Thursday, January 27, 2011

CC's WLIT Plummets After Christmas Music

Robert Feder at asks:  So what’s all the celebrating about at Clear Channel Radio?

Wednesday’s news reports and blog posts on the just-released Arbitron survey covering the four weeks from Dec. 9 to Jan. 5 touted the sensational performance of the “Holiday Lite” Christmas music format on adult contemporary WLIT-FM (93.9). “Chicagoans really loved holiday music format,” read one headline. “That Holiday Punch Is Pretty Powerful,” read another.

True enough, Lite FM nearly quadrupled its overall audience share in just two months — skyrocketing from 10th place with a 3.6 percent share in November to first place with a 12.1 in the so-called holiday book. Credited with “the steepest trajectory of any big-market Christmas station, percentage-wise,” Chicago’s Clear Channel outlet exceeded its own performance last year when it jumped from a 3.2 to a 10.2.

But look a little closer at the numbers and you’ll find the harsh reality: The moment Lite FM turns off the “Holiday Lite” and resumes its regular adult-contemporary format, those Christmas visitors vanish.

In the final week of the Portable People Meter survey, the station dropped a full 10 share points — plummeting from a 14.7 to a 4.7. In terms of cumulative weekly audience, that represented a net loss of 1,992,400 listeners.

Read more here.

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