more true than in the results found in the Jacobs Media's 18th annual TechSurvey reviewed recently in a webinar.
 
The survey focused on radio's strengths among 30,000 core users taken from email databases and social media pages of 470 participating stations, taking part in Jacobs online survey during January and February of 2022...
 
P1s averaged 74% of the respondents surveyed. There is a number even higher for listeners of formats such as sports (86%) and Triple-A, Adult R&B, Country and Classic Hits (77% each) and News/Talk (76%) when seeking this content...
 
Among those formats significantly underperforming vs. that average are Rock (67%), Adult/Variety Hits (65%) and Alternative (56%.)  Jacobs Media President/Founder Fred Jacobs: "That's a problem for Alternative because its fans go to other places oftentimes for that content. The younger the fan, the greater the likelihood that they have bailed out on listening to the broadcast radio alternative station and instead have moved off to the digital streaming platform."
 
In this TechSurvey, like previous ones, listeners mentioned their reason for listening to AM/FM because of their connection to P1 stations. This is especially true since COVID, with four in ten core listeners feeling a sense of connection in both this and last year's survey vs. three in ten in pre-pandemic 2019 and 2020 (that survey was conducted prior to spring's lockdown). "Stations benefited from making a closer connection with the audience when they needed it. You won't see that in a rating book" added Jacobs...
 
According to this year's TechSurvey, 12% of core users say they are listening to broadcast radio less in the last year, with spending less time in-car and lifestyle changes the most mentioned reasons, each given by half of those listening less. Based on recent trends, Jacobs call the first of those two "the smoking gun" as to why people are spending less time with radio, as less time in a car moved from 30-31% pre-COVID to 71% in 2021. At 50% in 2022, it's still significantly higher than before the pandemic...
 
Another key finding is the detected decrease in AM/FM listening overall among these core fans, with those listening for an hour or more each weekday having gone from 92% in 2018 to 86% in this year's survey, with GenZ and Millennials at 73% and 79% respectively. "It is the younger generations who are moving away from radio, or perhaps weren't here to begin with," said Jacobs. "What we've been getting hints of over the past few years is that there's all kinds of competition outside of broadcast radio. We never really get a look at the entire landscape. In fact, broadcast radio is competing against everybody who is out there."
 
A continuing trend is the increasing importance to listeners of personalities compared to the music with the former up from 57% to 62% since 2014, while the latter has fallen from 70% to 55%, with personalities taking the lead in 2019. Again, Jacobs: "What that suggests to us is this is something that is happening globally to broadcast radio, that personalities are becoming more important than music." Listening to radio for music discovery has gone from 39% in 2014 to 23% this year. "The problem as it relates to radio is those who say AM/FM radio is my go-to choice for new music discovery is going backwards. As each year goes by, radio is less significant for new music."
 
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