Wednesday, April 15, 2020

New Nielsen Statistics Will Surprise

In a webinar preview of Nielsen’s soon-to-be-released PPM listening estimates during the first month of the collective new Stay At Home lifestyle, radio seems to fare well.

Reach has been in many a positive discussion over the recent past. Nielsen data supports the fact that reach remains strong.

In fact, every PPM market retained at least 93% of their February reach in March. Six markets kept 998% of their cume while eight markets kept 97% of their cume. There was little difference in overall reach when comparing demos or ethnicities.

Meanwhile, looking at the five major dayparts, each retained at least 89% of its reach compared the prior month.

Middays in March had the highest retention (95%) compared to February. Afternoons and weekends retained 92% of their respective reaches, while mornings and evenings maintained 89% of their individual reach.

Meanwhile in-home listening was flat in the first two weeks of March, but increased slightly in week 3 and significantly in week four.

It’s no surprise that the format that gained the most in terms of share was News-Talk – 12.1 to 13.3. Meanwhile all-news gained half a share.

However the majority of formats had close to the same share in March as they did in February.

Key takeaways:
  • AM/FM radio is alive and well and has retained the majority of prior month audience: 90% of AQH and 96% of reach.
  • The perception that no one is listening to AM/FM radio away from home during the pandemic is unfounded. Even in the fourth week of March, most AM/FM radio listening was out of home (62%) versus in home (38%).
  • AM/FM radio format shares are remarkably consistent. News/Talk shares are up.
  • Don’t generalize across markets. Each market reflects unique patterns of location of listening and audience retention.
This new data from Nielsen gives useful information to share with advertisers and staffs.

Reach remains a key radio strength and that weekly cume today is 96% of pre-COVID-19 levels.

Additionally, in Nielsen’s own words, “The perception that no one is listening away from home during the pandemic is unfounded.”

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